Astronomy Cafe – July 20, 2020

Posted by as Astro Cafe

Video transcript of the meeting

While Waiting for Neowise by Dan Posey

North America Nebula region
This is a 6 minute test (12x30s) of the North America Nebula with a light pollution filter from Mt. Tolmie. Shot with my Sigma 105 at f2 and my Canon Ra at iso 640

Comet Neowise: An Urban Challenge by John McDonald

Comet Neowise captured from my 8th floor patio in Ross Place. 2020-07-13 Canon Ra with 24-105mm at lens at fl of 105mm on Skytracker mount. Single exposure at f/4 for 3.2s at ISO 640.
Stack of 10 subs cropped from a full frame showing detail of Comet Neowise captured from my 8th floor patio in Ross Place. 2020-07-13 Canon Ra with 24-70mm lens on Skytracker mount. Combination of 10 frames taken at f/4 for 3.2s at ISO 640. Processed in ACR and Photoshop. Comet was aligned and stars and combined with stars from a single image.
From FaceBook by By Ian Terris with thanks from Marnie Essery
Comet Neowise reflecting over Thetis Lake.

UVic Astronomy Open House 7:30PM Wednesday

The zoom guest link (with password embedded) is:
https://zoom.us/j/97173236268?pwd=V2hhYTAwVVY5cXl5eEFoOUxSYmZGdz09

Bigger, better, faster: how changes in technology drive astronomy data collection by Nat Comeau

Abstract: There are roughly five variables of interest in observational astronomy: where the object was (sky position), what it looked like (spatial resolution), when it was seen (observation time), how bright it was (brightness), and what colour of light it was (spectral resolution). In this talk I’ll give an overview of how enhancements in technology have driven how precisely we can measure these five variables, and how increasing this precision unlocks wonders that were previously invisible to us. From the first naked eye measurements of the planets, to automated networks of telescopes working hand in hand with gravitational wave observatories, I will describe how far we’ve come in astronomy data collection and how much more there is to do​.

Observing

Astronomy Cafe – July 13, 2020

Posted by as Astro Cafe

Transcript video

Comet NEOWISE C/2020 F3

RASC Victoria members’ photos of Comet NEOWISE C/2020 F3

More Victoria RASCal images and sketches of Comet NEOWISE C/2020 F3

Bill Weir sketched Comet Neowise from Taylor Beach, Metchosin on the evening of July 12th.
Comet Neowise C/2020 F3 above the glare of Oak Bay Marina at 11:15PM on July 12th by Reg Dunkley
Non tracked 55 mm lens on Canon T3i. 5 Sec at ISO 3200
From Bamberton: Nathan writes: My dad got a picture with his Pentax K1 with a Macro 1:2.8 100mm (weather resistant) lens, with a 20 second exposure, an F5.6, and ISO 800, mounted on with an Astro tracer.
From the top of Mount Douglas on July 12th by Remi Odense
From Majestic Park on July 12th by Remi Odense
Lauri Roche captured Neowise this morning about 12:15 am. Lauri writes: I didn’t have to go far: the balcony of my townhouse. Struggling with aperture, ISO, focussing and an old camera but at least it’s there.
Comet C/2020 F3 Dawn July 13 2020
David Lee writes: I was determined to see if I could see more detail in the comet this morning so I brought the Star Adventurer tracker with me. As with most of my imaging adventures something goes wrong. This morning I tried a different mounting not realizing my orientation of the camera would be limited. Usually not a problem when your subject is isolated with no landscape. So my composition is a bit crooked. With this exposure the stars are peaking through and the second tail is more apparent.
Camera: Nikon Z6 Lens: Nikkor 24-70/4 set at 70mm Sensor ISO: 4000
Exposure: 13 seconds at f/4 Processing: Adobe Photoshop CC Tracking: Skywatcher Star Adventurer
Dorothy Paul captured this image 3:30AM on July 12th from the bench at Hollydene Park at the east end of Arbutus Cove.
Dorothy Paul sketched Neowise at 3:30AM on July 12th from the bench at Hollydene Park at the east end of Arbutus Cove
Dorothy and Miles Paul walked down to Hollydene Park an hour earlier this morning than yesterday. The comet was even better positioned than yesterday for viewing from the bench at the end of the path, overlooking Haro Strait.

