Astronomy, Photography and Weather
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News: IAA lecture programme continues alternate Wednesdays from September - an excellent programme of lectures- Queens University Belfast - Bell Lecture Theatre. Also keep an eye out for the Summer Events
 
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1  General Category / Photography / Re: Broadway Tower & High Street Night Shots on: January 27, 2012, 01:17:11 am
Very creative Anton. Love the 'angled' buildings in that first shot with Gemini & Orion adding a very nice finishing touch. 
2  General Category / Photography / Re: Star Trails & M42 on: January 27, 2012, 01:11:46 am
Two very impressive results there Anton. Looking at the length of the trails in that first shot I'm assuming that the exposure time must have been pretty lengthy - in which case you've done well to hold back the light pollution as far as possible without sacrificing any of the 'wanted' detail in the shot.

Just noticed the link to your website which looks very impressive. I shall bookmark it and have a proper look at the various galleries in detail later on.

I was beginning to think that the Plague had returned and wiped out all of the members here - so good to see a couple of new posts!  Grin
3  General Category / Astronomy & Space / Re: Perseids Meteor Shower on: August 13, 2011, 06:37:52 pm
Same here Mark - if it's of any consolation. However I did see a couple of bright meteors during my last session out on Tuesday morning. The sky was beautifully clear with the Moon well out of the way & the brightest one streaked towards the Pleiades. I had set up my 135mm camera lens to image the area around the Double Cluster/Soul & Heart nebulae area - with the vain hope that I may catch a Perseid streaking through the field. Alas, it was not to be. I've still to process my result but hope that others here had more success with the actual meteor shower.
4  General Category / Astronomy & Space / Re: Star Trail on: August 13, 2011, 06:28:06 pm
Looks like we were out at around the same time Anton!

10/10 for composition with the silhouetted scope in the foreground.
5  General Category / General Forum / Re: Thanks on: August 05, 2011, 05:22:21 pm
Thanks Richard. I'm glad that you find Dave's calendar useful. As I said to Dave several years ago when I first approached him about reproducing his calendar on other astro forums, I think that the amount of detail that he includes is just about right. I'm not exactly sure as to how long he has been producing his calendar but I reckon it must be at least ten years or so and I know that alot of us amateur astronomers, myself included, find it very useful indeed. So thanks Dave.  Smiley

Sorry about the lack of a reply facility in the 'Events' section Richard. When Paul kindly set it up for me, we decided that sealing off the reply facility would mean that the respective threads for each month would remain in chronological order for ease of reference (normally on forums when a particular thread is updated with a new post, it automatically jumps to the 'top of the queue' of the respective section - e.g. the 'Events' section on our forum). This of course would result in the originally chronological listing of dates becoming jumbled up & hence more confusing to follow/refer to.
6  General Category / Astronomy & Space / Re: Busy Sun!!! Ha Full Disks - 31st July on: August 05, 2011, 04:35:33 pm
Wow - where to look in those shots Mark!! Some stunning detail in both of those images & as Anton says, look forward to seeing more as & when conditions permit.
7  General Category / Astronomy & Space / Re: Telephoto Sunspots - Aug 3rd on: August 05, 2011, 04:30:08 pm
You've caught some superb detail in that Martin. Do you do much solar photography, as I don't recall having seen many (if any) in the past? Thanks also for the aurora alert update in your other thread. It would be great to see a light show from my city location/latitude over the next few nights.
8  General Category / Astronomy & Space / Re: Perseids Meteor Shower on: August 05, 2011, 04:19:32 pm
LOL I've just finished moaning on another thread about the timing of this month's full Moon/peak of the Perseids!  Grin However at least at this time of the year the Moon has a significant southerly declination when full and so does not rise very high for us 'northerners'. I've already seen a few Perseids from my city location - although I had not gone out with the specific intention of observing them. Best one was this morning (the small hours are always best for making observations as the meteors enter the Earth's atmosphere more 'head on') whilst I was admiring the return of the Pleiades.

Thanks for the reminder Mark & let's hope that the cloud gods give us a few clear nights to compensate for the Full Moon!

