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Star Watching Network - The Implementation of Summer Star Watching for FY 2010 and the Results of Star Watching for FY 2009

July 20, 2010

Star Watching Network is an activity of simultaneous nation-wide star observation by familiar means, such as with the naked eyes, binoculars or cameras. This project is conducted twice a year, in the summer and winter, since 1988 aiming at stimulating participants' interests towards clean and clear atmosphere without any light or air pollution.

The MOE tries to appeal the significance of clean air through this project on a large-scale. The MOE will further promote various policies for fostering favorable outdoor lighting setups, global warming prevention and the improvement of local atmospheric environments, such as the diffusion of lighting apparatuses with less light leakage into the air and with subdued lighting. Star Watching Network activities are introduced in the MOE web page for children at http://www.env.go.jp/kids/star.html (in Japanese).

1. FY 2010 Summer Star Watching
(1) Duration
Saturday, July 31 - Friday, August 13, 2010
Participants are required to watch stars for more than 1 day during the period.
(2) Observation method
(a) Naked eyes
Observe the Milky Way in 3 different altitudes (in the vicinity of Cygnus, Scutum, and Sagittarius).
(b) Binoculars
Observe stars in a triangle-shaped area in Lyrae including 1st magnitude star (Vega) and check magnitude of stars observed.
(c) Photographing stars
Photograph the night sky near the zenith, using single-lens reflex camera utilizing reversal film (film for slides).
2. Outline of observation results for FY 2009 Star Watching
Number of groups and individuals participated
While 886 groups applied for participation, 731 groups conducted observation in 769 locations due to bad climatic condition and other causes. The total number of individuals participated in the observation is 9,819 (756 groups and 9,872 individuals participated in FY 2008 Star Watching).

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