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.


RAS activities Winter Quarter 2015

Information about special RAS events will be posted here. The RAS will also hold Monday meetings and public observation (Ryerson Wednesdays) each week (see below).

Public Yerkes trip: We will have a public trip to Yerkes Obsevatory on Friday, May 22nd (Friday of 8th week). More information is available at the facebook page for the event. If you're interested in coming, you can sign up using this form - the trip is free, and no prior astronomy experience is required!


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). To sign to give a talk, email John Roberts (jaroberts@uchicago.edu) or come to a Monday meeting and write your name and tentative subject on the talk schedule.

Spring 2015 Monday Talk Schedule
Date Speaker Topic
April 6 Film viewing 'In the Shadow of the Moon' (1/2)
April 13 Film viewing 'In the Shadow of the Moon' (2/2)
April 20 Mitch Spradlin Rocket physics
April 27 TBA TBA
May 4 John Roberts Pulsating Variable Stars
May 11 Mitchell Neal Astrobiology
May 18 Carina Baker TBA
May 25 TBA TBA

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 2015
Date RAS officer in charge
April 8 Adam Sutherland
April 15 Michael Cervia
April 22 Alex Droster
April 29 Alex Droster
May 6 Ningfeng Zhu
May 13 John Roberts
May 20 Carina Baker
May 27 Mitch Spradlin
June 3 Mitch Spradlin

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 John Roberts 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.