Session 81 - IDEA's in Astronomy.
Oral session, Thursday, June 13
Old Madison,

## [81.02] Can Apples Fall Upwards?'' Astronomy for Students and Their Teachers at the Merle A. Starr Observatory

F. Pinto (Portland State Univ./Univ. of Portland)

An overview will be presented of the activities performed at the Merle A. Starr Observatory as part of the IDEA project entitled Can Apples Fall Upwards? Exploring the Notion of Gravity through Hands-On CCD-Based Travel within the Solar System.''

The Merle A. Starr Observatory, located on the University of Portland campus, is operated jointly by Portland State University and the University of Portland. This facility houses the historical McIntosh-Gee 1:10 replica of the Hale telescope at Mt. Palomar. Its 20'' honey-combed Pirex mirror was one of three blanks cast by Corning in 1929 as an experiment for the 200'' mirror.

Under the approved IDEA proposal, an Axiom AX-2 CCD camera with a KAF-1600 Kodak 1536\times 1024 array, is used for image acquisition. A filter wheel, motorized focuser, and image processing software are also part of the approved proposal.

This paper will discuss the efforts made to reach out to the local educational community in the Portland area and in the State of Oregon in general as indicated in the original IDEA proposal. This will include use of the instrument, electronic dissemination of the information, seminars for local teachers, and projects available for their pupils.