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03-01-10 Town Council Packets(2) Scope of Project Outline for development of the SNOWMASS VILLAGE OBSERVA'T'ORY Presented to Snowmass Village Submitted by Aspen Skies LLc DAVID AND SHIRLEY AGUILAR www.aspenskies.com i REVISED MARCH 1 2010 f Confidentiality and Disclaimer This document contains confidential planning information for an astronomical observatory in Snowmass Village, Colorado. The information contained herein has been created and developed by Aspen Skies LLC, a science education company based in Carbondale, CO. By accepting this document the recipient agrees to treat all information presented as confidential. h addition the recipient understands that by accepting this document it causes its directors, officers, agents, employees and representatives to use this information only to evaluate the public observatory concept for the purpose of forming a relationship with Aspen Skies LLC, for the purpose of developing and producing said ideas, and for no other purpose. This information cannot be reproduced, duplicated, or revealed, in whole or in part, or used in any other manner without the prior written permission of Aspen Skies LLC. Should there be no interest in the proposal, the recipient shall return or otherwise dispose of this proposal as directed by Aspen Skies. 2010 Aspen Skies LLC, represented by David and Shirley Aguilar Aspen Skies LLC All rights reserved. March 2010 2 An OVERVIEW We are excited about the prospect of developing a proposal to detail a plan for a dramatically new destination idea for Snowmass a state of the art public Observatory for viewing the planets, stars, and galaxies from Snowmass's world -class mountaintop location. Clear dark skies, unobstructed views and the ultimate in fresh mountain air all combine to provide a spectacular utopia in Snowmass that is ideally suited for children, teens, adults and the young at heart to enrich their minds and hearts with the wonders of the universe. The Snowmass Village Observatory would provide a high caliber immersive experience for visitors and area residents to enjoy, explore, and study the stars and planets amid this beautiful alpine environment. Guided observing sessions, astronomy themed workshops and guest speaker presentations are just some of the programs we envision for this venue. And significantly, one of the most wonderful aspects of modern astronomy is the opportunity for amateurs to make contributions to the field as they learn more about the hands -on techniques of using telescopes to view the night sky. Not only could Snowmass provide an ultimate location for astronomical observing, but also science -based learning that combines the rich elements of past knowledge with the potential of future discoveries. This could signal Snowmass as a place with a forward looking edge among the world's destination resorts. On the following pages is an outline of the specific components required to develop and implement an observatory facility as defined in our meeting with the Snowmass Marketing Group on 12/8/09. Where possible we have provided estimated costs in order that you may accurately gauge the financial and staffing requirements during this initial review phase. Accordingly, the intent of this Outline is to better define the overall scope of the project for the Town of Snowmass and its officials. Based upon your acceptance of the Outline, we recommend the development of a full Observatory Facility Proposal to include actual costs for each area of the facility and its operation. A quote for development of this Proposal is included in this document. We would be thrilled to have the opportunity to help the Snowmass Village evolve into a top world destination for soaring ski mountains and phenomenal stargazing! Aspen Skies LLC All rights reserved. March 2010 3 An SNOWMASS VILLAGE OBSERVATORY, SCOPE OF PROJECT OUTLINE L Dark Sky Site The project requires an approximate 50 sq. foot site with an unobstructed view of southern sky and "Ecliptic' (the east to west apparent path of the sun and planets as they travel across the night sky). The northern area of sky is not as significant for viewing purposes, and thus may be partially obscured. H. Facility Site and Access to be provided by Snowmass Village. i. Parking /volume required to be determined based on site study ii. Electrical power sleeves required underground III. Facility Equipment Costs Approx. Cost/Rate i. 14.6' Observatory Dome $23,250 (A 14.6' Observatory accommodates up to 15 people at a time) ii. Dome Walls 7,900 iii. Dome Shipping/ Delivery $1,500 3,000 iv. Observatory Pier $2,500 V. 16" LX200 -ACF Telescope and Mount $15,000 vi. Computer and Monitor $3,500 (for direct viewing of objects) vii. Safety