The Sun is the most dynamic object in the sky and can be a real treat to observe; especially when it comes to eclipses and other special solar events. Solar equipment can be a great way to expand your observing capabilities. 

When it comes to observing the Sun great caution needs to be put in place to prevent damage to your eyes. Specialized equipment is needed to observe our star safely for you and others. However, due to their nature and use solar filters can be expensive and there are many different types to choose from.

SOL (Solar Observing Lab)

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Welcome to SOL (Solar Observing Lab), this day long event provides a unique opportunity to get an up-close look at a wide range of today's modern solar equipment. From eclipse glasses to advanced Hydrogen-alpha filters SOL will provide an experience like no other. This is your chance explore a variety of solar equipment in one spot, in hopes, you will leave a with a better understanding of safe solar observing habits and maybe an idea on how you would like to purse solar astronomy. 

Throughout the day telescopes will be available for viewing outside the sun (weather permitting). We will have a collection of experienced astronomers and telescopes vendors on site showcasing their equipment as well as answering questions. For information about SOL please see below for locations, times and other information. You can also find all the event information on the SOL Event PDF: LINK

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General Information

Event Information:

Tickets:

General admission to the Challenger Space Center is as follows:

  • Adult: $10

  • Child: $8

  • Children under 5 years old: FREE

  • Paradise Valley Students (with ID): FREE

  • Paradise Valley Teacher (with ID): FREE

To pre-order: Purchase Tickets Online! 

There is no additional fee for the SOL event, only the general admission to the center applies. All admission goes directly to the supporting the Challenger Space Center and allowing them to continue the outreach efforts across the Valley. 

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What to Expect at SOL

Telescope Field:

SOL is all about hands on education for observing the Sun and eclipses safely. From 10am to 3pm a wide range of solar equipment will be set up outside the Challenger Space Center. Ranging from basic eclipse glasses to research grade solar filters and everything in between. Astronomers will be on site to show you around and answer any questions you may have of the various types of filters, telescopes and equipment being used. 

Talks:

Throughout the day talks will be going on inside covering basics of solar equipment and prepping for eclipses. The schedule for talks is listed below, please note talks maybe added as we get closer to the event. There is no additional fee for talks but we do recommend registering ahead of time to save a seat in the talk. Talks are limited to 40 people. To pre-register for the talks please fill out the Registration section to the right. 

  • Preparing for a Solar Eclipse: 10:30am to 11:30am 

  • Simple Safe Sun (eclipses for teachers/students): Noon to 12:30pm

  • Preparing for a Solar Eclipse: 1:00pm to 2:00pm

SOL Talk Pre-Registration
Are you new to astronomy?
Have you seen an eclipse?
Select your talk (check all you plan to attend):

Thanks for registering to SOL. See you there!

SOL Star Party

To wrap up a day of astronomy join us for a night of stargazing. The SOL public star party takes places from 6:30pm to 9:30pm on the main telescope field. 

A wide range of equipment will be out for viewing from our very own 28" LAOT telescope to live imaging demos from local astronomers and vendors. Starizona will be providing on site demos of their Hyperstar system amongst many other telescopes for viewing. 

Star Party Tickets:

For those wishing to attend the star party please see the ticket break down below. 

  • Adult: $5

  • Child: $4

  • Children under 5 years old: FREE

  • Paradise Valley Students (with ID): FREE

  • Paradise Valley Teacher (with ID): FREE

  • Returning SOL attendee (with ticket): FREE

To pre-order: Purchase Tickets Online! 

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Displaying Vendors

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