Useful Comet Websites

The following websites are a rich source of information about visible comets including Comet NEOWISE C/2020 F3. Check them out:

The Sky Live https://theskylive.com/comets

Comet Chasing has excellent finder charts: https://cometchasing.skyhound.com

Computer Science in Astronomy: A UVic Open House Webinar

You are invited to attend the Wednesday UVic Open House which starts at 7:30PM. This week student Sarah Clapoff is talking about the important role of comp sci in astronomy. The zoom guest link (with password embedded) is:
https://zoom.us/j/97173236268?pwd=V2hhYTAwVVY5cXl5eEFoOUxSYmZGdz09

Image may contain: 1 person, text

Observing

Astronomy Cafe – July 6, 2020

Posted by as Astro Cafe

Transcript video

Views from Doug Hardy’s Deck

Doug used a Canon 60Da and a Sigma 10-20 zoom at 10mm looking eastward from his deck in Downtown Victoria. He captured a nice conjunction of the Moon, Jupiter and Saturn. A red light from Trial Island is visible.
Doug then turned around and looked almost straight up there were very interesting clouds tangled up with the dipper. Since the shot was taken at 1:30 AM those clouds are not illuminated by the sun. They might resemble noctilucent clouds but are probably much lower cirrus cloud illuminated by the Moon.

David Lee’s Creamsicle Moon

Could Creamsicles overtake Viva Puffs to become the favourite Astro Cafe summer treat? Penumbral Eclipse July 4. 2020 Billed as a subtle eclipse the penumbral shadow is subtle. What David didn’t expect was the orange ball that emerged from the horizon. A nice creamsicle colour! Camera: Nikon Z6 with FTZ adapter Lens: Nikkor 300/4 AFS with 1.4 x TC Effective 420mm cropped. Sensor ISO: 1600. Exposure: 1/100 sec at f/5.6
Processing: Adobe Photoshop CC 2020

Martian Citizen Science: Zoom Webinar at 11AM Tuesday

Meg Schwamb (Queen’s University Belfast) will be speaking about “Exploring Mars with 150,000 Earthlings.”

Planet Four (http://www.planetfour.org) and Planet Four: Terrains (http://terrains.planetfour.org) are citizen science projects mining Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) images to explore how the south pole of Mars is sculpted by the never-ending cycle of freezing and thawing of exposed carbon dioxide ice. In the summer, carbon dioxide jets loft dust and dirt through cracks in the thawing carbon dioxide ice sheet to the surface where winds blow the material into the hundreds of thousands of dark fans observed from orbit. Planet Four enlists over 136,000 volunteers to map the sizes, shapes, and orientations of these fans in high resolution images. Planet Four is creating an unprecedented wind map of the south pole of Mars in order to probe how the Martian climate changes over time and is impacted year to year by dust storms and other global-scale events. Planet Four: Terrains, aims to study the distribution of the jet process across the south pole and identify new targets of interest for MRO. Over 12,000 people have helped identify the channels and pits (dubbed araneiforms) carved during the jet formation process. In this talk, I’ll give an overview of Planet Four and Planet Four: Terrains and present the latest results from these projects.

Zoom info: Meeting ID: 954 6636 7375 password: DAOseminar

Please click this URL to start or join. https://monash.zoom.us/j/95466367375?pwd=cVJpdEZjVW1kaHAyWGo4Um9NOWxkZz09

Astronomy Poem inspires Mystery Novel: from Marjie Welchframe

“Though my soul may set in darkness, it will rise in perfect light;
I have loved the stars too truly to be feaful of the night.”

