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Education & Public Outreach

Education and Public Outreach Missions and Goals

A crucial goal of UC-HIPACC outreach is to give back to the public through UC computational astrophysics research and education.

UC-HIPACC will help researchers prepare material in forms that will facilitate use in outreach and education, including in the classroom, on the internet, in planetaria, and for broadcast media. UC-HIPACC staff coordinate web distribution of relevant lectures, seminars, meetings, and regularly update web pages on relevant topics. The UC-HIPACC staff will make links to print and broadcast content creators and facilitate the use of astronomical simulations outputs in TV documentaries.

The UC-HIPACC administration will also collaborate with planetaria, science museums, and other organizations that reach the astronomy-interested public. Many planetaria are augmenting their traditional star projectors with fabulously capable new digital projectors having resolutions of 4000 pixels across the dome; even 3-D is coming. These venues are astronomical IMAX theatres of the future. Planetarium shows to which UC-HiPACC members have contributed astronomical computations and images include “Life: A Cosmic Story,” showing in the 75-foot dome of the Morrison Planetarium in San Francisco (which opened in November 2010), and “Deep Space Adventure” showing in the 71-foot dome of the Adler Planetarium in Chicago (which opened in July 2011).

Several UC campuses have major programs in digital arts and new media, and UC-HIPACC will promote collaborations with such groups. The The staff will also actively pursue fundraising in collaboration with groups at the UC campuses and national labs in order that UC-HIPACC can grow into a scientific center largely supported by outside funds. Ultimately, it is expected that the staff will work out of both the UC-HIPACC headquarters at UCSC and also another center in southern California such as SDSC/UCSD.