June 8, 2014 ALP Monthly Meeting Report
by James Kevin Ty & Christopher Louie Lu

Last June 8 , members of the Astronomical League of the Philippines (ALP) held their monthly  meeting at Manila Planetarium.  Members who attended were ALP President James Kevin Ty ,Secretary Christopher Louie Lu , Auditor Edgar Ang, directors Mike Enage & John Ray Cabrera ;  Edge Lat, Marlon Monzon, Mark Vornhusen & wife Arlene ; Vincent Gella, Dodi Maralit, Norman Marigza and newest member Nico Enriquez.

Meeting started at around 3:00pm with ALP Secretary Christopher Louie Lu presenting an interesting lecture on Kepler-186f.  Discovered by the Kepler Space Telescope using the transit method along with 4 other additional planets orbiting closer to its parent star.  It took 3 years of data analysis to confirm its discovery. Initially presented as KIC (Kepler Input Catalog) 8120608 & KOI (Kepler Object of Interest) 571 on March 19, 2014. Full public announcement is made on April 17, 2014. This is the first Earth-size planet found orbiting in the Habitable zone of its parent star.

5 Things You Should Know About Kepler-186f

1.) Discovery of Kepler-186f is a historic find:

      Though astronomers have found other exoplanets orbiting inside its habitable zone, this is the first time they found a Earth-sized planet orbiting its stars habitable zone.

2.) Life could thrive on its surface:

      Though Kepler-186f is Earth-sized it may not be Earth-like. However, since it orbits well inside the stars habitable zone its possible that this exoplanet has the atmospheric characteristics to support liquid water on its surface. An essential ingredient for life as we know it.

3.) Kepler-186f is a multi-planet system:

      Like our own solar system, Kepler-186 harbors 4 other planets. These four planets are roughly 1.5 times the size of the Earth but it orbits closer to its parent star. Making these other planets hotter & thus cant support life.

4.) Kepler-186f is Earth's cousin not its twin:

    Kepler-186f has certain characteristics & properties that are similar with Earth but without further observation, data gathering & analysis, the only similarity we have with Kepler-186f is merely our size. To be able to call an exoplanet Earths twin, it should orbit around a sun-like star, has an oxygen-based atmosphere, has an abundant amount of liquid water on its surface, has life & ultimately intelligent life.

  SETI (Search for ExtraTerrestrial Intelligence) as part of its search for intelligent life & using the Allen Telescope Array, had listened for radio emissions from Kepler-186 system for about a month. So far, no signals has attributable to extraterrestial technology were found.

5.) Its star is cooler than our Sun:

   With just half the mass of our Sun, Kepler-186 is considered as a Red-dwarf star. If Kepler-186f were revolving our Sun its orbit would be within the orbit of the planet Mercury, a planet considered uninhabitable. But because the star is a smaller red-dwarf, Kepler-186f sits comfortably in its habitable zone.

ALP Secretary Christopher Louie Lu presenting an interesting lecture on Kepler-186f.

ALP president James Kevin Ty discuss ALP's participation on the upcoming June 22, 2014 International SunDay.

Afterwards, ALP president James Kevin Ty discuss ALP's participation on the upcoming June 22, 2014 International SunDay which more than 100+ astro organizations around the world will simultaneously setup solar telescopes to provide the public a free public viewing of our closest star, the Sun in white light as well as Ha wavelength.

Lastly, the video on the demotion of Pluto was shown to the members so that they can fully understand why Pluto was demoted to dwarf planet status.

Meeting ended at around 6:00pm.



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