Astronomy in morocco past and present

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Astronomy in Morocco
Astrolabs from Morocco
GHOU educational program in Morocco

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  • Fez: its scholars introduced astronomy and medecine to the west via spain when it was under Moorish rule. Historians of the time said that Plato and Aristotle first reached Western Europe in Arabic translations, from Fez.
  • its scholars introduced astronomy and medecine to the west via spain when it was under Moorish rule. Dar Al Magana, sundials in mosques Sundials in mosques
  • It’s exceptional and worldly known.
  • Brass and Stone, It was made for a “jurist and noble scribe” and features lines for the Muslim prayer times.
  • Astronomy in morocco past and present

    1. 1. Astronomy in Morocco Past and Present H. Darhmaoui Al Akhawayn University
    2. 3. Al Qarawiyyin University in Fez, founded by a lady named Fatima Fihriyya in the year 245 A.H. (middle of 9th century) Its scholars introduced astronomy and medecine to the west via spain when it was under Moorish rule. Historians of the time said that Plato and Aristotle first reached Western Europe in Arabic translations, from Fez.
    3. 4. Al Qarawiyyin gave birth not just to religious scholars. It also produced great jurists, hadith specialists, historians, mathematicians, time observation experts , astronomers , physicians, ascetics, doctors literature, language and poets. Historians of the time said that Plato and Aristotle first reached Western Europe in Arabic translations, from Al Qarawiyyin in Fez.
    4. 5. Astrolabe made by Abu Behr Ibn Yussuf from Morocco in 1208 ( 605 H). The instrument is complete and its disks allow sky watching from different latitudes (Now displayed in the Strasbourg Observatory, France) http://planetarium.u-strasbg.fr
    5. 6. A remarkable and sophisticated example of a ‘universal’ astrolabe, that is, one that can be used in any latitude, of a type described by Islamic Mathematicians in Toledo ( az-Zarqali known as Arzachel, 11th century ) . This very rare example dates from 1327 and was made in Morocco http://www.mhs.ox.ac.uk/africa/html/astrolabe.htm
    6. 7. Manufactured in the Maghrib, 13th century. The back has a universal projection and so can be used in any latitude http://www.mhs.ox.ac.uk/africa/html/astrolabe.htm
    7. 8. Astrolabe made by Muhammad ibn Ahmad-al-Battuti, Morocco, 1728 http://www.mhs.ox.ac.uk/africa/html/astrolabe.htm
    8. 9. This astrolabe has been attributed to al-Battuti dated 1770-71 (AH1136). Displayed in the National Maritime Museum Ref.: http://www.nmm.ac.uk/collections
    9. 10. Unsigned astrolabe from North Africa, dating from the early 18th century. According to an inscription on the back, it belonged to the great Mosque of Tangiers
    10. 11. Astrolabe Quadrant , 1804 Made by 'Abdallah Ahmad, born 'Alî al-Andalusî , Moorish It is inscribed ‘for the region of Meknes’ (Morocco), and is for the latitude of 34°. The back features a sine and cosine graph. http://www.mhs.ox.ac.uk/students/03to04/Astrolabes/Starholder_astronomy.html
    11. 12. Current Astronomy in Morocco (2007) <ul><li>Four universities offer graduate programs in astronomy(Casablanca, Marrakech, Rabat and Oujda) </li></ul><ul><li>Two small observatories (Oukaimeden, Rabat) </li></ul><ul><li>Fields of Interest of Moroccan astronomers: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Solar Oscillations (helioseismology) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Astroparticles, cosmic radiation (high energy physics) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Astroclimatology </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Near earth objects and search for supernovae </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Around 20 astronomy amateur clubs </li></ul>
    12. 13. High Energy Physics & Astrophysics Laboratory – University Cadi Ayyad Marrakech Founded in 1988 350 mm telescope Longitude: 7° 52´52 West Latitude: 31° 12´32 North Height: 2700 meters Oukaimeden Observatory
    13. 14. Rabat Observatory Founded in 1999 510 mm telescope Two C8 200 mm robotic telescopes Two 110 mm and 60 mm telescopes CCD camera SBIG7
    14. 15. Astronomy Education Initiative at Al Akhawayn University in Ifrane Moroccan–HOU
    15. 16. Hands-On Universe (HOU) <ul><li>The concept of ”Hands-On Universe” founded in Berkeley by Prof. Carl Pennypacker </li></ul><ul><li> www.handsonuniverse.org </li></ul>
    16. 17. Moroccan –HOU Astronomy Education Initiative at Al Akhawayn University in Ifrane <ul><li>Promote science as an exciting learning activity </li></ul><ul><li>Foster scientific vocations </li></ul><ul><li>Promote the scientific method </li></ul>Goals: Promote and develop astronomy education in Morocco Help increase the interest of students for science and technology
    17. 18. <ul><li>Enlighten the importance and role of astronomy education in general. </li></ul><ul><li>Develop astronomy resources adapted to the Moroccan educational system (courses, software, activities) </li></ul><ul><li>Training of science teachers/educators in the field of astronomy </li></ul><ul><li>Arrange special activities/events for students and teachers interested in astronomy </li></ul>Moroccan –HOU Astronomy Education Initiative at Al Akhawayn University in Ifrane
    18. 19. Why astronomy? <ul><li>Fascination (images, dimensions, strange objects …) </li></ul><ul><li>Everywhere in physics curricula, also math. </li></ul><ul><li>Important role in history of sciences (Galileo, Kepler, Newton, Einstein) </li></ul><ul><li>Provide lots of exercices </li></ul><ul><li>Can satisfy the taste for « concrete » of pupils </li></ul>
    19. 20. <ul><li> convince local ministry of education to add modules of astronomy in the new curriculum </li></ul><ul><li>Target: Moroccan high school science students </li></ul><ul><li>(so far no astronomy course/module offered in Moroccan high schools) </li></ul>Moroccan –HOU Plans and Prospects
    20. 21. <ul><li>Plans: </li></ul><ul><li>Start a pilot project with this program in few high schools all around the country (3 to 4 years trial) </li></ul><ul><li> implement modules from HOU educational program </li></ul><ul><li>New astronomy course at Al Akhawayn University based on HOU program </li></ul><ul><li>Internships, capstone design projects in astronomy for our university senior students </li></ul><ul><li> encourage our students to do astronomy graduate studies and help developing this field in Morocco in the near future </li></ul>Moroccan –HOU Plans and Prospects
    21. 22. <ul><li>Prospects: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Moroccan students will engage in doing observational astronomy and develop scientific reasoning and methodology. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>They will be part of a world wide network of students working on a scientific activity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li> international community building, belonging, communication etc.. </li></ul></ul>Moroccan –HOU Plans and Prospects
    22. 23. <ul><li>Expected challenges: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Language barrier </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Teachers training </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>IT facilities in schools </li></ul></ul>Moroccan –HOU Plans and Prospects
    23. 24. THANK YOU

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