lights/ additional lighting $600 viii. Audio system (optional) $1,500 ix. Solar Panel alternative energy source TBD per research X. Adjunct warming/ presentation area TBD per site selection Estimated Total Equipment: $55,750- $57250 IV. Facility Build and Installation Process note pending site selection and bids i. Architectural/ Engineering Services TBD ii. Electrical Services TBD iii. Pier Excavation and installation /foundation installation iv. Observatory Assembly, 7+ days (weather dependent) V. Equipment installation, set -up and calibration and testing, 3 -5 days (weather dependent) vi. Exterior observatory finishing stone, faux stone Optional Estimated Build and Install: Cost TBD based on site selection V. Prrrject Management and Program Services provided by Aspen Skies i. Select contractor /builder, plus electrical/ lighting (we can recommend a local contractor /builder) and foundation, electrical wiring and lighting /audio contractors to meet with David...1 day ii. Develop Observatory building schematic plan (w/ contractor) and Project Schedule 3 days iii. Coordinate building permit application with regulations provided to meet building code 2 days Aspen Skies LLC All rights reserved. March 2010 4 An- iv. Oversee excavation, foundation, facility build, equipment installation, set-up, calibration, testing 12 -15 days (weather dependent) V. Development of Long -Term Public Astronomy Program and Events Plan 4 days vi. Detail of Staffing Requirements... included in vi vii. Consult on Marketing and Promotion of Facility Launch (includes opening presentation) 3 days viii. Training of local equipment operators... 2 days ix. Assist TOS w/ locating a facility director (part-time director)... included Approx. 27 -30 days 0$1,000 /per. Project travel expenses are billable at cost. Estimated Project Management costs: $27,000-30,000 Snowmass Village Observatory Estimated Project Total' *pending Site Selection and Install Services: $82,750 87,250 Aspen Skies LLC All rights reserved. March 2010 5 SAMPLE OBSERVATORY DOME, 'TELESCOPE MOUNT Hnriyan I ine r �r 0 Aspen Skies LLC All rights reserved March 2010 6 CONTACT INFORMATION: TEL. DAVID SHIRLEY AGUILAR 781.696.4251 WEB www.aspenskies.com EMAIL: inquiries@aspenskies.com About David A. Aguilar, Director of Public Affairs and Science Information, Harvard- Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics A naturalist, astronomer, and astronomical artist, David resides near Cambridge, MA and part-time in Carbondale, Colorado. An expert in astronomy and great- explainer -of- science, his work reflects his passion for bringing the wonders of space to wider audiences. He is the Director of Public Affairs and Science Information at the Harvard Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA), the largest astronomical research organization in the world. David is the author and illustrator of National Geographic's "PLANETS, STARS, AND GALAXIES: A Visual Encyclopedia of Our Universe a vividly illustrated book that celebrates the wonders of space, and Finalist for the 2008 VOYA (Voice of Youth) Award, and "11 PLANETS His next National Geographic book "SUPER STARS" examines the life cycle of stars throughout the Universe. "SUPER STARS" is set for release in February 2010. He is the past Director of the Fiske Planetarium and Science Center at the University of Colorado, and the originator of the Science Discovery Program at CU. Following Fiske; he joined Ball Aerospace as Marketing Communications Director, and was Marketing Director for the PBS Emmy- winning NOVA series Evolution. David has appeared along with his astronomical art depictions of alternate universes on the History Channel's "The Universe" and "UFO Hunters" series. His artwork has been featured in Time magazine, US News World Report, ABC Nightly News, CNN, the New York Times, USA Today, National Geographic, Sky Telescope, Astronomy, and Scientific American. He is scholar and enrichment lecturer for Smithsonian World Tours and Smithsonian Journeys, and popular host of the Harvard Smithsonian CfA programs "Observatory Nights and the lecture /film series "Everything I Leaned about Science I Learned at the Movies He and his wife Shirley have co- founded "Aspen Skies a science education group specializing in custom -built observatories. Aspen Skies LLC All rights reserved. March 2010 7 Front.RajnWgr Livi[IX8 March, 2010 Search Aboui FrontRan$eLivinexom Outdoors Stargazing CELESTIAL WANDERLUST: A GUIDE TO STARGAZING By Heather Grimshaw The night sky glitters, lights skip and dance, and those down below gaze and wonder. They watch closely and follow the show, connecting the dots, plotting their course.... Stargazing Across the Front Range When most of us look up at the blanket of blue sky