Stars For Citizens With Urban Star Parks and Lighting Specialists

General context
One hundred years ago, almost nobody imagine a life without stars every night even in the urban areas. Now, to see a starry sky is a special event for urban citizens.

It is possible to see the stars even inside cities? Yes, but for that we need star parks and lighting specialists as partners.

Educational aspect
The citizens must be able to identify the planets, constellations and other celestial objects in their urban residence. This is part of a basic education. The number of the people living in the urban area who never see the main constellations or important stars increase every year. We must do something for our urban community.

What is an urban star park?
An urban public park where we can see the main constellations can be considered an urban star park. There can be organized a lot of activities as practical lessons of astronomy, star parties, etc.

Classification of the urban star parks
A proposal for classification of the urban star parks taking in consideration the quality of the sky and the number of the city inhabitants: Two categories:

  • city star parks for cities with < 100.000 inhabitants
  • metropolis star parks for cities with > 100.000 inhabitants

Five levels of quality:

  • 1* level = can see stars of at least 1 magnitude with the naked eyes
  • 2* level = at least 2 mag
  • 3* level = at least 3 mag
  • 4* level= at least 4 mag
  • 5* level = at least 5 mag

The urban star urban park structure and lighting system
A possible structure of a urban star park and sky-friend lighting including non-electric illumination are descripted.

The International Commission on Illumination
A description of this structure which has as members national commissions from all over the world.

Dark-sky activists - lighting specialists
National Commissions on Illumination organize courses of lighting specialist. Dark-sky activists can become lighting specialists. The author shows his experience in this aspect as a recent lighting specialist and his cooperation with the Romanian National Commission on Illumination working for a law of illumination in Romania and to implement the sky protection elements into the lighting specialist accreditation.

Valentin Grigore

AUTHORS/INSTITUTIONS: V. Grigore, The Romanian Society for Meteors and Astronomy, Targoviste, Dambovita, ROMANIA


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