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|Newsletter 86 | June 2018 | www.macastro.org.au ||
Macastro Newsletter - June 2018
Welcome to our monthly general newsletter which will reach you, our members and subscribed members of the public, during the week prior to our Macarthur Astronomy Forum each month by simple email.
FROM THE PRESIDENT
Welcome to your June Newsletter.
Thank you to Ray Armstrong (Vice President) and Barry Moore (Secretary), for putting on a very successful Stargazing Live Event, our contribution was 182, over double our last effort. Thanks again to Ray in running our May Forum and all those members who assisted and took part in these events, including the Public Night on 26 May. MDSI's Caitlin Manganaro once again delivered a sausage sizzle on the night, thanks for the contibution to our funds.
MAY's ASTRONOMY FORUM
ULTRA-FAINT IMAGING WITH THE HUNTSMAN CANON-LENS TELESCOPE - Dr. Lee Spitler
Lee gave an excellent lecture as usual showing the final construction of the Huntsman Telescope and the results of their Ultra-faint imaging project.
Monday 16 July - Special Event - "Space Rocks!" - Amy Shira Teitel (Vintage Space) and Geoff Notkin (The Meteorite Men) are our guest speakers. This Macarthur Astronomy Forum Event will be held in the Acacia Theatre at the Mount Annan Botanic Gardens PlantBank, only the second time since MAS's inaugural meeting that it has been held away from UWS/WSU.
This Event will begin at 6.30 pm and finish at 10.30 pm. There will be an intermission between speakers when drinks and nibbles will be served.
Entrance is by ticket only, MAS members $10.00 and non-members $15.00. Book here https://www.facebook.com/events/222838371780286/
See our new Calendar for 2018 http://www.macastro.org.au/mas/index.php/events/what-s-on/calendar/month.calendar/2018/03/16/- for all our events booked so far. Another busy year!!
Saturday 21 July - Our Winter Public program continues at the Campbelltown Rotary Observatory, set up from 4pm. Lecture at 5pm in Building 21.
PHOTOGRAPHERS OF THE MONTH: NARELLAN LIBRARY
We are the 'Stars' at the library for the next 7 weeks, go along and see our efforts
President, Macarthur Astronomical Society Inc.
Macarthur Astronomy Forum: THE STORY OF ASTRO-DEVICES AND DIGITAL SETTING CIRCLES
When: Monday 21 MAY 2018, at 7.30 pm sharp.
Where: Lecture Theatre 213, Building 30, Goldsmith Avenue, Western Sydney University - Campbelltown Campus
Speaker: Serge antonov
Abstract: The story of Astro-devices and digital setting circles
MEMBERS OBSERVING SCHEDULE
Stargard - Thursday 14 June. Gates will open about 4.00pm.
The Forest - Friday 15 June and Saturday 16 June. Gates open by 3pm on Friday speak to Ned/John for any changes.
Stargard - Saturday 07 July Gates will open about 4.00pm.
Check website and Facebook pages for any last minute changes.
Photo by Peter Godwin
Wednesday 20 June - Camden Library public night, also Photographers of the month. June and July
Monday 25 June - Cobbitty Joey Scouts - a few scopes required for a couple of hours.
Monday 16 July - Special Event - "Space Rocks!" - Amy Shira Teitel (Vintage Space) and Geoff Notkin (The Meteorite Men) are our guest speakers. This Macarthur Astronomy Forum Event will be held in the Acacia Theatre at the Mount Annan Botanic Gardens PlantBank
Monday 23 July - Saturday 28 July - Macquarie Uiversity Space Technology and STEM Conference and Exhibition, in conjunction with JPL and One Giant Leap Australia
Saturday 28 July - WSU/MAS - Setup scopes at 4.00pm for joint viewing night at Werrington Observatory
Monday 20 August with Ed Kruzins - NASA/CSIRO
PUBLIC OBSERVING NIGHTS
At the Campbelltown Rotary Observatory on the following dates: 21 July 2018 and 15 September 2018
1) Parkes 18-20 May 2018, Thanks to Dave Manning for organising, great time had by all. Thanks also to John Sarkissian and the members of CWAS who made it such a memorable occasion.
2) China May 2019. Detailed discussions with Roberto Soria and Dr Zheng at the National Astronomical Observatories, Chinese Academy of Sciences. We are still awaiting confirmation of dates.A tentative itinerary has been emailed to you all.
Cost reduction! Based on the current numbers wishing to join this trip, 15, the cost has dropped to approximately $3,000.00 based on twin share,subject to currency fluctuations and 2019 pricelists. Please contact Tony for any further information.
HEAVENS ABOVE! - Bob Bee
Diamonds in the Sky - The Jewel Box
At this time of the year, the Southern Cross is due south and almost directly overhead. You can’t miss it.
If you have a pair of binoculars, or a small telescope, there is a beautiful object to be seen a fifth of a moon diameter and about “8 o’clock” from the left star of the Cross (beta Crucis).
To the naked eye, it appears as a very faint and fuzzy 4th magnitude star. That’s why it has the designation kappa Crucis. But through binoculars we can see a small collection of stars that has been variously described as ‘an arrow head’, a ‘wedge’ or (my favourite) a ‘capital A’.
Astronomers generally agree, in their more romantic moments, that this star cluster ranks amongst the most beautiful objects in the southern Milky Way and is one of the finest examples of what are called ‘open clusters.’
It is ‘The Jewel Box.’
Even through a small telescope, we are treated to an assortment of white, blue and red giant stars, looking every bit like a handful of jewels scattered over a black velvet cloth. Hence the name, given by John Herschel when he described its telescopic appearance as "...a superb piece of fancy jewellery." This was probably before he entered it into his famous catalogue as NGC 4755.
Some of these stars are among the most luminous known in our galaxy. Right in the middle of the A’s cross bar is a lovely red supergiant, over 80,000 times more luminous than our Sun.
The Jewel Box is always very popular at public star nights for although it is clearly visible in binoculars from your back yard, a telescope under low power (say 50x magnification) will show the beautiful individual stars in their vivid jewel-like colours.
The cluster is one of the youngest known, with an estimated age of only 14 million years. The 100 odd stars in the cluster are spread across a distance of about 25 light years, but these jewels are safe from burglars. They are over 6,500 light years away. Too far even for light fingers.
NGC4755 - The Jewel Box
Beanies, Caps, Mugs, Polo Shirts, Pens and Jackets are in stock or can be ordered for you through firstname.lastname@example.org
NEW- Red Light LED Torches are in stock $10.00 exc. batteries.
Image by Phil Kidd - WA nightscape Image by Dave Manning - Mars
LOAN A TELESCOPE - CAMDEN COUNCIL
During November 2015, Camden Council Library Services launched their Telescope loan service to library members. Instigated by the library and supported by MAS, they now have four 8" Dobsonians and four ED80 refractors on loan. An ideal first step for families and individuals to 'try before you buy'. The project is a great success.
Contact MAS if you need asistance.
We still have McDob, our 6" Dobsonian, and. If you would like to borrow it please let a committee member know. We also have a a Celestron AstroMaster 130 Newtonian reflector on a manual drive equatorial mount.
Latest addition is a Meade ETX125, with GOTO. Will be available once we have completed repairs. Thanks to Greg Bradford for checking it out and compiling a manual.
MAS acknowledges Western Sydney University's generosity in permitting us the use of its facilities to hold MAS events such as the Macarthur Astronomy Forum and the Campbelltown Rotary Observatory for public viewing nights.
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