we see twinkles of light, a sliver of moon, and if by chance we're looking through binoculars we may see something else, a passing of another planet, Mars perhaps. And on those nights sky gazers get a glimpse of the environment beyond the night sky. Realizing that the earth is but one of many planets in the solar system is a concept that most students learn in school and one that many adults do not truly grasp until they stumble out into a dark, clear night and look up at the sky. At some point you realize that the sky, albeit a beautiful canvas, is a small part of a much larger environment in which planets swirl at breath taking speeds in an oxygen -free sphere. "We have a very rich astronomical heritage that people forget in modern times," says Jim Beaber, astronomy resource specialist for the Jefferson County Schools Planetarium. His goal, he says, is to remind them of its influence and ongoing significance. The Planetarium, which has been operational for the last 40 years, offers 14 programs such as "The Night Sky' and "The Sky Tonight" that touch on the influence of the solar system. In an attempt to get a better perspective on the solar system I took a trip to the Gates Planetarium in Denver with my husband, sat back and realized how much there is to explore, and see. New technology enables laypeople, those who may recognize the names of Saturn, Pluto, and Uranus from schoolbooks, to see picture perfect images of passing planets. And as they swirled by, we began to grasp how vast the solar system is. And how small a part we have in it. As the lights dimmed, audience members rocked back in their seats leaning their heads back to get a full view of the ceiling, which reveals a journey through space. The 20- minute show is a perfect bite size introduction to the world of star gazing, which appeals to a greater number of people men and women of all ages who seek their own experiences in space. A Romance with the Stars Stargazing has an inextricable link to romance. It's got all the essential components: mystery, chase and ultimate discovery. An independent hobby, stargazing is an activity that is easily shared by couples, families, and friends and an increasing number of people host star parties or gather to experience events together. There are annual conventions, monthly seminars, and sporadic parties and get togethers for local stargazers. Planetariums and universities are the best way to meet like minded stargazers, many of whom say that the best weather conditions for stargazing are cold, dark nights when across the Front Range clear skies can be viewed by the naked eye. "Stargazing is an intensely relaxing hobby," says Carolyn Collins Petersen, a science writer and author who guest lectures and hosts star parties. "Even though some people find it intimidating at first it's nothing more complex than looking up at the stars and exploring." In truth nothing could be simpler than gazing at the open sky though some choose binoculars for a clearer view or telescopes of varying strengths. But many professionals say that a good set of eyes and a star chart or ptanisphere is all that you need to get started. "You can point your way to other places, and you'll find people who are more than happy to help you," says Petersen, who launched a website wwww.thesoacewriter.corn) for stargazers in the '90s. The website offers its visitors a tour of the stars and planets with articles and other related links. "It [stargazing] is infectious, you really get hooked." At the age of four possibly five Collins Petersen was hooked when she heard about Sputnik being launched into orbit. "I thought `orbit' was a cool word. It was the first time I really looked up and realized there was something up there." But it wasn't the last. Collins Petersen, who moved to Boston from Colorado for a job at SkyWatch Magazine and currently works with her husband to produce astronomy materials for planetariums and science centers, emphasizes the ease of stargazing across the Front Range. "You just have to find the night sky the patterns. It's just like looking at a road map of Boulder," she says. "You just need to MEMNO know where the streets are and what intersects it." Indeed, before setting off for a drive you check maps to gauge distance or print out directions online. For stargazers the same is true. But unlike the congestion of city streets, stars and planets are connected by a web devoid of traffic, aloft from the hustle and bustle of earthly concerns; one of its many draws. And the map you'd print out would be a planisphere (available at www.skyandtelesco e.com to chart your course. Robert Morris, Astronomy Educator for the Fiske Planetarium in Boulder, sees a steady influx of people who are interested in stargazing and