Friday, March 4, 2016

CIE 2016 - Day 1

The first day of #CIE2016 is over, I’m not sure they realise they need a hashtag, and it was packed full of exciting detail.  It was fantastic to hear a talk from a local indigenous man, he described the plight of Australian aboriginals and how this local land was once a burial ground.  I wish he had spoken of how the light form Melbourne is ruining the night sky and the elaborate stories that the Australian aboriginies used to transfer knowledge through the ages of 50,000 years of occupation of this continent.  I’ll be missing the next meeting of Sydney City Skywatchers on next Monday night 7th March where Duane Haramacher, formerly of Macquarie University Sydney but now of Monash University Melbourne will be talking in indigenous astronomy. 

The Keynote Presenation by Bruce Ramus was impressive as he always is, Bruce’s resume including working on spectacular rock music shows of likes of U2 gave wonderful experience with large video screens.  The latest achievements of Ramus Entertaiment includes building size presenations such as the full facade display of Commonwealth Bank at Darling Harbour Sydney, and an impressive full building size barometer for 800 Collins Street Melbourne and an impressive building in Perth.  It can be difficult aligning these efforts with the objectie of acheiving dark skies, and as Bruce’s talk emphasised that city planners are moving to 24 hour cities, smart cities and public spaces where information is delivered through interactive lighitng displays.  Soon 70% of the population of world will be living in city - will they ever see a starry night sky?

The #CIE2016 runs in three strands and it’s impossible to see and hear everything, my choice was for the technical nature of ‘Advanced Radiometry and Photometry’ and I dragged Dr Nick Lomb (formerly of Sydney Observatory) and now with IDA Victoria, along to this session.  Of the four speakers two where concerned with measuring and estimating the the uncertainities in measuring colour, my discrete mathematics was taken for a test run as they spoke on Monte Carlo simulations from their collected databases, so I’m glad I took those gradute statistics classes in 2015.  The other talks were on actually measuring colour and the laser calibrated trap detector is evidence that lasers are making their way into lighting. 

I might need to leave day 1 report here for the moment because it's the begining of day 2 and I need to get the conference, so I'll update with a few images later.  Looks like excellent weather in Melbourne, first time ever I've been here and it's not raining.

And a fitting way to end the first day was with an SQM reading from Fiztroy Gardens, 18.36 from the centre of Melbourne, unfortunately I needed an astro finder on the iPhone to locate Crux, only three stars barely visible, delta Crucis was definitely not visible - but it was clear night.  I made my first Melbourne entry for Globe At Night 

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