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News Updates » 23 October 2009


International Olympiad on Astronomy and Astrophysics

At the moment, I’m proudly in Iran to help out the academic committee of the 3rd International Olympiad on Astronomy and Astrophysics (IOAA) which is being held in Tehran, Iran right now. This event is an international competition among high-school students who compete through three different types of exams: (1) Theoretical, (2) Practical, and (3) Observational.

According to the official description of this Olympiad, “IOAA which has been designed to be a truly international organization on Astronomy and Astrophysics competitions, is run by an international committee, whose members are elected from international members of the organization. The purpose of IOAA is to promote interests and educations on astronomy and astrophysics of high school students. By participating in the competitions, students will have opportunities to meet fellow students of the same interests and make friends. This will lead to good understandings among countries and hence collaboration in future researches.”

The organizers of this year’s Olympiad in Iran decided to have the observational round of this competition during the “Galilean Nights” :)

Last night (22 October 2009), the observational exam of this Olympiad was held at a historical monument (Dehnamak caravansary) which is located about 150 km away from Tehran where has the ideal dark skies for the observations. Students from 20 countries participated in this observational competition by answering the requested questions by the examiners such as magnitude and coordinates estimations of few celestial objects as well as pointing one of the 8 inches telescopes, provided for this exam, to the requested objects and finding their coordinates..

I’m posting more reports about IOAA 2009 and their organized events during Galilean Nights in few days.

Shahin Jafarzadeh
Amateur astronomer and Marie Curie fellow at the Institute of Theoretical Astrophysics at the Univerisity of Oslo, Norway