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Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics

Special Events

Welcoming Reception – Mon., Jan. 27, 5:30 pm
Univ. of Arizona lab tours – Wed., Jan. 29, 1-4 pm
Science Dinner – Thur., Jan. 30, 5:20 pm 

Welcoming Reception

Monday, Jan. 27, 5:30 – 6:45 p.m.

Tucson Marriott University Park

Please join us as we kick-off the 2020 Sun-Climate Symposium!

Light appetizers and a cash bar provided.

University of Arizona – two special tours!

Wednesday, Jan. 29, 1-4 pm


We have arranged two wonderful tours at the University of Arizona to see their world-class mirror and tree-ring laboratories.  There is time for you to attend both if you would like (two groups of 30 people swapping tours during the afternoon).  We will walk to the University (about 15 minutes) and walk in between the two labs on campus (about 15 minutes apart).  Join us for this special opportunity to see these outstanding facilities!  You can sign up on the Registration Form ($5/tour).

Richard F. Caris Mirror Laboratory

A team of scientists and engineers are making giant, lightweight mirrors of unprecedented power for a new generation of optical telescopes. Not like conventional solid-glass mirrors, they have a honeycomb structure on the inside; made out of Ohara E6-type borosilicate glass that is melted, molded and spun cast into the shape of a paraboloid in a custom-designed rotating oven. Honeycomb mirrors offer the advantages of their solid counterparts – rigidity and stability – but they can be significantly larger, and dramatically lighter. The Mirror Lab team has also developed a revolutionary new method to polish the honeycomb mirrors with a deeply curved, parabolic surface that results in much shorter focal lengths than conventional mirrors.

The Mirror Lab continues its impressive history of successful, ground breaking mirror castings with the Giant Magellan Telescope. This telescope will be the largest and most advanced earth-based telescope in the world when complete.  Currently, five of the seven 8.4 meter segmented mirrors have been cast. The first mirror is complete and the other four are in various stages of production.

For more information, visit:

Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research (LTRR)

Led by Andrew Ellicott Douglass in 1937, the scientific study of tree-rings in America was formalized by the creation of the LTRR at the University of Arizona. Since then they have helped to establish many dendrochronology labs around the world. Dendrochronology is the dating and study of annual rings in trees, and scientists use tree rings to answer questions about the natural world and the place of humans in its functioning. Their research helps to: 1) put the present in proper historical context, 2) better understand current environmental processes and conditions, and 3) improve understanding of possible future environmental issues.

Ring-counting alone does not ensure the accurate dating of each individual ring, which can lead to incorrect conclusions. One of the techniques used by the LTRR is call “cross-dating” using a skeleton plot to match ring growth characteristics across many samples. Through their work, LTRR is making significant contributions to understanding natural environmental variability in climate, hydrologic, geomorphic, and ecological systems.

For more information, visit:

2020 Sun-Climate Symposium Science Dinner

Hacienda del Sol Guest Ranch

Thursday, Jan. 30 — Reception 5:40 pm, Sunset 5:55 pm, Dinner 6:15 pm


Our science dinner will be a perfect opportunity to see the beautiful Sonora Desert up close at the historic Hacienda del Sol Guest Ranch. Located on the edge of Tucson in the Catalina foothills, we will experience their award-winning culinary creations! We have selected a limited menu of their most popular dishes. Please mark your entrée selection on the Registration Form.

Carne AsadaMarinated Flank Steak, Pico de Gallo, Salsa Verde
Grilled SalmonChive Horseradish Beurre Blanc / Chasseur Sauce
Grilled Vegetable EnchiladasCorn Tortillas, Grilled Assorted Squashes, Chilis, Tomatoes, Cheese, Salsa Verde Cilantro Rice & Beans

Tickets: $50. Reservations are required.  Fee includes bus transportation, light reception, and dinner. Please sign up and pay for this event on the Registration Form. Everyone is encouraged to attend and guests are welcome.

Please join us!