Light pollution is one of important issue for astronomy outreach. The year 2015 is the International Year of light (IYL2015), the International Astronomical Union (IAU) recognize the importance of light for astronomy and supports that technology in the achievement of greater energy efficiency, in particular by limiting energy waste, and in the reduction of light pollution, which is key to the preservation of dark skies.

What is Globe at Night?

Globe at Night is an international citizen-science campaign to raise public awareness of the impact of light pollution by having people measure night-sky brightness and submit observations in real-time with smart phone or later with a computer. In 2019, Globe at Night runs for 10-nights each month, an hour after sunset til before the Moon rises. Students can use the data to monitor levels of light pollution around the world, as well as understand light pollution’s effects on energy consumption, plants, wildlife, human health and our ability to enjoy a starry night sky.

Since its inception in 2006, more than 185,000 measurements from 180 countries have been reported. The last 13 years of data can be explored with Globe at Night’s interactive world map or with the “map app” to view a particular area. A spreadsheet of the data is downloadable from any year. One can compare Globe at Night data with a variety of other databases to see, for example, how light pollution affects the foraging habits of bats. Consider participating in the Globe at Night campaign locally and together we can make a difference globally.

Globe at Night - Sky Brightness Monitoring Network (GaN-MN)

The GaN-MN project is a special project similar to Globe at Night but extend to set up global night sky brightness monitoring network using the commercial available meter SQM-LE by Unihedron for long term monitoring.

The project aims to:

  1. spread the night sky measurement method to overseas locations for worldwide research;
  2. highlight the negative environmental impacts of abusive artificial lighting for the general public and policy makers; and
  3. sustain light pollution public education and promote public engagement by live worldwide night sky brightness data and night sky measuring programs.

The target groups of the network include:

  1. Invited participants of the pilot program: research observatory and public planetarium professionals, through establishment of night sky brightness measuring stations in respective institutes;
  2. Light pollution public education: school students and the general public, through a public webpage and sharing of videos;
  3. Light pollution researchers: all data will be available to the general public after the completion of the project;
  4. Dissemination of results: local and international media outlets, through a joint press release with all participating institutes on the results of this global study; policy makers, to provide scientific backings to proposed measures to regulate abusive lighting uses

The GaN-MN project is framed under the umbrella of the IAU100 - the 100th anniversary of the International Astronomical Union (IAU).