From poem The Old Astronomer
Sarah Williams/S.A.D.I.
English poet/novelist, 1868

Novelist Ian Rankin titled his Inspector Rebus novel Set in Darkness after these lines. The poem is written from the perspective of an aged astronomer on his deathbed bidding his student to continue his humble research. The lines have been chosen by a number of professional and amateur astronomers as their epitaphs. Entire poem:
https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Twilight_Hours_(1868)/The_Old_Astronomer

Astronomy Cafe – June 29, 2020

Posted by as Astro Cafe

Video transcript of the whole 1-hour meeting.


More Lunar Photos from Mike Nash

Two more beautiful lunar images from Mike. Check them out and zoom in!

https://photos.smugmug.com/photos/i-rsJ3pkb/0/c0e69a9c/O/i-rsJ3pkb.jpg

https://photos.smugmug.com/photos/i-QmJGhnz/0/2d67596c/O/i-QmJGhnz.jpg

Balcony Astronomy from Edmonton – Abdur Anwar

Edmonton RASCal Abdur Anwar writes: I was able to see Jupiter, Saturn and Mars from the balcony on Wednesday and got some test images in preparation for summer. Mars is supposed to get pretty high up this year by October. Now is a good time to practise. Also got the blue snowball nebula.
I used a grey tube C8 at f10, ASI1600MM camera and an EQ6R mount.
Saturn
Mars
Blue Snowball Nebula

June 21st Annular Eclipse of the Sun from India

Time lapses by Neelam and Ajay Talwar and family in an amazingly complicated setup in the midday heat – note the giant fans! They did a wonderful job of capturing Bailey’s Beads peeking through the lunar craters and mountains along the thin rim of sunlight at the edge of the Moon at mid-eclipse.

Noctilucent clouds from Osoyoos – Debra Ceravolo

Debra’s comments on her Facebook page: “Many people like me have never seen noctilucent clouds and here I have seen and photographed four different events this month. The frequency of these special iridescent clouds is increasing due to climate change. Noctilucent clouds or NLCs form way out in the mesosphere at the edge of cold space. Meteor ‘smoke’ lingers there and ice crystals form around that. The solar minimum causes the thermosphere/mesosphere to be even colder and terrestrial activity affects how water vapour gets up there. So it’s water vapours and extreme cold that form NLCs. This photo was taken the evening of June 27th from my home in southern BC.”

Noctilucent clouds from Osoyoos – Debra Ceravolo

Here is my time lapse video of another display on the morning of June 22.

Recording Astronomical Observations – Joe Carr

Joe reviews how he records his observations by using a combination of an observing log, photos, diagrams, and he also shares how he stays motivated and shares his observations online.

Example screens showing Joe's observations recorded in Evernote
Example screens showing Joe’s observations recorded in Evernote

Planet Nine or Planet Nein? – Reg Dunkley

On 23 June former NRC/DAO Plaskett Fellow Samantha Lawler gave a public outreach lecture from her new Regina home entitled, “Planet Nine or Planet Nein?” She radiates enthusiasm for studying the outer solar system and includes some excellent graphics to help her audience gain new understanding in an enjoyable fashion. Here is UR’s message with links; if you watch the video I’m sure Samantha and UR would be grateful to receive your feedback via the form they provide:

“We hope you enjoyed “Planet Nine or Planet Nein?” with Dr. Samantha Lawler. A few links and attachments follow:
1) Please complete this survey – we would like to hear your feedback.
2) Please click on this link to view the recording of the presentation.
3) Attached are Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 of the slide deck of Dr. Lawler’s presentation
Again, thank you for your interest in the University of Regina’s Research with Impact!”

