Ryerson Astronomical Society

Constitution History Photos RChive Meeting Notes Contact Us



The Ryerson Astronomical Society (RAS) is the University of Chicago's astronomy club. Our club's purpose is to have all humanity (or all University of Chicago students, for starters) observe the celestial luminaries in hushed awe with our antique 6.25" refractor, 10" reflector, and ~60" radio telescope. Our website has information about upcoming club events; details of RAS history; a collection of astrophotographs and RAS photos; the Rchive, a vast index of RAS documents; useful space and astronomy links; and contact information for our members.

***ROOM CHANGE***: Due to a room-scheduling mixup, RAS Monday Meetings will be in Eckhart 133 instead of Ryerson 358 for the remainder of the quarter. That's the room Steven Lucy's talk was in 2nd week FYI.


RAS activities

There will be a Yerkes trip open to the general public this quarter, likely 7th or 8th week. More details to come as they are finalized.

There may also be a dark sky camping trip, we're looking into funding possibilities.

The RAS also holds Monday meetings and public observation (Ryerson Wednesdays) each week (see below).


Monday meetings: We meet to hear presentations on astronomy-related topics from students and faculty every Monday night at 8 PM in Ryerson 358 (the classroom immediately at the top of the main staircase in Ryerson) Eckhart 133 for the rest of this quarter only. To sign up to give a talk, email the organizer of an open meeting or come to a Monday meeting and write your name and tentative subject on the talk schedule.

Spring 2016 Monday Talk Schedule
Date Organizer Speaker Topic
April 4 Mitch Spradlin Steven Lucy Human Spaceflight, Goddard through ISS Presentation Link Steven's complete 15 hour class presentation
April 11 AJ Corso Emily History of Parallax
April 18 Michael Cervia
April 25 Bryan Graybill and Alex Droster
May 2 Carina Baker
May 9 Emily Cambias
May 16 Will Misener
May 23 Carrie Volpert
June 1 (Wed) John Roberts

Public Observation (Ryerson Wednesdays): Every clear Wednesday night from 8:30 PM to 10:30 PM we have public observing at our Ryerson rooftop observatory (all the way up the spiral staircase opposite Ryerson 358). In case of bad weather, before coming please email the RAS officer in charge of observation on that night (listed below, email addresses can be found on our contacts page), to check whether we have canceled observing.

Ryerson Wednesday schedule for Spring 2016
Date RAS officer in charge
March 30 Mitch Spradlin
April 6 Mitch Spradlin
April 13 AJ Corso
April 20 Michael Cervia
April 27 Bryan Graybill and Alex Droster
May 4 Carina Baker
May 11 Emily Cambias
May 18 Will Misener
May 25 Carrie Volpert

Special events: We usually spend a night at Yerkes Observatory in Wisconsin every quarter to observe on the 24" and 41" reflectors. In spring quarter we have a Friday evening trip open to the public. Over 30 people went on the 2014 trip! We also occasionally visit dark-sky sites such as Willow Slough in Indiana.

Projects: The RAS is actively working on several astronomy-related projects on campus. If you are interested in becoming involved in a project, please contact the project lead (email addresses given below).

Trouble finding Ryerson? Here's a map of campus showing the location of Ryerson.

Trouble getting into Ryerson? Try entering through Eckhart and crossing over on the second or third floor. If Eckhart's locked, call our office and observatory at (773) 702-7625 (that's 2-7625 from any campus phone).

Looking for internship information? We have a brief summary of astronomy and astrophysics related internships in a Google Spreadsheet viewable at this address. We will try to keep it updated, and feel free to email the webmaster Will Misener with suggestions for additions or for the removal of no longer relavent information. Also, take a look at the list of NSF REU programs in astronomy and physics (including astrophysics).


Thanks to the University of Chicago Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics for webspace and technical support.