Stargazing Live - North Essex - 3, 4, 5 & 8 Jan 2011

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The Bat
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Stargazing Live - North Essex - 3, 4, 5 & 8 Jan 2011

Post by The Bat »

North Essex Astronomical Society will be running several public observing sessions to coincide with BBC Stargazing Live.

Weather permitting, on 3rd, 4th and 5th Jan, we will be at Great Notley Discovery Centre from 5pm onwards.
On 8th Jan we are hosting solar observing from 12pm rolling into evening observing at Cressing Temple Barns.

Entry is free.

http://www.neas.me.uk

All observing events are subject to clear sky.

Note added 7th Jan: weather is looking decidedly better from mid-afternoon onwards so the plan is to have solar observing when the skies clear and evening observing when the skies darken. An indoor display will be available during the possibly rainy beginning to the afternoon.
Last edited by The Bat on Fri Jan 07, 2011 7:48 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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North Essex Astronomical Society
David Frydman
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Post by David Frydman »

The Stargazing Live on BBC 2 was quite good. Perhaps we will get a few more amateur astronomers because of it. I don't know how the weather was generally. Let us hope it keeps getting clearer.

Regards, David
stella
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Post by stella »

"Weather permitting, on 3rd, 4th and 5th Jan, we will be at Great Notley Discovery Centre from 5pm onwards."

5 p.m. on Jan 4, will find the International Space Station in the sky.
Worth comparing its brightness with Jupiter.
The Bat
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Post by The Bat »

We had a fantastic turnout, even though we had blanket cloud cover. Lots of interest in the scopes on display and in the imaging side of things. Hope for a similar turnout tonight, but I fear we will be just as unlucky with the weather.

Rachel
Celestron C8-S XLT
CG5 mount, dual axis motor driven
Imaging Source DFK21AF04.AS camera
North Essex Astronomical Society
Davej
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Post by Davej »

Hi Rachel,
Glad you had a good turnout, shame about the cloud, hope it was clear for tonights session (Wed 5th). Good to see more people showing interest.
stella wrote:"Weather permitting, on 3rd, 4th and 5th Jan, we will be at Great Notley Discovery Centre from 5pm onwards."

5 p.m. on Jan 4, will find the International Space Station in the sky.
Worth comparing its brightness with Jupiter.
Stella, I had some clear gaps in the cloud which allowed me to see Jupiter and the ISS at the same time (17.24 UT pass) tonight (Wed). The ISS brightness was predicted to be -3.3 (HA) and Jupiter was -2.3 yet they looked very much the same to me. Never been very good at estimating magnitudes but I didn't think there was one mag. difference between them.
All the best
Dave
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stella
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Post by stella »

"Stella, I had some clear gaps in the cloud which allowed me to see Jupiter and the ISS at the same time (17.24 UT pass) tonight (Wed). The ISS brightness was predicted to be -3.3 (HA) and Jupiter was -2.3 yet they looked very much the same to me. Never been very good at estimating magnitudes but I didn't think there was one mag. difference between them."

Hi Dave,
Unlike the stars (which remain virtually constant in brightness), the
orbiting satellites can vary considerably in magnitude. So visual estimates
can be made with little or no fear of contradiction. So it's good to see
your reporting on this comparison. If other observers confirm your
findings then HA would have to adjust their predictions. The continued
enlargement of ISS has meant that it has got brighter over the years,
but HA were slow to change their standard magnitude, and when they
got around to doing it, they probably overdid the increase. It is only
on the basis of further estimates that predictions can be brought into
line with observations.
The Bat
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Post by The Bat »

Total cloud cover three nights in a row. What a shame. But, amazingly, people still kept coming! Not as great a turnout on the second and third nights, but as most people were starting back to work it was not surprising. Still, a steady stream of people, and even though we couldn't see anything, there was still a lot of interest in the different telescopes. Quite a few people came who had some interest in astronomy but had not known how to get started or whom to contact, and some who had telescopes but didn't know how to make the most of them. It's been good for the society this week and I really hope we see new faces at our next public meetings.

Fingers crossed that we get to do some observing at our final event on Saturday. Looks like it could be clear in the evening so far. Although most people were understanding, there was some obvious disappointment that people couldn't actually look through the telescopes.

Rachel
Celestron C8-S XLT
CG5 mount, dual axis motor driven
Imaging Source DFK21AF04.AS camera
North Essex Astronomical Society
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