Observing – Chris Purse

Astronomy Cafe – June 22, 2020

Posted by as Astro Cafe

More Noctilucent Cloud Sightings from Edmonton’s Alister Ling

From Ramsey Heights Park June 20
Noctilucent Cloud and Stunning City Scape From Saskatchewan Drive

UVic Open House Presentation: Using Telescopes as Time Machines

Be sure to catch the following UVic Webinar that begins at 7:30PM on Wednesday June 24th: Using Telescopes as Time Machines by Nishith Eluri and Jonathan Ranallo

“The telescope is perhaps an astronomer’s most useful tool, allowing them to study and understand things billions of lightyears away, in places we could never dream of visiting in person. With only a small telescope and a dark view of the heavens, anyone can see with their own eyes the beautiful planets and moons of our Solar System, faraway spiral galaxies dancing and interacting with each other, the nebulous death throes of ancient stars, clusters of young stars just leaving their nurseries, and a myriad of other celestial wonders. This week, our volunteers Nishith and Jonathan will delve into the history and inner workings of telescopes of all types, from Galileo’s first hand-made refractor to the Earth-sized telescope used to image a black hole, and everything in between.”

The zoom guest link (with password embedded) is:
https://zoom.us/j/97173236268?pwd=V2hhYTAwVVY5cXl5eEFoOUxSYmZGdz09

Meeting ID: 971 7323 6268 Password: 554555​

Observing

Telescope Price Fixing Legal Dispute

Chris Purse shared this CBC story on a legal dispute regarding price fixing of amateur telescopes.

Christopher Go Planetary Imaging Tutorials

Zoom has allowed accomplished members of the astronomical community to share their expertise in a Webinar environment. These sessions are often posted on YouTube to replay at your leisure. There are so many postings, however it is easy to miss some valuable talks. In the following three links acclaimed planetary imager Christopher Go shares his expertise. These sessions may help some local planetary and lunar imagers to further hone their skills. These sessions were hosted by Woodland Hills Camera and Telescopes in April 2020.

Planetary Imaging Essentials Part 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C5ctZoqOi20

Planetary Imaging Essentials Part 2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-b1rO38Snh0

Planetary Imaging Essentials Part 3: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UJTCDLljNYU

Astronomy Cafe – June 15, 2020

Posted by as Astro Cafe

Sketching by Victoria Centre Members

Kuiper belt talk at the Wednesday Night UVic Astronomy Open House at 7:30 PM

The zoom guest link (with password embedded) is:
https://zoom.us/j/97173236268?pwd=V2hhYTAwVVY5cXl5eEFoOUxSYmZGdz09
Meeting ID: 971 7323 6268 Password: 554555​

Using New Horizons Probe for Parallax

The distance between the Earth and New Horizons offers a very long baseline that facilitates parallax measurements. Check out the interesting article here.

CANadian Virtual Astronomy Seminar Series (CANVAS)

The next talk in the CANVAS series will be given Paul Weigert of Western on Monday June 22 at 11:00 PDT. Dr. Weigert’s talk is titled ‘ Interstellar asteroids and comets: what are they and where do they come from?’

Visit the CANVAS webpagehttp://astroherzberg.org/canvas/ – for the schedule of talks, a link to the YouTube channel, and links to the recorded talks and upcoming talks.

The Zoom link for Monday’s talk is – https://zoom.us/j/97943735055?pwd=alhsVC9vdUVTUHBoenZKRzFleGVxdz09

Noctilucent clouds from Edmonton – Alistair Ling

Daytime Lunar Photo from Mike Nash

During this cloudy interlude RASCals have had to resort to desperate measures to capture Astro objects. Despite multiple layers of cloud and a rising Sun, Mike managed to get a remarkable amount of detail in this image taken at 9AM on Sunday June 14th. He writes: “The filter works well enough, but not perfect – on screen the sky is grey rather than a completely visible light-blocking black. Alignment points (for stacking software) needed to be set at a much higher brightness than I would normally do.” Check it out

Observing

Astronomy Cafe – June 8, 2020

Posted by as Astro Cafe

A new sunspot!

There is a new sunspot on the Sun after three months of being spotless! Both Bill Weir and Joe Carr captured this apparition. More info on SpaceWeather.com for June 6, 2020.

