Russell (Russ) Dean Sampson
Co-Director of Wickware Planetarium

Associate Professor of Astronomy & Meteorology

 

 

    Office:  Science Building Room 459

    Phone:  860-465-0188

    Fax:      860-465-5213

    EmailSampsonR@easternct.edu

 

     EDUCATION

 Interdisciplinary Ph.D. (2001) Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences and Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Alberta, Thesis: Comparison of Photogrammetrically Determined Astronomical Refraction of Sunlight at High Zenith Angles with a Ray-tracing Computer Model Employing Rawinsonde Profiles.

     

    Masters of Science (1994) Specialization in Meteorology, Department of Geography, University of Alberta.

    Bachelor of Science, Math-Physics (1982) University of Alberta

 

     COURSES TAUGHT

 

  • ASTRONOMY 214 (Introduction to Astronomy with Lab), Tuesdays and Thursdays, 0930-1045, Lab Tuesdays and Thursdays 1230 - 1330, Spring and Fall

 

  • ASTRONOMY 225 (Stars and Galaxies), Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, 1100 -1150 Fall, 0900 - 0950 Spring and fall.

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  • PHYSICS 217 (Meteorology), Mondays, 1730 - 2015, fall only.

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  • ASTRONOMY 480 (Independent Studies in Astronomy).  This is a variable credit class that can be 1 to 4 credits depending on the agreed upon program for each student.  For example, a former Earth Sciences student studied the art, mythology and science of the rainbow - a phenomenon where the Earth and astronomy intersect.  The 'cap-stone' project for this student was the development of a computer model of a rainbow.

  

     RESEARCH INTEREST

  • Astronomical refraction of visible solar radiation at high zenith angles
  • Photogrammetric calibration of optical instruments
  • Science education (development of demonstrations and laboratory exercises)
  • Atmospheric optics and acoustics
  • The history of astronomy
  • Meteor astronomy  
  

PUBLICATIONS

   Refereed Publications

 

  • Sampson, R. D., (2007), Modeling Meteor Clusters, Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, 101, 57-58
  • Sampson, R. D., (2007), Estimating the Solar Apex using Stellar Radial Velocities – a Spreadsheet and Graphical Exercise for College Level Astronomy Classes, Astronomy Education Review, 6, 226-234 (read or download online paper at AER)
  • Sampson, R. D., Lozowski, E. P. and Machel, H., (2005), Variability in low altitude astronomical refraction (LAAR) from different geographic locations – progress towards a global map of  the variability in LAAR, Applied Optics, 44, 5652
  • Sampson, R. D., Peterson, A. E. and Lozowski, E. P., (2004), The Photogrammetric Calibration of a Consumer Grade Telescopic Lens for 0.1 Arcminute Astronomical Refraction Measurements, Geomatica, 58, 297 (Winner of the 2005 MDA Award for papers appearing in Geomatica)
  • Hill, L, Lozowski, E. and Sampson, R. D., (2004), Experiments on ice spikes and a simple growth model, Journal of Glaciology, 50, 375
  • Sampson, R. D.,Lozowski, E. P. and Peterson, A. E., and Hube, D. P, (2003) Variability in Astronomical Refraction of the Rising and Setting Sun, Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific, 115, 1256 - 1261. (see paper at NASA's ADS)
  • Sampson, R. D. Lozowski, E. P. and Peterson, A. E. (2003) A Comparison of Observed and Modelled Astronomical Refraction, Applied Optics 43, 342.
  • Sampson, R. D. Peterson, A. E. and Lozowski, E. P. (2002) Photogrammetric Calibration of a Consumer Grade Flatbed Scanner, Geomatica, 56, 121
  • Sampson, R. D., (2000) Astronomical Refraction and the Equinox Sunrise, Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, 94, 26 - 29 (see paper at NASA's ADS)
  • Sampson, R. D. and Couch, J.S., (1997), Elementary Methods for Estimating Astronomical Distances, Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, 91, 220-224. (see paper at NASA's ADS)
  • Sampson, R.D., Chung, K.K, Lozowski, E.P., (1996), A Simple Experiment to Estimate the Splash Mass Produced by a Free-falling Buoyant Sphere Impacting a Deep Quiescent Liquid, Journal of Colloid and Interface Science, 181, 673-675

 

   Non-Refereed Publications

 

