16th Annual Bullitt Lecture

Bullitt poster

Speaker:  Fred Espenak (NASA, retired)
When: 6:30pm, Thu. Oct. 13
Where: Comstock Concert Hall, School of Music, 105 W Brandeis Ave, Louisville KY 40292 (across from the Planetarium)
Parking: available from 5pm, North Info Lot and Red Reserved Lot
at the College of Business -- gates will be up.  Other parking (charges
apply) is available in the Speed Art Museum parking deck or in the
parking lot at Fourth St. & Cardinal Blvd, beside PNC Bank.

     On Aug. 21, 2017, a total eclipse of the Sun will be visible from the contiguous United States for the
first time since 1979.  The track of the Moon's shadow cuts diagonally across the nation from Oregon to
South Carolina.  Inside the 68-mile-wide path of totality, the Moon will completely cover the Sun as the
landscape is plunged into an eerie twilight, and the Sun's glorious corona is revealed for over two minutes.

     Dr. Espenak will present a detailed preview of this exciting event with maps, photos and weather prospects
along the eclipse path based on his recent book on the same subject.  He will also share some of his eclipse
experiences with us through photos and video.  Find out what it's like to stand in the Moon's shadow, and get ready
for 2017!  We will have a ringside seat, because maximum totality will be near Hopkinsville, Kentucky.  Start
planning your trip to see the eclipse!

Fred Espenak is a retired NASA astrophysicist from NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center,
where he worked with infrared spectrometers to probe the atmospheres of the planets.  He earned
a BS from Wagner College (NY) in 1974, and an MS from U. Toledo in 1976, both in physics.
His MS thesis was on eruptions and flares of red dwarf stars.   He has published over 40 peer-reviewed
scholarly articles in the astronomical literature, was a co-investigator on an atmospheric experiment flown
on the space shuttle Discovery, and over 100 other works ranging from contributions to annual versions of 
the ``Observer's Handbook of the Royal Astronomical Society", NASA technical reports/publications and
popular astronomy magazines.  In addition, he has authored or co-authored a number of books, including
``2017 Eclipse Bulletin", ``TOTAL Eclipse or Bust!: A Family Road Trip", ``Totality: Eclipses of the Sun",
``Get Eclipsed: The Complete Guide to the American Eclipse" [of 2017] and several over works. Fred Espenak
is also known as "Mr. Eclipse" because of his work on predicting and observing solar eclipses.
We honored him with our second Bullitt Lectureship, and are inviting him back because of
the historic eclipse next year. He has written over a dozen books on eclipses, including his most
recent "Eclipse Bulletin: Total Solar Eclipse of 2017 August 21."  Dr. Espenak also runs three websites on

eclipse prediction: www.EclipseWise.com
eclipse photography: www.MrEclipse.com
astrophotography: www.AstroPixels.com

Over the past 45 years, he has witnessed 26 total eclipses of the Sun.  In 2003, the International
Astronomical Union honored Dr. Espenak by naming asteroid 14120 after him.  He now lives in
Portal, Arizona, where he operates Bifrost Astronomical Observatory.

      We will record the lecture for our talk archive

The Physics & Astronomy Departmentís Bullitt Lecture is a free event aimed at the general
Since 2001, the Physics & Astronomy Departmentís Bullitt Lecture has presented a
distinguished astrophysicist to a Louisville audience in the Gheens Science Hall and Rauch
Planetarium.  Gale Christianson, Hubble's biographer at Indiana State,
planetary expert Hal Weaver, stellar astrophysicists  James Kaler of U. Illinois,
C. R. O'Dell of Vanderbilt and Caty Pilachowski of Indiana U,  cosmologists Fang Li Zhi of Arizona,
J. Richard Gott of
Princeton, Alan  Dressler of the Carnegie Observatories and lunar experts
Ferenc Pavlics of GM and the Apollo project and Phillip Abel of NASA have been Bullitt Lecturers.

College and high school students, teachers, and many others from the community interested in
the impact and excitement that astrophysics has generated have attended Bullitt Lectures in
large numbers. The public and members of the University community are warmly invited!

The Lecture is endowed through a grant from the family of William Marshall Bullitt, the
Solicitor General of the United States under President William Howard Taft.  Here is
a brief biography and description of his connection to the University of Louisville.

Several of the 2006-2008 popular and Bullitt lectures are available in streaming (.asx) format in the
UL astronomy talk archive.

Many of the later Bullitt Lectures (from 2009 onward) are linked at the Louisville Astro talk
archive here.
Posters for all of the current and previous Bullitt Lectures are available:
2001 Gale Christianson, "Edwin Hubble: An Astronomer's Life"
2002 Fred Espenak, "Solar Eclipses and Mysteries of the Sun"
2003 James Kaler, "The Life and Death of Stars"
2004 Fang Li Zhi, "Dark Energy in the Universe"
2005 J. Richard Gott, "A Map of the Universe"
2006 Alan Dressler, "Galaxies, Stars, Planets and Life: the Birth of the Modern Universe"
Dr.  Dressler was interviewed on Louisville's WFPL (NPR) radio on April 20, 2006 on State of Affairs, which has an archive edition of the radio interview. 
2007 C.R. O'Dell, "Creating the Hubble Space Telescope"
2008 Caty Pilachowski, "The Star Cities of the Milky Way"  flier
Dr. Pilachowski was interviewed on Louisville's WFPL (NPR) radio on October 29, 2008 on State of Affairs, which has an archive edition of the radio interview. 
2009 Ferenc Pavlics and Phillip Abel, "40 Years: Lunar Exploration"  flier
Mr. Pavlics and Dr. Abel were interviewed on Louisville's WFPL (NPR) radio on October 8, 2009 on State of Affairs, which has an archive edition of the radio interview. 
2010 Don York, "The History of the Telescope and Its Relation to Culture"
The Louisville Courier-Journal wrote a piece about the lecture in its Oct. 6, 2010 edition. poster
2011 Linda Spilker, "Cassini-Huygens explores the Saturn System: Recent Discoveries and Science Highlights" poster
2012 Kris Stanek
, "Measuring the Size and Age of the Universe" poster
     Interview on WFPL-NPR "Here and Now", 11 Oct 2012
2013 Virginia Trimble, "Blurring the Boundaries Among Physics, Chemistry and Astronomy:
   The Moseley and Bohr Centeneries" poster
2014 Rogier Windhorst, "The James Webb Space Telescope", poster article on WFPL-NPR, 16 Oct 2014
2015 Hal Weaver, "Exploring the Solar System's Third Zone" (results from the Pluto New Horizons and Comet 67P Rosetta missions) poster
  YouTube video (preliminary, undergoing edits)
2016 Fred Espenak, "The Great American Total Solar Eclipse of 2017"

Links to other Bullitt Lectures and Bullitt book collections:
Bullitt Lecture in Mathematics
Bullitt Lecture in Fine Arts
William Marshall Bullitt Collection of Rare Mathematics and Astronomy Books
More on the Bullitt Collection of Books at UofL