Solar H-Alpha & White Light – June 5/20 – Bill Weir sketches & outreach photos
Sun with Sunspot & clouds – June 6, 2020 – Joe Carr photo

Golden Week of Webinars in Astrophysics 2020

The link for registration is www.astro.uc.cl
Note the time is for Chile time zone which is the same as Central Time

Photos from Edmonton

Thanks to Dave Robinson for forwarding these photos.

Moon set over Edmonton by Larry Wood - June 5th about 5am -ISO 100, 300 mm, 1/60 second
Moon set over Edmonton by Larry Wood – June 5th about 5am -ISO 100, 300 mm, 1/60 second
Noctilucent clouds on the morning of June 4th - a follow up to what Alister Ling talked about last week.
Noctilucent clouds on the morning of June 4th – a follow up to what Alister Ling talked about last week.
Alister with one of his patented moonset shots from Friday - the view from Kinnaird Park.
Alister with one of his patented moonset shots from Friday – “The view from Kinnaird Park, birds chirping, geese honking, lilac bushes perfuming the damp coolness. So much to image lately! It will take a while to process the time slice, time-lapse, valley fog time-lapse. How do you like your Mead/Honey Moon? Pale, yellow, peach, amber?”

Undulating fog in the river valley – a time-lapse captured by Alister. The movie really shows the bulk motions that are not visible to the eye. Sped up 100X. Definitely on the meteorology side of things, but the Moon is in the movie at the start!

Masked Men Make Off with VCO Telescope

On June 4th, vigilant lunar astrophotographer Mike Nash captures RASCals in the act as they conduct top secret mission to ship Victoria Centre Observatory scope to a telescope spa in the Los Angeles area.

Two Masked RASCals Surveying Victoria Centre Observatory Scope
RASCals Furtively Stow TPO 16 Inch RC Telescope in Crate.
The Crate Securely Lashed in Getaway Vehicle … Rumoured to Belong to Mike Nash
Crate Last Seen Passing Southbound Through Richmond BC

Venus setting behind the Chiricahua Mountains from Portal, Arizona

On May 28, 2020, I shot a video of the crescent Venus setting behind the Chiricahua Mountains. This was just 6 days before Venus passed between Earth and the Sun (i.e., inferior conjunction). Shot from Bifrost Observatory, 8-inch Meade LX200, Sony A6000. Fred Espenak (Mr. Eclipse)

Planet Venus setting on 2020 May 28 from Fred Espenak on Vimeo.

Observing

Astronomy Cafe

Posted by as Meetings

Astro Cafe Logo

Astronomy Cafe is normally held every Monday evening in Fairfield, Victoria, BC, Canada except during summer months or when the Monday falls on a statutory holiday. During the Spring of 2020, in-person meetings were suspended in favour of meeting online in order to comply with British Columbia’s provincial health directives to minimize risk for contracting the coronavirus COVID-19.

You are invited to share content for upcoming online meetings via our President Reg Dunkley (president@victoria.rasc.ca). We will post your submitted content to our website and present it to members at the next online meeting, which still happens every Monday evening at 7:30PM. Of course, you are welcome to log in and present your content personally! Links to our online meetings are emailed to RASC Victoria Centre members a day or two ahead of time, so please join us!

