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During the school year, the Department of Physics and Astronomy offers a ninety-minute astronomy presentation to members of the public. The program is held on Friday evenings at the Morehead Observatory and is hosted by an astronomy faculty member or graduate student. The observatory is home to a 24-inch reflecting telescope, donated to the department in 1973 by the John Motley Morehead Foundation. During the program, visitors can tour the observatory, see the telescope in action and have ample opportunity to ask questions. When weather permits, visitors can observe the moon, planets, star clusters and nebulae directly through the telescope as well as obtain images with an electronic CCD camera. In the case of inclement weather, a short tour, talk and presentation of past images taken with the telescope will be given.

 

 

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Reservations
The program is free, but space is limited and reservations are required. The program is usually held most Friday evenings, September through November and January through April, at either 8:00 or 9:00 pm. For more information or to make reservations, please visit http://skynet.unc.edu/guestnight/.

Important Note:
The telescope room is neither heated nor air-conditioned. Bring warm clothing on cold nights.

 

Directions:

From Raleigh:

  1. Take I-40 west to exit #270 (the 15-501 exit).
  2. Turn left to Chapel Hill. Go 1.6 miles to Franklin Street exit to the right (about 1/4 mile after Erwin Road traffic light – this exit is preceded by about 1/2 block with a Morehead Planetarium sign and immediately at the exit there is a Franklin Street sign).
  3. Take this exit and proceed on Franklin Street for 2.6 miles.
  4. Morehead Planetarium is located on the left side of the road about 1/2 block after Hillsborough Street (also labeled Raleigh St. on left side of road) traffic light.

Or:

  1. Take I-40 west to exit #273B
  2. This puts you on route 54 going west, which you take 4 miles to the Raleigh Street traffic light (this is about 1 mile beyond the 54/15-501 bypass, which you do not get on).
  3. Turn right at Raleigh Street.
  4. Go north two blocks to the Franklin Street traffic light.
  5. Turn left onto Franklin Street, and the Morehead Planetarium is about 1/2 block down on the left side of the street.

From Durham:

  1. Take 15-501 south to the Franklin Street exit (this exit is preceded by about 1/2 block with a Morehead Planetarium sign and immediately at the exit there is a Franklin Street sign).
  2. This exit is about 1.5 miles past the I-40 interchange and about 1/4 mile past the Erwin Road traffic light.
  3. Proceed on Franklin Street for 2.6 miles.
  4. Morehead Planetarium is located on the left side of the road about 1/2 block after Hillsborough Street (also labeled Raleigh St. on left side of road) traffic light.

Coming from another direction?

Use Google Maps to find your way to the Morehead Planetarium.