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Feedback stargazing evening (13/01/2018)

Feedback stargazing evening (13/01/2018)

Southern Cape Astronomy Club

The small amount of cloud as the Sun disappeared below the western horizon did not put a damper on the Club's first stargazing evening of the year. Visitors from Pearly Beach, Kleinbaai, and much later from De Kelders, were treated to some stunning views through the Club's recently acquired 12 inch telescope, as well as a tour of bright stars and constellations with the laser pointer. Seeing conditions were above average as the evening progressed and the Luminos eyepiece gave some gorgeous wide field of views of M42, Crab, Eta Car, 47 Tuc and Tarantula. This eyepiece just keeps on impressing, giving fantastic depth of field to these dso's, pretty much like a 3D view.

In all the years that I've operated/owned Meade telescopes I have never used the “identify” function on the hand controller. This was used for the first time to confirm the identification of Capella, brightest star in the constellation of Auriga (The Charioteer), that was seen twinkling brightly above the northern horizon. Binocular views had some guests convinced that we were looking at green and red flashing lights on an aircraft :-) It is easy enough to make this mistake, even fooling a military pilot who chased this “UFO” for a good half hour, but never catching up with it! Atmospheric refraction splits or refracts star light and this is more noticeable when it is close to the horizon, glinting red, green and whitish-blue.

After the De Kelders group left, and as usual, I stayed on till the wee hours enjoying the views, taking some images until the dew moved in. All in all a total of 11 visitors enjoyed the evening. Visitors are always welcome to the Club stargazing evenings, and also special astronomical events, as advertised. A warm thank you once again to the local media (Gansbaai Courant, Hermanus Times, Village News), for promoting the Club's stargazing events.

Some interesting reading of when stars become UFO's after the jump http://www.astronomyufo.com/UFO/UFOstars.htm
The small amount of cloud as the Sun disappeared below the western horizon did not put a damper on the Club's first stargazing evening of the year. Visitors from Pearly Beach, Kleinbaai, and much later from De Kelders, were treated to some stunning views through the Club's recently acquired 12 inch telescope, as well as a tour of bright stars and constellations with the laser pointer. Seeing conditions were above average as the evening progressed and the Luminos eyepiece gave some gorgeous wide field of views of M42, Crab, Eta Car, 47 Tuc and Tarantula. This eyepiece just keeps on impressing, giving fantastic depth of field to these dso's, pretty much like a 3D view.

In all the years that I've operated/owned Meade telescopes I have never used the “identify” function on the hand controller. This was used for the first time to confirm the identification of Capella, brightest star in the constellation of Auriga (The Charioteer), that was seen twinkling brightly above the northern horizon. Binocular views had some guests convinced that we were looking at green and red flashing lights on an aircraft. It is easy enough to make this mistake, even fooling a military pilot who chased this “UFO” for a good half hour, but never catching up with it! Atmospheric refraction splits or refracts star light and this is more noticeable when it is close to the horizon, glinting red, green and whitish-blue.

After the De Kelders group left, and as usual, I stayed on till the wee hours enjoying the views, taking some images until the dew moved in. All in all a total of 11 visitors enjoyed the evening. Visitors are always welcome to the Club stargazing evenings, and also special astronomical events, as advertised. A warm thank you once again to the local media (Gansbaai Courant, Hermanus Times, Village News), for promoting the Club's stargazing events.

Feedback stargazing evening (13/01/2018)

Kos Coronaios

Southern Cape Astronomy Club meets at least once a month for stargazing or observation evenings close to new Moon or during astronomical related events. The well-established club is based in Pearly Beach just outside Gansbaai. Click on ‘More Info’ below to find out more about Southern Cape A...

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