Castle Point Astronomy Club
Castle Point Astronomy Club Diary
May 2018 by Dave Stratton
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Wednesday 2nd May 2018

Our scribe was away this evening so no diary entry was recorded. In brief Mike Barrett gave a very interesting talk called ‘Building my Observatory’ where he described how he constructed an ingenious obervatory with a roll off roof and storage space.

Wednesday 9th May 2018

Andrew spoke about the GDPR changes that are imminent and handed out revised copies of our Membership Form for us to fill in and pass to Ted.

He got us started on the business of the evening which was:

Membership Roundup or Stikfest

First up was Andy D with a super image of the Californian Nebula which he said was an RGB plus HA image. He explained how he used PhotoShop to manipulate the image and bring out the ιwispy᾿ bits. He said that he removed all the stars prior to doing the processing and then replaced them afterwards. The nebula is in Perseus, although it is two moons across it is very hard to see visually.

Ed commented that he had managed to see it using a Horsehead filter and 18x magnification.

Peter was next and said that Jupiter was at opposition and at its best it is visible before sunset.

He showed us he image of Comet 74P Smirnova–Chernykh is a periodic comet. He imaged it in 2016 and recently got it passing through a galaxy. He explained that he keeps a record of its precise location which he sends for publication – he said that his image also contained several asteroids that he pointed out to us.

Next he had the comet C/2016 M1 (PANSTARRS) which he said it was a very faint object. He showed us his details in the Minor Planet data of its position. His latest image shows it to be currently the brightest comet in the sky.

He explained that he uses some software to establish the location by using plate solving techniques that use star positions. It is accurate to 0.1 seconds of arc.

He finished with a fine pic of M1 the Crab Nebula.

Andrew introduced Ed for his talk on:

Me and My Scope

Ed set up a tripod with a rather weird reflecting scope. He said it was an Astroscan from Edmund Scientific. It was a tabletop Newtonian reflector modified to sit on a tripod. Ed said 90,000 were made between 1976 and 2009.

The secondary is mounted on a glass plate so the whole thing is effectively sealed so the collimation is fixed. The mirror is 105mm with a focal length of 445mm.

Ed said it would go to 80 to 100 times magnification but was intended for low power use.

The body is moulded in red plastic as they all are and apparently the material was used prior to this model.

He showed the simple line of sight finder but said that a red dot device could be used.

Andrew had taken some pics of a rather nice sunset with his iPhone from the upstairs of his home through double glazed windows. He himself was amazed at how good they were.

Well we certainly squeezed a lot in.

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