Astronomy Cafe – July 12, 2021

Posted by as Astro Cafe

Transcript video of the meeting

Mike Nash and Randy Enkin hosted a special Lunar Session,  joined by special guests Brian Day and Gary Varney.

Brian is deputy staff scientist at NASA’s Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute. He manages data visualization and analysis projects supporting missions including Artemis. He was Education/Public Outreach lead for the LCROSS and LADEE lunar missions and has participated in various Mars analog field studies.

Gary is an amateur astronomer, planetary astrophotographer, creator of Amateur Astronomy Selenology Project on Facebook, owner/operator Varney Observatory in Pembroke Pines, Florida, and works as Telescope Technician at OPT. Online photo gallery

  • Intro – Randy Enkin
    • Clavius photos by Mike Nash & Gary Varney
    • Amateur Astronomy Selenology Project – review of the Lunar 100
    • Gary Varney and Brian Day intros
  • Lunar Imaging – Gary Varney
    • Lunar Processing Overview video
      • AutoStakkert demo
      • Registax – demo of wavlet sharpening
      • Photoshop – demo of finishing the image
    • Filters
      • Green – helps with ghosting
      • IR650 or IR742 – improvements over standard seeing
    • Completing the Lunar 100 photographically – Gary’s current mission
  • NASA’s Lunar Tools & Missions – Brian Day
    • Mare Crisium – Horseshoe Crater is a breached cinder cone
    • NASA buying commercial “rides” – Firefly Aerospace
    • Moon Trek – online tool for analyzing lunar data from missions
      • GIS for the Moon
      • Generate an STL file for a 3D print of the lunar surface features
      • Draw a path – QR code to flythrough using generic Google goggles on a smartphone 
      • Fly-to features
      • Data layers – helps to interpret the surface features
      • Also displays data from other solar system objects
    • Viper mission to the Moon – rover in 2023
      • Prospecting for water-ice
      • Want amateur photos of the mission area on the south pole
    • Missions to other areas of the Moon
    • 2 landings per year coming up soon
  • Q&A to Brian and Gary
    • US-based teachers can borrow lunar samples for the classroom
    • Touchable Moon rock (fallen to Earth) can be made available
    • Dial-a-Moon – online tool for finding lunar features
  • Lunar imaging – Mike Nash
    • Mostly using a big refractor 
    • 7″ or 8″ Mak for higher resolution
    • Filters – uses various, depending on conditions
    • Daytime lunar imaging is working well
  • Lunar poem by Bruce McCurdy – read by Peter Jedicke
  • Variable Star observing – David Lee
  • Edmonton astrophotos – Dave Robinson
    • Pumpkin Moon rising over Edmonton – Alister Ling & Luca Vanzella
    • Etruscan vase or omega effect with the Sun setting or rising over the ocean – query by Peter Geldart from Ottawa Centre
    • Jupiter and moon time lapse video – Abdur Anwar
  • Other photo sharing
    • Mars, Venus &  Crescent Moon – Brian Day
    • Venus &  Crescent Moon – Logan Grauer, Alec Lee
    • Ha image of  solar prominences, the Sun & ISS – Brian Day
    • Comet NEOWISE  C/2020 F3 – a tribute video by Debra Ceravolo 
    • Jupiter, moons and shadows – Gary Varney
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