  • October 19, 2020
    • Kevin Light & Kia Tully’s photo of a kayaker in front of the full Moon, taken from Mt. Douglas
    • Astrophotography by the Victoria Camera Club members who participated in John McDonald’s astrophoto workshop
    • Harvest Moonrise over Edmonton – Luca Vanzella
    • Black Holes and the 2020 Nobel Prizes – Randy Enkin
    • TPO 16″ telescope repair status & observatory access update – Reg Dunkley
    • Mars sequential photos – John McDonald
  • October 5, 2020
    • Sunset Azimuth Sweep – Luca Vanzella
    • Review of Astro Cafe web page for this week – Reg Dunkley
      • Mars detailed image – John McDonald
      • Mars – Abdur Anwar, Edmonton Centre
      • Unquiet Slumbers Aurora video from Alastair Ling, Edmonton
      • Two astronomy presentation alerts from Jim Hesser – gravitational waves, asteroid sample return JAXA mission
      • Electronically-assisted astronomy (EAA) – David Lee
    • FDAO Star Party & AGM – Lauri Roche
  • September 28, 2020
    • Report from the VCO by Reg Dunkley
    • Perseverance Mars Mission UofA webinar – Chris Herd, presenter – presented by Dave Robinson
    • Mars & Uranus with moons – Abdur Anwar’s photos from Edmonton – presented by Dave Robinson
    • 12.5″ RC telescope installation – a slideshow by Joe Carr
    • Astro Cafe web page review – Reg Dunkley
      • Astrobiology – a UVic Open House presentation by James di Francesco
      • Baby Planets to Black Holes (ALMA & New Horizon telescope) – lecture to Engineering Society by Dr. Schieven
      • The Quantum Physicist as Causal Detective
      • What’s happening at the RASC
    • Observe the Moon Night – Randy Enkin
    • APOD Equinox composite photo over Edmonton by Luca Vanzella – presented by Chris Purse
  • September 21, 2020
    • Overall Winners 2020 – Insight Investment Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition – presented by Barbara Lane
    • Return to the VCO – Reg Dunkley
    • Time lapse video of the work party at the VCO today – Joe Carr
    • VCO operating procedure Q&A – all
    • Summer Solstice to Autumnal Equinox – Randy Enkin
    • Astro Cafe web page review – Reg Dunkley
      • FDAO Virtual Star Party
      • UVic Observatory Open House
      • Astro Imagers from Edmonton
      • Indigenous Astronomy 
  • September 14, 2020
    • Dr. Phil Groff, Executive Director of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada
  • Used Newtonian telescope purchase, re-configuration and collimation – Randy Enkin
  • Sketching Lunar trenches using NASA Scientific Visualization – Randy Enkin
  • An upcoming astrophotography workshop to Victoria Camera Club (Sep 15 & 29) – a trial run using zoom – John McDonald
  • Comet Imaging – journey of discovery – Garry Sedun
  • Equipment purchases – small astrograph, new mount & Lunar Observing – David Lee
  • Astro Cafe web page review – Reg Dunkley
    • Sketch of fading Comet Neowise by Bill Weir
    • What’s happening at the RASC? – how to register and a review
    • Impressive Images of Mars using Winjupos software – from Edmonton RASCal Abdur Anwar
    • Mars in 4K (Part 2) – youtube video – ElderFox Documentaries
    • Dan’s image of the North America nebula (NGC 7000) – using dual narrow-band filter
    • Sep 8th – Victoria Centre Council meeting
    • Sep 14th Phil Groth presentation – send questions
    • Membership is declining both nationally and locally – lowest in 5 years
  • FDAO “Equinox to Solstice” – 4 public outreach sessions and Virtual tour for Observatory Hill is coming along – Lauri Roche
  • August 24, 2020
    • Perspective 209 seconds video – Marji Welchframe
    • M31 Andromeda Galaxy from Nanoose Bay and 2,000th Moon milestone on Enkin’s Daily Moon on Facebook – Randy Enkin
    • Review of tonight’s Astro Cafe web page – Reg Dunkley
      • A Poetic Pelican photo by Doug MacDonald
      • Lagoon & Trifid Nebulae photo by Dan Posey
      • Cosmic Collisions – final UVic Open House – Mallory Thorpe
      • RASC Robotic Telescope Editing Contest for August – M82 data processing
