Astronomy Cafe – August 24, 2020

Posted by as Astro Cafe

Video transcript of meeting

Hawaiian Nights: A Personal Journey from Vancouver Island to Maunakea, with Cam Wipper

Don’t miss this interesting Zoom presentation at 4:00 PM PDT on Friday August 28th. Growing up in Nanaimo, Cam never imagined he would spend nearly a decade living in Hawai’i and working on Maunakea, the best place on Earth for astronomical observations.

In his talk, Cam will tell the story of how he found himself on Maunakea, from his days as a student at Vancouver Island University, to his first night up on the summit of Maunakea, nearly 14.000 feet (4200m) above sea level. This will include a brief history of astronomy in Hawaii, as well as an exploration of how a modern astronomical observatory conducts scientific observations. All will be told from the perspective of a telescope operator and scientific observer; a position Cam has held at the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope since 2015. Click here to register.

Lagoon & Trifid Nebulae – Dan Posey

30.5 minutes (61x30s) of exposures captured from Metchosin. Each frame was captured at f 1.4 using a Sigma 105mm lens, and a Canon Ra at iso 640 off of an unguided iOptron Skyguider Pro – Messier 8 & 20 RGB – Dan Posey

Moon shadows on Jupiter – John McDonald

Three of 20 images of the shadows cast by Io and Ganymede on Jupiter during a double shadow event, one near the start, one in the middle and one at the end. Io can just be made out on the upper two images as a white spot between Ganymede’s shadow and Jupiter’s red spot. In the lower image Io has just left the planet’s disk and shows up clearly. Details Date 08-04-2020. 8″ Edge SCT on AVX mount. ZWO ASI120MM-S camera with filter wheel and TV Powermate barlow to give focal ration f/25. Captured 1000 frames in each of R,G and B filters for each color. The best 30% for each filter were stacked in Astrostakkert. Sharpened in Registax. Winjupos was used to derotate the R,G and B frames before combining to make RGB color images. Post processing in ACR and Photoshop. Time lapse movie

A Poetic Pelican by Doug MacDonald

A wonderful bird is the Pelican.
His beak can hold more than his belly can.
He can hold in his beak enough food for a week!
I’ll be darned if I know how the hellican.

Dixon Lanier Merritt
IC 5070 Pelican Nebula – Doug MacDonald

Shot this Aug. 9 – 13 with Bortle 6 skies. This bird lives in Cygnus, not too far from Deneb. I processed it in the SHO palette; it represents just over 8 hours of narrowband exposure with a 5″ refractor at f/5.5.

Final UVic Open House of the Summer is a Block Buster!

What happens when the largest objects in the Universe go face-to-face? Be sure to join UVic Phd Candidate Mallory Throp for this fascinating Zoom presentation that begins at 7:30PM on Wednesday August 26th. The zoom guest link (with password embedded) is: https://zoom.us/j/97173236268?pwd=V2hhYTAwVVY5cXl5eEFoOUxSYmZGdz09

Cosmic Collisions
Abstract: What happens when galaxies collide? Right now, the Andromeda Galaxy is hurtling towards us, on a direct collision course with our galaxy. Surely the Milky Way will not escaped unscathed? For almost a century astronomers have been trying to figure out what happens when galaxies clash, and from that investigation a harrowing tale of starvation, cannibalism, and complicated acronyms has arisen. With today’s massive telescopes and high-tech simulations, we can hope to understand what happens when the largest objects in the Universe go face-to-face. And perhaps we can predict how our galaxy will be changed for the better (or the worse)​

Robotic Telescope Editing Contest for August: M82 the Cigar Galaxy

Instead of being a spectator you can be a participant! Click on the link to find how you can get your hands of the raw data for this fascinating galaxy. https://skynews.ca/introducing-the-rasc-robotic-telescope-editing-contest/

Imagine: 8 Hours of LRGB data and 7.5 Hours of Hydrogen Alpha! Check it out and remember the contest is Only in Canada … Pity!