9  General Category / Astronomy & Space / Re: *Photo opportunity!* Garradd meets M15 on: August 05, 2011, 04:02:02 pm
Yes congratulations Anton. You have recorded a fair amount of detail there as well as showing how bright & destructive the cloud was for those of us attempting to image the comet. I must admit that I was a little disappointed in what I'd managed to record as I'd led myself to believe, mainly from having read observation reports on other forums, that it would look a tad grander.

August of 2011 certainly won't be remembered as the best August ever for observing/imaging bearing in mind that we have the peak of what is arguably the best meteor shower of the year coinciding with a Full Moon!!  Angry Sad
10  General Category / Astronomy & Space / Re: *Photo opportunity!* Garradd meets M15 on: August 04, 2011, 02:01:25 am
LOL Anton & Richard - at least neither of you managed to doze off before setting up!!

I woke up again at about 2am by which time I, too was being greeted by some high cloud & misty conditions. Luckily I had already printed off a couple of star maps earlier on & managed to set up my AstroTrac & star hop to M15 within a few minutes. Neither M15 or the comet were visible in my 6X30 finderscope but M15 quickly showed up on a test shot as a fuzzy star - so I knew that I had got the right field of view!

Richard congratulations on getting some lovely colour in your shot. My comet looked very anemic (perhaps it, too, had only just woken up!) though the images were littered with colourful hot pixels due to the humid conditions here last night. Anyway I just managed to record both comet & M15 - though the comet is really faint and because I only used my 300mm zoom lens in the end, the glob looks pretty stellar (though it began to reveal itself as a glob when I zoomed into it on my DSLR's LCD screen). Anyway, for what it's worth, here's my shot from last night.


I thought that I would also try (but failed!) to see if I could do a short animation to show the slight movement of the comet. However I rather liked the 'twinkly star' effect when I turned the animation to greyscale; the twinkle having been caused by the random hot pixels in each frame due to the humid conditions.


Anton hope you had the lovely clear skies that I've enjoyed tonight - though I see on Sat24.com that the cloud bringing tomorrow's predicted slightly damp weather is now racing in towards me!!
11  General Category / Astronomy & Space / *Photo opportunity!* Garradd meets M15 on: August 02, 2011, 08:31:43 pm
Although I'm enjoying a well overdue thunderstorm at present I'm hoping that the predicted clear slots for tonight will give me an opportunity to see/image a conjunction between Comet Garradd (C/2009 P1) and M15, a globular cluster in Pegasus.

I hope that these customized star maps from Starry Night Pro are legible as they show the relative positions of comet/cluster at just before midnight tonight (02/08/2011) BST (UT+1) and the same time tomorrow night - by which time the comet will be pulling away from M15.

The rectangular boxes show the approximate view of the conjunction through lenses of varying focal lengths ranging from 500mm (yellow) through to 135mm (red) with a 300mm field of view shown by the purple rectangular box. The orange circle shows the approximate view through a pair of 10X50 binoculars.


Comet Garradd (C/2009 P1) and M15 at just before 23:00 UT (midnight BST) on Tuesday 2 August 2011.



Comet Garradd (C/2009 P1) and M15 at just before 23:00 UT (midnight BST) on Wednesday 3 August 2011.

Good luck to everyone trying to observe/image this conjunction over the next couple of nights. Hopefully some of us will have some successful images & reports to share with the rest of us!
12  General Category / Weather & Atmospherics / Re: Lightning on: May 07, 2011, 07:05:41 am
Excellent shot Anton - love the sky colours in that.

Hopefully Mother Nature will send a thunderstorm or two in my direction this weekend.
13  General Category / Photography / Re: Downhill Beach on: May 03, 2011, 02:21:12 am
Looks like a very beautiful, unpolluted & relaxing location. Thanks for sharing.
14  General Category / Photography / Re: Big Gorse Fire on Glenshane Pass on: May 03, 2011, 02:17:47 am
Been hearing about these on the news. Hope they nab those responsible as soon as possible!  Angry

That issue aside, you've caught some very dramatic footage there Martin - well done.
15  General Category / Photography / Re: Sunset, Sunspots & Green Flash on: May 03, 2011, 02:13:06 am
Some beautiful shots there (I've always been a sucker for colourful sunsets) and for ticking the Green Flash off of your 'must get' items.
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