      • Speaker Series – Hawaiian Nights
      • Edmonton RASCals deep sky imaging
      • Press briefing on Starlink
    • Observing Comet NEOWISE & Campbell’s Hydrogen Star – Bill Weir at Pearson College Godin-Newton Observatory
    • Moon shadows on Jupiter by John McDonald
  • August 17, 2020
    • Astronomy Cafe zoom passwords – Joe Carr
    • Jupiter shadow transits – sequential frames – John McDonald
    • Perseid meteor shower photos from his allsky camera – Sid Sidhu
    • Mars, the Moon & Venus this past week – David Lee
    • Question about observing meteors low to the horizon – Dorothy Paul
    • Review of tonight’s Astro Cafe web page – Reg Dunkley
  • August 10, 2020
    • Mars and the Moon – David Lee
    • Colour Filters for lunar observing – Randy Enkin
    • How human sight works – yellow filters for lunar observing and seeing colour when observing nebula – Dorothy Paul
    • Space Educator’s Institute -3-day online conference – Lauri Roche & David Lee
    • Perseid meteor shower and other observing hints – Chris Purse
    • RASC National for Perseids observing group – Discord chat service being used – Bill Weir
  • July 27, 2020
    • Historical Comets – members’ photos, sketches and observations of comets past, including some famous ones!
    • Falling Through Space” – Dr. Gordon Walker – UVic presentation
    • First FDAO Virtual Star Party – featuring Dave Balam
    • Canadian Comet Sleuth David Levy: Webinar
  • July 20, 2020
    • North America Nebula – image by Dan Posey
    • Comet NEOWISE C/2020 F3 – images from John Mcdonald, Randy Enkin & others
    • Bigger, better, faster: how changes in technology drive astronomy data collection by Nat Comeau – UVic Astronomy Open House
    • Observing – links to resources
  • July 13, 2020
    • Comet NEOWISE C/2020 F3 – images and sketches from Victoria Centre members
    • Useful comet websites
    • Computer Science in Astronomy: A UVic Open House Webinar
    • Observing
  • July 6, 2020
    • Noctilucent clouds from Edmonton – Alistair Ling
    • Penumbral Eclipse – July 4th – Doug Hardy, David Lee, Dorothy Paul, Randy Enkin
    • Martian Citizen Science – webinar notice
    • Astronomy Poem inspires Mystery Novel – The Old Astronomer by Sarah Williams – Marjie Welchframe
    • Lunar photos – Alex Schmid & John McDonald
  • June 29, 2020
    • More Lunar Photos from Mike Nash
    • Balcony Astronomy from Edmonton – Abdur Anwar
    • June 21st Annular Eclipse of the Sun from India – Time lapses by Neelam and Ajay Talwar
    • Noctilucent clouds from Osoyoos – Debra Ceravolo
    • Recording Astronomical Observations – Joe Carr
    • “Planet Nine or Planet Nein?” with Dr. Samantha Lawler – presented by Reg Dunkley
    • Observing and review of the RASC National youtube channel – Chris Purse
  • June 22, 2020
    • More Noctilucent Cloud Sightings from Edmonton’s Alister Ling
    • Telescope Price Fixing Legal Dispute – presented by Chris Purse
    • Christopher Go Planetary Imaging Tutorials
    • Geomagnetic Measurements Project – Nathan & other members
  • June 15, 2020
    • Sketching by Victoria Centre Members – Phillip Teece’s historical sketches, Diane Bell, Dorothy Paul
    • Noctilucent clouds from Edmonton – Alistair Ling
    • Daytime Lunar Photo from Mike Nash
    • Observing – review of the coming week’s opportunities from Skynews and Sky & Telescope magazines
  • June 8, 2020
    • First sunspot in 3 months! – Bill Weir’s sketches & public outreach photos and Joe Carr’s photo
    • Photos from Edmonton – Alistair Ling’s and Larry Wood’s Moonset and Noctilucent cloud photos, and Alistair’s setting Venus and drifting fog time lapse videos
    • Masked Men Make Off with VCO Telescope – Reg Dunkley, Dave Robinson, Dan Posey and Mike Nash remove and pack up the 16″ TPO RC telescope
    • Venus setting behind the Chiricahua Mountains – Fred Espenak (Mr. Eclipse) captures a beautiful crescent-phased Venus setting in a time lapse video from southern Arizona
    • Observing – review of the coming week’s opportunities from Skynews and Sky & Telescope magazines