attributes the local draw to Colorado's dark skies. "it doesn't take much effort to drive up into the mountains and see a sky full of stars," he says. Longmont is one of his favorite spots though "anywhere away from the cities is actually a good spot," he adds. Similar to the enticement of a new town, stargazers approach the heavens with a quest for knowledge, escape, or perspective. "As I stargaze I often wonder what it would be like to be on a spaceship floating past a distant planet or through a nebula," says Collins Petersen who frequently visited Golden Gate Park, Brainard Lake and Rocky Mountain National Park. From most gauges, stargazing draws an increasing number of men and women of all ages and backgrounds. "Trying to find out how many people are stargazing is kind of like trying to herd amoebas," says Collins Petersen. "For a long time people thought stargazing was a `guy' thing, [but] it's not. I've lectured at star parties where ladies are setting up their scopes next to the guys, the 6- year -olds are out there having as much fun as the 60- year -olds, and everybody's a geek and loving it." And while time in life may differ, many stargazers say the realization that there is another world available to them is t k both invigorating as well as relaxing. It provides them with endless educational opportunities, a venue for escape, and for perspective. Across the Front Range there are ample opportunities for stargazing since high elevations and the black night sky are a combination for stargazing success. And while binoculars are helpful, many stargazers simply employ their own eyes to steer the cosmos. For those who seek a more powerful view, planetariums offer public events. The public has always turned up in large numbers to our weekly telescope viewings," says Morris. "And whenever there is a special event, such as the Mars close approach or lunar eclipse, we end up with a full house." Historically there was an enormous leap between novice stargazers, who wait for clear nights and trounces off, binoculars in hand to watch a show of lights. But that gap is closing, says Collins Petersen. Professionals are enlisting the help of novice stargazers to track the movement of comets, asteroids, or gravitational listing, she says. "Some [novices] have better equipment than the professionals." 5 r, s Sources: Denver Museum of Nature &t Science, 2001 Colorado Boulevard, Denver; www.dmns.org /planetarium Chamberlin Observatory, 2930 E. Warren Avenue, on the University of Denver campus. www denverastroso ie v org or call 303-281-9052 K.J. Jarigese teaches astronomy on four campuses of Front Range Community College and often organizes telescope viewings at the Pawnee National Grasslands. E -mail him for information: Iogre@rkymtnhi.com. Fiske Planetarium on the University of Colorado campus,' Boulder, at 303 492 -5001; www.colorado.edujfiske check website for public viewing times and the Sommers Bausch Lf Observatory on the CU campus; http:/Jtyra,cotorado.edu/sbo x The Space Writer; www.thespacewriter com /blog,html K Jefferson County Schools Planetarium; 1829 Denver West Drive, Golden, 80401, 303 982 -7278; http• /jeffcoweb ieffco k12 co us /isu /science /plan Black Canyon at Gunnison National Park is treated to telescope viewing by amateur astronomy groups from Montrose. Contact the park in the summer for details: Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park, 102 Elk Creek, Gunnison, 81230; www nps gov /blca Professional Groups: American Astronomical Society; www.aas.org International Planetarium Society; www.ips- planetarium org North American Meteor Network; www.namnmeteors org Rocky Mountain Mars Society; htt /t� /chapters marssociety_,or2 /usa /co/ Local Amateur Astronomical Societies: Arkansas Valley Astronomical Society (Buena Vista); fourteenerne�.com /eves/ �.om�/�s/ Aurora Astronomical Association; http://a cubed,triDod.com/ Black Canyon Astronomical Society (Montrose); -vww.emerald-faeries.net/Astronomv/AstronQmy.htm Cheyenne Astronomical Society; httD: home.bresnan.net/-curranm Colorado Springs Astronomical Society; M6LN.rmss.org Denver Astronomical Society; www,denverastrosocieV---"r International Association for Astronomical Studies (Denver); w.i aas.oro Laramie Astronomical Society and Space Observers; www. tariat. ore/ LASSO Longmont Astronomical Society; http://[aDS.Lst,noaa.gov/cp-i/las.cgi Mountain Astronomical Research Section of the Astronomical League; P gionat/marLhtffli Northern Colorado Astronomical Society (Fort Collins); httD://ncastro.org/ Rocky Mountain Planetarium Society; wMLf.rnIDadgmes.or Western Colorado Astronomy Club (Grand Junction); www.cotoradowestastronomy.org Mail this article to a friend.' 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