Look up at the greatest show in the world!
With its unforgettable starry sky, astronomy museum, research observatory, and two observatories dedicated to the public (soon to be four), Mont Mégantic is one of the world’s major astro-tourist destinations. The embodiment of this vocation is ensured by the ASTROLab du Mont-Mégantic, a recognized scientific museum and initiator of the first International Dark Sky Reserve.
Through cultures and eras, the starry sky has always fascinated us. It is an open window on the mystery of the Universe and the enigma of our existences. An inexhaustible source of wonder and science. Astronomy is universal: it brings together all human beings, regardless of age or origin. We all live together among the stars.
- to raise awareness and introduce the population, and especially young people, to scientific and technical culture in the fields of astronomy, astrophysics, cosmology, aerospace and related disciplines;
- showcasing the results of research and technological advances in these areas (in particular those made at the Mont-Mégantic Observatory);
- increase interest in scientific and technical careers.
- Preserve access for all to the experience of the starry sky by taking charge of the Reserve.
- Astronomy evenings for the public and school groups since 1996;
- Guided tours of the Mont-Mégantic Observatory, an ultra-high definition multimedia room and exhibits on astronomy and cosmology.
- The Public Observatory, the Velan Observatory and a fleet of telescopes forming one of the largest public instrument parks in the world;
- The Festival d’astronomie populaire du Mont-Mégantic and the Festival des Perséides;
- Over 100 on-site school groups per year, and over 20,000 students reach online annually;
- More than 40,000 Facebook followers, and live astronomical social media events;
- The mission to preserve the dark sky experience for present and future generations;
- A territory of 5,300 km2, involving 34 municipalities and 3 MRCs;
- The concerted implementation of regulations on outdoor lighting limiting the impacts of light pollution, without compromises on safety;
- Multiple public and regional outreach efforts, as well as scientific and technical expertise;
- An entity managed by the ASTROLab and its partners (Sépaq, OMM, MRC, etc.) and certified by the International Dark Sky Association.
By supporting the ASTROLab, you participate in its mission of education and wonder: to discover the starry sky and share astronomy. You contribute to the culture and scientific literacy of young people and society. You encourage scientific communication in French. You support the fight against misinformation. You support a unique educational vocation in a unique environment.
Astronomy holds a unique potential to arouse the curiosity of students and the general public about the world around us. Often considered the “mother of all sciences”, it has profoundly influenced our world view, and the technical know-how it has developed has led to many innovations that are now part of our economy and our daily lives.
At a time when the big issues of our time cannot be understood without basic scientific literacy, and in a world where experiences of connecting with nature are rare for an increasing number of people, the mission of ASTROLab embodies positive and promising values for the future of our society.
Honorary patron : Steve MacLean
Founding president : Bernard Malenfant
Administrator and director: Dany Gareau
Philanthropic Campaign Manager : Marie-Georges Bélanger
Scientifique Coordinator and spokesperson : Sébastien Giguère
Honorary life member : Hubert Reeves
Your role: helping us share astronomy and the starry sky
In order to realize its full potential for education, the ASTROLab is now calling on the community to fund projects that are close to its heart.
Two projects to help us share the stars
Two major projects need your support to take off. They will allow thousands of people to experience a true starry sky, discover the wonders of astronomy and enrich their scientific culture.
Astronomical immersion experience at the top of Mont-mégantic
Astronomy evenings at the top of Mount Mégantic attract more visitors each year than can be accommodated with existing infrastructure. Recently funded, the Exosphere is a construction project of a dome of multimedia animation serving as an animation room and confortable safe space for the public, a signature place on the site of one of the most beautiful astronomical observation terrace in the world. Combine your contribution with the multimedia content component of this educational facility that houses a show hall where presentations will blend with the spectacle of mountains and starry skies.
- Collaborate to create a unique place of contemplation and education, located at 1,100 metres above sea level, in a protected natural environment, in the heart of the 1st International Dark Sky Reserve.
- Give more people access to the starry sky experience at the top of Mount Mégantic.
- Make a real contribution to society’s culture and scientific literacy.
- Enhance the glass dome:
- Place dedicated to scientific education (astronomy, geology, climate, environment).
- Experience in enhancing nature.
- Implementation of a high-level astronomy program for the general public.
- Optimization of the spherical shape of the room to offer an exclusive experiential multimedia experience.
live from Mont-Mégantic: sky and astronomy online, in French
Broadcast on social networks during the pandemic, Mont-Mégantic Live is dedicated to astronomy and the starry sky, education and wonder. Winner of the Association québécoise de l’interprétation du patrimoine prize and the Qilak prize of the Fédération des astronomes amateurs du Québec, this project generated more than 2.6 million views and more than 90,000 interactions in 2020-2021. Viewers were able to admire the Milky Way in real time, live nebulae from the telescopes, watch multimedia presentations, quizzes, interviews with guests, and ask questions on many topics.
This success confirms the immense potential of online astronomy activities in French. However, in the absence of sufficient resources, this project deployed during the period of the health measures had to be gradually set aside when operations resumed.
- Offer additional ways to develop and enrich the project.
- Enable the production of quality digital content in French and its dissemination in the Francophonie
- Contribute to the culture and scientific literacy of the Francophonie
- NOTE: Scientific education is well served among the English community. The ASTROLab desires to develop the French speaking community world wild, where there is place for improvment.