  • Sampson, R. D. (2007) A Demonstration of Stellar Scintallation in the Planetarium, Journal of the International Planetarium Society, 36, p. 58 (March).
  • Sampson, R. D. (2007) (Book Review) Sky in a Bottle, Bulletin of the Canadian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society, 35, p. 20
  • Sampson, R. D. (2006) A Simple Aurora Projector, Journal of the International Planetarium Society, 35, p. 39 (September)
  • Sampson, R. D. (2005) (Book Review) Exploration of the Solar System by Infrared Remote Sensing, , Bulletin of the Canadian Meteorological and Oceanographic Society, 33, p. 181.
  • Sampson, R. D. (2003) The Visibility of Jupiter During the Day, Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, June 2003, p. 144
  • Sampson, R., (1996), Inside a Black Hole, Sky News, Jan./Feb., pp. 10-15.
  • Sampson, R., (1996), Solar Halos: Jewels of the Sky, Earth, October, pp. 54-60.
  • Sampson, R., (1994), Probing the Solar Chromosphere, Sky & Telescope, 88, November, pp. 76-77.
  • Sampson, R., (1993), Atmospheric Refraction and Sunrise and Sunset, Sky & Telescope, 85, February, pp. 96-97.
  • Sampson, R., (1992), The Aurora Borealis, Astronomy Magazine, March, pp. 38-42.
  • Honda, M. et al (1975) Discovery of Nova Cygni 1975, IAU Circular No. 2826 (see circular at NASA's ADS)

    I am a contributing editor of the News Notes section for the Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada where I write review articles on current astrophysical papers by Canadian researchers.

Recent Conference Presentations

 

  • (2007) The visibility of Jupiter & stars in the daytime sky with the unaided eye, 9th International Meeting on Light and Optics in Nature, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT, June 2007
  • (2007) Measuring the variability in low altitude astronomical refraction (LAAR) as a function of altitude using digital video images of sunrise & sunset, 9th International Meeting on Light and Optics in Nature, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT, June 2007
  • (2006) Teaching Meteorology to Non-major University Students - Exercises in Climate and Weather Analysis, First Annual Tri-state Meteorology Conference, Western Connecticut State University, Danbury, CT, October 2006.
  • (2006) Inexpensive Planetarium Projectors to Demonstrate the Aurora and Atmospheric Scintillation, Annual Conference of the Middle Atlantic Planetarium Society, Novins Planetarium, Toms River, NJ, May 2006
  • (2006) Celestial Navigation - A Planetarium Lab Exercise for Non-major University Astronomy Classes, Annual Conference of the Middle Atlantic Planetarium Society, Novins Planetarium, Toms River, NJ, May 2006
  • (2005) Astronomical Refraction, A Comparison of Historical Measurements, Connecticut State Universities, October 2005, Faculty Research Conference, CCSU New Britain, CT.
  • (2005) Measuring Dark Adaptation - A Planetarium Lab Exercise for Non-major University Astronomy Classes, Annual Conference of the Middle Atlantic Planetarium Society, Fels Planetarium, Philadelphia, PA, May 2005 (to download PowerPoint presentation go to http://www.maps-planetarium.org/ppt2005/DarkAdaptation.ppt )
  • (2004) (Invited Speaker) Near Horizon Astronomical Refraction in Barbados, 8th Congress of Meteorological Optics, Bad Honnef, Germany, June 2004
  • (2004) A Comparison of Modelled Near Horizon Astronomical Refraction with values in the Pulkovo Tables, 8th Congress of Meteorological Optics, Bad Honnef, Germany, June 2004
  • (2004) Astronomical Refraction of Sunrise and Sunset, Caribbean Institute for Meteorology and Hydrology, Barbados, January 2004
  • (2002) The 2001 Leonid Meteor Shower: Possible Exercises for Introductory University Astronomy Classes, National General Assembly of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Montreal.
  • (1998) (Invited Speaker), Napoleon and the 1797 Daylight Sighting of Venus, Royal Astronomical Society of Canada Astronomy Workshop, St. John's Academy, Alberta

 

Professional Memberships and Activities

 

     

 

Links

Dr. Sampson's insect images

Dr. Sampson's cloud and meteorological optics images

Dr. Sampson's Art Photography

Images of the June 2004 Transit of Venus

Wickware Planetarium

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