Yearly archives: 2013

Observing Session: 28, December

Having woken at 4am this morning a quick glance through the window showed stars is abundance.  There aren’t many things that will get me up at ‘Stupid O’Clock’ but Comet ISON is one of them. However…..the wheels started to come off  from the start! The mount decided to loose its alignment model, so did a cold start and tried to rebuild it. Unfortunately, the Red Dot finder batteries were dead, so it took two…


Geminid Meteor Scatter Observations: 29, November – 18, December

Having had a problem with the data collection during the Leonids in November, I’m glad that my Geminid observations over the last two weeks seems to have been successful.As I mentioned in my entry on 3, November, I wanted to use the output from the Plotter rather than the scripted output of SpectrumLab.  The reasons for this are : The Plotter output can be set to record a minimum and maximum power reading every…


Observing Session 21, November

Its seems like an age since I was able to open up the observatory and look through a telescope….and I’m right. The 3, November was the last time . Even more amazing was that the technology didn’t go tits up. I fired everything up, slewed to my first star and the target was well within the FOV of a 40 eyepiece.  Apparently, I was not the only one who’s first outing for a while went…


What Balmy Autumnal Evenings?

Well apart from one session out at the scope in early September, the weather these last  seven weeks has been dire.  I’ve got to go back to December of last year when I was only able to get out once during a month.  November looks as though it’s going to be even worse, with not one clear night so far. While we have had lots of clear skies during the day, the  relatively high…


DIY Radio Astronomy: Perseids 2013

For a number of years, my -not so local any more  Astronomy Club – Kernow Astronomers, have held a BBQ on the eve of , or very close to the eve of,  the Perseid Meteor Shower. The weather on most of these occasions has generally been poor and at worst we’ve been clouded right out. When it has been clear we have seen a lot of cloud about so have had to  resort to…


Observing Session: 3, September

Now, that’s much better. With August now behind us, the transparency seems to have returned and this evening it was good to be able to see some galaxies again.Finishing of all the objects in Sagittarius is still proving to be a problem. I only have M55 to go, but every time I’ve tried to observe it, either trees are in the way, or the ground hugging murk that M55 lies in impossible to make…


Observing Session: 31, August

Another really poor August session, with the transparency being only slightly better than the one I had on the 25th August. While there are only two objects listed in this session, I did try for a few more Caroline Herschel Galaxies, but failed to make them out. Session Data Date: 31/08/2013Time: 20:22 – 21:21 UTTemp: 11.0c, Air Pressure: 1025Mb, Humidity: 83%, Dew point: 8.2c, Wind Speed: 5.0 MPH . Seeing: I Perfectly  Stable, Transparency: Somewhat Clear….


Observing Session: 25, August

August is proving to be an awful month for observational astronomy.  While it seems clear, its been warm and very humid so transparency has been particularly bad. With the Moon up again, the light scatter, renders most things except Open Clusters,  either invisible, or so poor that it’s not even worth recording.Becoming really discouraged  and I find myself wishing Winter was back. There maybe fewer clear nights, but at least it is less humid.  Not…


Observing Session: 16, August

Tonight was one of those Keyhole Astronomy sessions, where you observe through the gaps in between slowly moving banks of cloud.  While this wasn’t a problem, the 77% illuminated Moon was! I’m still struggling to complete the remaining items in Sagittarius (M69 and M70)  as these are all pretty much on the horizon when I’m able to observe them.  There was a little low murk above the horizon, but this seemed magnified by the effects…


Observing Session: 26, July

Moon is up and rising in the East  77%  Illumination. Conditions are quite awful. High and not so thin cloud is abundant  but, there are patches through which I can observe – I think it’s called ‘Keyhole Astronomy’. Still trying to observe last few Sagittarius  objects but the cloud patches weren’t playing ball for anything below 30 degrees above the horizon and other Messier objects still to be ticked off at higher declinations, were…