All posts by Leslie Strike

Nov 5: RCI Lecture on Black Holes at Central Library 7:30 p.m.

On Thursday, November 5, the Royal Canadian Institute in conjunction with the Mississauga Centre is hosting a talk by Eric Poisson, from the Department of Physics at the University of Guelph, entitled “Riding the Tide on Black Holes” at the Noel Ryan Auditorium, Ground Floor, Mississauga Central Library, 301 Burnhamthorpe Road W.

Eric Poisson, BSc, MSc, Ph.D.

Parking is free after 6 p.m. underneath the library. The entrance to the garage is on the west side of Duke of York Boulevard, between City Centre Drive and Burnhamthorpe Road, and you must be travelling southbound to access the ramp.

Starfest was a lot of fun

Starfest was a wonderful weekend for those interested in astronomy to observe together, listen to illuminating lectures, and get to know their fellow Centre members better. There were over 35 members from Mississauga attending. Skies varied from really good (Wednesday), through clear with poor transparency and seeing to fog-bound. Evenings were spent observing through telescopes both large and small, learning something new about the night sky or just visiting back and forth.

A big thank you to David Mitchell and his family for the lovely supper and breakfast Chez Rikki.

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Fri Jan 23 8 pm – Chandrasekhar’s Limit

This talk by Keith Jarvie examines (at the level of an amateur enthusiast with minimal math skills) the interplay between the birth of quantum mechanics, and its application to understanding the life cycles of the stars’. The historical record is traced through the lives of the scientists who contributed to the field, each of whom provides clear evidence of their genius, and in numerous instances, their eccentricities. Central to the narrative are the points of collision between Dr. Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, and Sir Arthur Eddington, a ‘founding father’ and dominant force in early cosmology. The passage of almost 100 years provides ample context to reflect on the enduring brilliance of those early insights which remain the foundation for our current understanding of high-energy events within the cosmos.
Keith has had a life-long, casual interest in astronomy. His interest in visual observation was rekindled in “middle age” by the purchase of a good quality scope, sporadic periods of unemployment and membership in the RASC.  Keith’s academic work has been in the areas of psychology (Hon. B.Sc.) and pharmacology (M.Sc., Ph.D.). He worked in the pharmaceutical industry for almost 15 years conducting research into new drugs, primarily for use in the psychiatry and neurology. Presently he works as a Senior Advisor with the government of Ontario focusing on stakeholder engagement, economic and policy development for the life sciences industry.

Chris Malicki awarded 2015 RASC Service Award

It is my pleasure to announce that Chris Malicki has been chosen to receive an RASC Service Award for 2015. The RASC explains the award on its website: “The Service Award is a major award of the Society given to a member in recognition of outstanding service, rendered over an extended period of time, where such service has had a major impact on the work of the Society and/or of a Centre of the Society.”  

Chris has been the secretary of the Centre since its inception in 2006 and of the Mississauga Astronomical Society before that. He writes very concise minutes of all council meetings and for many years also wrote recaps of all Centre meetings. Chris is a very keen amateur astronomer, has travelled to numerous eclipses and has made many presentation to the Centre on his eclipse experiences and other astronomical phenomena. He is our observing guru and he is delighted to spend time pointing out objects in his telescope to fellow members and especially new members. He was instrumental in our purchase of the solar scope this past spring.

At the national level, he is one of the proofreaders of the Observer’s Handbook, checking for errors and inconsistencies within the many articles in the book – a time-consuming task that requires great attention to detail and a broad knowledge of a variety of astronomical topics. 

Chris, congratulations on receiving this most deserved award for such important contributions to the Centre and the Society. 

The award is a bronze medallion engraved with the winner’s name and year of presentation and will be presented (hopefully to Chris in person) at the General Assembly in Halifax in July.


Starfest 2014

Over 30 members of the Mississauga Centre attended Starfest August 21-24 at Mount Forest.  The talks were very interesting, the skies were clear at least part of 2 evenings and everyone had a great opportunity to make new friends and spend time with fellow astronomy enthusiasts.  A big thank you to Dave Mitchell and his family for hosting a spaghetti dinner on Thursday and a eggs, sausages and pancakes breakfast on Saturday.


The Mississauga Centre contingent at Starfest 2014
The Mississauga Centre contingent at Starfest 2014

Past President Randy Attwood Honoured

Shortly before Christmas, the RASC announced that Randy Attwood has been honoured with one of the first three Fellowship awards that the Society has conferred for extraordinary contributions to the Society over many years.  The award of Fellow of the RASC is the most senior national award, and is given to those individuals whose efforts have played a significant role in the advancement of the Society’s goals.

Congratulations, Randy. This award is very well-deserved.