Morrill Hall to host Asteroid Day event June 29

Morrill Hall to host Asteroid Day event June 29

Concept of asteroids near the star Vega
Courtesy image | NASA
Concept of asteroids near the star Vega

A special Asteroid Day presentation will take place at 6 p.m. June 29 at the University of Nebraska State Museum at Morrill Hall, 645 N. 14th St.

The free event is presented by Morrill Hall’s Mueller Planetarium and the Nebraska College of Law Space, Cyber and Telecommunications Law program. It will include a welcome by Elsbeth Magilton, executive director of space, cyber and telecommunications law. She will discuss how the law college came to be involved in Asteroid Day and how law and policy play an important role in global efforts to track asteroids. Visitors can enjoy the shortened version of the official Asteroid Day film “51 Degrees North” and two fulldome planetarium shows, "Firefall" and "B612 Sentinel Program.”

Guests will receive free admission to Morrill Hall and Mueller Planetarium. The event is targeted for adults and teens, though children 8 and older may find it enjoyable. Children 3 and under are not permitted in the planetarium.

“We are fortunate to have nationally recognized experts on asteroid collision research here at the University of Nebraska,” said Susan Weller, museum director. “We are delighted to partner with our law school colleagues Frans von der Dunk and Elsbeth Magilton to promote public awareness of asteroid science through this annual event.”

Asteroid Day is a global movement to increase public awareness of potential asteroid collisions and how to protect Earth. The movement was cofounded in 2015 by Brian May, astrophysicist and lead guitarist for the rock band Queen; Apollo astronaut Rusty Schweickart; and German filmmaker Grig Richters. Asteroid Day is June 30 to mark Earth's largest asteroid impact in recorded history, the Siberia Tunguska event in 1908, which devastated more than 1,200 square miles, the size of a major metropolitan city.