Global Hands On Astronomy Conference 2020

Local Astronomical Education evangelist Sid Sidhu is enjoying this online conference that is currently under way. Click the link to learn more about the conference program: https://handsonuniverse.org/ghou2020/programme/

Youtube videos of many of the presentations will be made available here: https://www.youtube.com/user/GTTPGHOU

Edmonton RASCals Focus on the Deep Sky: relayed by Dave Robinson

Elephant Trunk Nebula by Arnold Rivera. He had to do some colour correction due to filters used:
The star on the lower right is Herschel’s Garnet Star (Mu Cephei). It is a red supergiant – one of the largest stars known (it’s diameter is estimated to be larger than Saturn’s orbit). Equipment and details: Celestron RASA 8”Camera: ZWO ASI294 MC Pro (cooled to -16 C) 30s subs, 50 frames, 450 gain
Arnold Rivera August 22 Lobster Claw Nebula
The large nebula in the centre is Sharpless 2-157 (The Lobster Claw Nebula), is described as a “ring nebula surrounding a Wolf-Rayet star (WR157, SAO 20512, mag 9.58)”. To the right edge of this image is NGC 7635 (The Bubble Nebula). Towards the bottom of the image is the small but relatively bright nebula NGC 7538 (in Cepheus), “home to the largest yet discovered protostar (~ 300 times the size of the Solar System)”.
In addition, there is a tight grouping of bright stars located just below Sh2-157 – open cluster NGC 7510.
Equipment and details: Celestron RASA8, ZWO ASI 294MC Pro ( -16C) 30sec subs, 50 subs.
On August 23rd Arnold Rivera imaged the very faint and very large nebula Sharpless 2-129
(The Flying Bat Nebula)
Larry Wood from Caroline AB Aug 20. Above Bubble Nebula & M52 and Below M13
Alister Ling August 22
Channeling some E.E. Barnard last night at the microwave tower on the hill above the north shore of Pigeon Lake…. 70mm on full frame, and it is NOT Sagittarius or Scutum.

Press Briefing on Starlink and other mega-constellations

At 11AM on Tuesday August 25th the American Astronomical Society (AAS) and NSF’s NOIRLab will have a press briefing on the SATCON1 LEOsat mega-constellations workshop report. SATCON1 gathered astronomers, satellite operators, dark-sky advocates, policy makers, and other stakeholders to discuss, understand, and quantify the impacts of large satellite constellations on ground-based optical and infrared astronomical observations as well as on the human experience of the night sky. The briefing will be live-streamed on the AAS Press Office YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/c/AASPressOffice)

Observing

Astronomy Cafe – July 27, 2020

Posted by as Astro Cafe

Video transcript of meeting

Historical Comets

The Great Comets - 1680, 1682, 1744, 1811, 1835, 1842
The Great Comets – 1680, 1682, 1744, 1811, 1835, 1842

Members’ photos, sketches and observations of comets past, including some famous ones!

  • 2015 Lovejoy – Sherry Buttnor photo
  • Observing Highlights – website archive 1995-2013
    • 2013 – 2012 S1 (ISON) , 2013 R1 (Lovejoy), 2012 X1 (LINEAR), 2013 V3 (Nevski), 2P/Encke, Panstarrs (C2011/L4).
    • 2012 – 168P-Hergenrother, 2009 P1 Garradd
    • 2011 – Comet 2009 P1 Garradd
    • 2010 – Hartley, C/2009 R1 McNaught
    • 2009 – C/2007 N3 Lulin, Kushida 144P
    • 2008 – no comets observed
    • 2007 Jul-Dec – 8P/Tuttle, 17/P Holmes
    • 2007 Jan-Jun – Lovejoy C/2007 E2, McNaught C2006 P1
    • 2006 Jul-Dec – C/2006 M4 Swan
    • 2006 Jan-Jun – 73/P Schwassmann-Wachmann
    • 2005 – Temple, Machholz C/2004 Q2
    • 2004 Apr-Jun – C/2001 Q4 NEAT
    • 2003-2000 – no comets observed
    • 1999 Feb-Mar – Comet Linear
    • 1997 – Hale-Bopp – Sherry Buttnor photo, John McDonald photo, Lola wood block painting from Belize
    • 1996 – Hyakutake – Sherry Buttnor photo
  • Zenfolio comet collections
  • The Great Comets – Carpenter & Westley slide 14 (Wikipedia article)
    • 1680 – C/1680 V1, also called the Great Comet of 1680, Kirch’s Comet, and Newton’s Comet, has the distinction of being the first comet discovered by telescope
    • 1682 – Halley’s Comet or Comet Halley, officially designated 1P/Halley, is the best-known of the short-period comets and is visible from Earth every 75–76 years.
    • 1744 – The Great Comet of 1744, whose official designation is C/1743 X1, and which is also known as Comet de Chéseaux or Comet Klinkenberg-Chéseaux, was a spectacular comet that was observed during 1743 and 1744
    • 1811 – The Great Comet of 1811, formally designated C/1811 F1, is a comet that was visible to the naked eye for around 260 days, a record it held until the appearance of Comet Hale-Bopp in 1997. In October 1811, at its brightest, it displayed an apparent magnitude of 0, with an easily visible coma.
    • 1835 – Halley’s Comet or Comet Halley, officially designated 1P/Halley, is the best-known of the short-period comets and is visible from Earth every 75–76 years. Last apparition was in 1986, and the next apparition is in 2061.
    • 1843 – The Great Comet of 1843 formally designated C/1843 D1 and 1843 I, was a long-period comet which became very bright in March 1843 (it is also known as the Great March Comet)

