Stargazing 291218


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Stargazing is one of the most ancient and enthralling of human scientific endeavours. From ancient times till now, people have looked up at the dark night sky and been fascinated by what they have seen.

Bangalore still has a couple of oases at night, where some basic stargazing is possible. One such location is the Raman Research Institute (RRI) Trust property in Kengeri. Set amidst 50 acres of woodland, this secluded spot is protected from the worst of Bangalore’s light pollution. Moreover, the old house on the property is an ideal place to spend the night for up to 30 people (4 bedrooms and bathrooms, and plenty of space to spread out sleeping bags) and enjoy an entire night of stargazing.

Dr. Procheta Mallik, an astronomer by training and the Principal Scientist at ThinkTac, organises stargazing nights for children and adults at the RRI Trust property during the observing season. From the moon, to planets such as Jupiter and Saturn, to star-forming regions such as the Orion Nebula and the Pleiades Cluster, Procheta shows them all through his 10cm Celestron GoTo Telescope.

Procheta is supported by a passionate group of team-mates from ThinkTac and elsewhere. Srinivas V is an amateur astronomer, with a vast knowledge and interest in anything cosmic. Lakshitha Nama Mahesh is a telescope-maker and an M.Sc. from IIT-BHU, after which she has done projects at the Kodaikanal Solar Observatory of the Indian Institute of Astrophysics; she is currently applying to reputed institutes for Ph.D. positions in astronomy. Proteep Mallik is faculty at the School of Liberal Studies, Azim Premji University, a trained Optical Engineer from the Optical Sciences Center, University of Arizona, where he worked in building and testing some of the largest telescopes on Earth; he brings with him bags of technical knowledge, enthusiasm and a couple of wonderful manual telescopes from APU.

Things to keep in mind

  1. Participants are requested to reach RRI Trust Estate at Kengeri ( by 6PM
  2. Bangalore seems like the mosquito capital of the world, and Kengeri the capital therein. So any natural repellent, like citronella or Odomos is a good idea
  3. There are 7 beds with mattresses as well as 3 extra mattresses. However, we would recommend that you get your own sleeping bags or at least bedsheets
  4. Please carry 1-2 litres of water for the night
  5. Food is not provided, and it is highly recommended that you carry your own snacks/dinner. Alternative is to order from Dominos or Adigas, but their delivery maybe delayed
  6. There needs to be a minimum of 10 participants and a maximum of 25 for the event to go ahead. In case there are less than 10 participants, the event will be cancelled 24hrs prior to the event, i.e. by 6pm on the evening before the event. Registrants will be offered a refund or a rescheduled slot in such a case. Registration will automatically close if there are more than 25 registrants
  7. In case of a complete washout due to weather, participants will be offered a refund or an available rescheduled slot