Virtual Astro Cafe – March to June 1st, 2020

Astro Cafe Presentations Archive – 2014-2019

Astronomy Cafe event photos

March 2020 Speaker: When Stars Explode: Understanding Supernovae from Tycho to Today

Posted by as Meetings

Dr. Tyrone Woods

7:30PM Wednesday March 11th 2020, Room A104 Bob Wright Centre, UVic

In 1572, a new “star” appeared in the sky that forever changed the way we think about the Universe. Identified by famed Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe, this incredible event is now understood to have been the explosion of a dead star — a supernova. Since then, supernova observations have illuminated the Cosmos, revealing everything from the origin of the iron in our blood to the final fate of the Universe. In this talk, I’ll outline a brief history of supernova astronomy, culminating in the cutting-edge work being carried out in Victoria and across Canada today to understand why and how some stars explode, and the lasting impact of their explosions and remnants in our Galaxy and beyond.

Dr. Tyrone E. Woods is a research associate and Plaskett Fellow at NRC-Herzberg in Victoria. There, he studies the physics of some of the most energetic events in the Universe, by combining theoretical models with observations across the electromagnetic spectrum. Before returning to Canada, he completed his PhD at the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics in Munich, Germany, and held research positions in Australia and the UK.

2020 AGM Service Awards

Posted by as Events, Meetings

Awards to members for service in 2019

Newton/Ball Award: Michel Michaud

  • Michel has made a major contribution to the Victoria Centre serving as Librarian and Observing Chair where he coordinated MIC’s for the VCO and scheduled Messier Marathons.
  • He is one of the few who are qualified to run the Plaskett Telescope and plays an essential role operating this instrument at DAO Saturday Star Parties and capturing images for RASC’als.
  • Michel’s quality binary star measurements in the Pleiades have been published in scientific databases and he serves as a role model for citizen science.
Reg presenting Michel Michaud with the Newton Ball Service Award
Reg presenting Michel Michaud with the Newton Ball Service Award

Ernie Pfannenschmidt Telescope Making Award: Ken Mallory

  • For his innovative stylish design of a viewing shield that will safely allow observers to direct solar binoculars at the Sun.
Ken Mallory using his innovative solar shield
Ken Mallory using his innovative solar shield

Award of Excellence in Astrophotography: Doug MacDonald

  • For his Excellence in capturing NGC 6992, The Eastern Veil in the Cyngus loop. Collecting 3 hours of Ha and OIII and one hour of RGB with a 5″ refractor in Victoria BC.
NGC6992 - Eastern Veil Nebula - by Doug MacDonald
NGC6992 – Eastern Veil Nebula – by Doug MacDonald

Certificate of Appreciation: Marjie Welchframe

  • For her Outstanding Support and Engagement for recruiting and scheduling RASC’als to tend the Centre of the Universe Welcome Desk.
Reg presenting Marjie Welchframe with a Certificate of Appreciation
Reg presenting Marjie Welchframe with a Certificate of Appreciation

Certificate of Appreciation: Chris Aesoph

  • For his Outstanding Support and Engagement for coordinating the RASC’s Stargazing event at Fort Rodd Hill.
Starting to observe from Fort Rodd Hill
Starting to observe from Fort Rodd Hill

Certificate of Appreciation: Bruce Lane

  • For his Outstanding Support in organizing the Victoria Centre Star Party at St. Stephens Anglican Church and his effective recruitment of RASC Volunteers.
Reg presenting Bruce Lane with a Certificate of Appreciation
Reg presenting Bruce Lane with a Certificate of Appreciation

Certificate of Appreciation: David Lee

  • For his vital contribution by stepping in as the Astronomy DayTeam Captain, recruiting Saturday Star Party Speakers and coordinating a Public Library Astronomy Display.
Reg presenting David Lee with a Certificate of Appreciation
Reg presenting David Lee with a Certificate of Appreciation