The First FDAO Virtual Star Party: 7PM August 1st

You are invited to the inaugural Virtual Star Party hosted by Friends of the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory. David Balam, Plaskett telescope operator and Near Earth Object specialist will deliver a presentation on comets. For more information and hyperlinks to the Zoom meeting please click on the following:

https://myemail.constantcontact.com/Invitation—Virtual-Saturday-Night-from-the-Centre-of-the-Universe.html?soid=1132744782935&aid=Kn9A2Z3_-74

Canadian Comet Sleuth David Levy: Webinar 4PM Thursday July 30th

The Canadian Comet Sleuth David Levy, author and comet hunter
Comet NEOWISE has been the sensation of our July skies, the first naked-eye comet for the Northern Hemisphere in ages. David Levy knows all about comets that snag the spotlight. Comet Shoemaker-Levy 9, which broke apart in July 1992 and collided with Jupiter in July 1994, garnered the “Canadian comet sleuth” media attention around the world, including the headline on the very first cover of SkyNews 25 years ago.
Join The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada’s Jenna Hinds and SkyNews’ Allendria Brunjes as they sit down with Levy in the next Speaker Series, at 7 p.m. on Thursday, July 30.
Levy has discovered 22 comets, given innumerable lectures and written countless articles and more than 30 books — including an autobiography, A Nightwatchman’s Journey. There’s an asteroid named in his honour, and his awards include the Chant Medal of The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada.
Click this link to register for this Webinar

Dr Gordon Walker speaks at the Wednesday UVic Open House

You are invited to the UVic Open House which starts at 7:30PM on Wednesday July 29th. The zoom guest link (with password embedded) is:
https://zoom.us/j/97173236268?pwd=V2hhYTAwVVY5cXl5eEFoOUxSYmZGdz09

Dr. Gordon Walker will deliver a presentation entitled “Falling Through Space”

Observing

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 – 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 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!

  • 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

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

Notice of Election at 2020 AGM

Posted by as Meetings

Barbara Lane, Secretary, RASC Victoria Centre

There will be an election for the Victoria Centre council at the Annual General Meeting of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Victoria Centre, being held on February 22, 2020 at 7:30PM. Location: The Ambrosia Centre, 638 Fisgard Street, Victoria, BC, Canada.

Here is the list of nominees.

President: Reg Dunkley
First Vice President: VACANT
Second Vice President: Marjie Welchframe
Secretary: Barbara Lane
Treasurer: Deb Crawford

Librarian: Diane Bell
Membership Coordinator: Chris Purse
National Rep: Nelson Walker, Bill Weir
Observing: Jim Stilburn
Outreach Coordinator: Mandy Lee
Past President: Chris Purse
Progressive Lighting Policies: Dave Robinson
Schools Program & Telescopes: Sid Sidhu
SkyNews Editor: Bruce Lane
Technical Committee Chair: Matt Watson
Webmaster: Joe Carr

Directors:

    James Di Francesco (DAO Liaison)
    Chris Gainor
    Jim Hesser
    David Lee
    John McDonald
    Bill Weir (Pearson College Liaison)
    Jim Nemec (Camosun College LIaison)
    Dan Posey
    Lauri Roche (Friends of the DAO Liaison)
    Alex Schmid (University of Victoria Liaison)