Date   

Re: Happy Halloween

Paul
 

I'm missing those Halloween contests at ECSP!


On Sat, Oct 31, 2020 at 4:09 PM jimcoble2000 via groups.io <jimcoble2000=yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:
good report

On Saturday, October 31, 2020, 10:31:07 AM EDT, Kent Blackwell <kent@...> wrote:


I'm so scared! With the pandemic I'm not expecting many trick-or-treaters at my house tonight, especially since the youngest person in my Kempsville neighborhood is 37 years old.

Here's a solar report on this Halloween day:
H-alpha light: 2 tiny prominences
White light: ZERO

Kent


Re: Happy Halloween

jimcoble2000
 

good report

On Saturday, October 31, 2020, 10:31:07 AM EDT, Kent Blackwell <kent@...> wrote:


I'm so scared! With the pandemic I'm not expecting many trick-or-treaters at my house tonight, especially since the youngest person in my Kempsville neighborhood is 37 years old.

Here's a solar report on this Halloween day:
H-alpha light: 2 tiny prominences
White light: ZERO

Kent


In case you missed it

Ted Forte
 

 

Just a bit of follow up on the O-Rex mission:

The OSIRIS-REx mission has successfully stowed the spacecraft’s Sample Return Capsule (SRC) and its abundant sample of asteroid Bennu. On Wednesday, Oct. 28, the mission team sent commands to the spacecraft, instructing it to close the capsule – marking the end of one of the most challenging phases of the mission.

Captured on Oct. 28, this imaging sequence shows NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft completing the final step of the sample stowage process: closing its SRC. To seal the SRC, the spacecraft closes the lid and then secures two internal latches. The sample of Bennu is now safely stored and ready for its journey to Earth.

The mission team spent two days working around the clock to carry out the stowage procedure, with preparations for the stowage event beginning last weekend. The process to stow the sample is unique compared to other spacecraft operations and required the team’s continuous oversight and input over the two-day period. For the spacecraft to proceed with each step in the stowage sequence, the team had to assess images and telemetry from the previous step to confirm the operation was successful and the spacecraft was ready to continue. Given that OSIRIS-REx is currently more than 205 million miles (330 million km) from Earth, this required the team to also work with a greater than 18.5-minute time delay for signals traveling in each direction.

Throughout the process, the OSIRIS-REx team continually assessed the Touch-And-Go Sample Acquisition Mechanism’s (TAGSAM) wrist alignment to ensure the collector head was being placed properly into the SRC. Additionally, the team inspected images to observe any material escaping from the collector head to confirm that no particles would hinder the stowage process. StowCam images of the stowage sequence show that a few particles escaped during the stowage procedure, but the team is confident that a plentiful amount of material remains inside of the head.

“Given the complexity of the process to place the sample collector head onto the capture ring, we expected that it would take a few attempts to get it in the perfect position,” said Rich Burns, OSIRIS-REx project manager at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. “Fortunately, the head was captured on the first try, which allowed us to expeditiously execute the stow procedure.”

By the evening of Oct. 27, the spacecraft’s TAGSAM arm had placed the collector head into the SRC. The following morning, the OSIRIS-REx team verified that the collector head was thoroughly fastened into the capsule by performing a “backout check.” This sequence commanded the TAGSAM arm to attempt to back out of the capsule – which tugged on the collector head and ensured the latches are well secured.

“On the afternoon of Oct. 28, following the backout check, the mission team sent commands to disconnect the two mechanical parts on the TAGSAM arm that connect the sampler head to the arm. The spacecraft first cut the tube that carried the nitrogen gas that stirred up the sample through the TAGSAM head during sample collection, and then separated the collector head from the TAGSAM arm itself.

That evening, the spacecraft completed the final step of the sample stowage process  –closing the SRC. To secure the capsule, the spacecraft closed the lid and then fastened two internal latches. As of late Oct. 28, the sample of Bennu is safely stored and ready for its journey to Earth.

 


Happy Halloween

Kent Blackwell
 

I'm so scared! With the pandemic I'm not expecting many trick-or-treaters at my house tonight, especially since the youngest person in my Kempsville neighborhood is 37 years old.

Here's a solar report on this Halloween day:
H-alpha light: 2 tiny prominences
White light: ZERO

Kent


Re: GS Cancelled last night

Kent Blackwell
 

One can never, ever predict the weather, and it varies widely. For instance, it was clear in Virginia Beach. I observed double stars with my 120mm & 80mm refractors, plus Mars and a very, very B-R-I-G-H-T moon. Seeing was only 7/10 but with a 52-degree temperature, and no mosquitoes it felt like Fall has arrived.


Re: GS Cancelled last night

vp
 

Thanks, Ted, for the insights on Garden Stars.  I knew it started in 2005 or 2004.

George
On October 28, 2020 11:17 AM Ted Forte <tedforte511@...> wrote:


The first Gardenstars I attended (I think it was the very first one, but I’m not sure) was on March 13 or 14 (?) 2004 “Kevin and Barb Weiner, Bruce Bodner, George Reynolds, Rob Schonk, Steve Hamilton, and about 17 guests”   I set up the 18-inch that night and we spent about 3 hours there.


I don’t recall exactly how Gardenstars got started but I seem to recall that the idea was first floated at a TASE conference.  The Tidewater Association of Science Educators would have a convention-like event at an area school once a year.  I was a member and attended them from around 2000 until TASE was dissolved.  We would have three or so members attend with a display and solar set up.  I remember being approached about doing a joint event with the Botanical Gardens  at a TASE event  about a year before, it actually came to be.


Ted


From: BackBayAstro@groups.io <BackBayAstro@groups.io> On Behalf Of George Reynolds via groups.io
Sent: Wednesday, October 28, 2020 7:44 AM
To: BBAA-Group <backbayastro@groups.io>
Subject: [BackBayAstro] GS Cancelled last night


Sorry to say, last night's Garden Stars was cancelled by Norfolk Botanical Garden due to weather.  The sky was totally overcast.  I didn't get the word, though NBG had left me a voicemail and sent an email, so I showed up at the gate and couldn't get in.  I used the call button at the gate, and the security guard told me GS was cancelled.

 

I didn't carry my phone all day yesterday, and didn't check my email, so I was not aware of the cancellation.  In prior years, Garden Stars was a "rain or shine" activity.  If the weather did not permit outdoor viewing, we would extend the indoor presentation.  However, over the past two years or so, they have decided to cancel when clouds or rain interfered with outdoor observing.  I guess the people who paid money to look through telescopes were disappointed when they were unable to do so.

 

It's hard to believe that we have been doing Garden Stars for more than fifteen years.  I can't remember when we started, but it was initiated by former member Steve Hamilton.  I started with him, and have been to almost every one since then.  It's a good chance to acquaint new people with astronomy.

 

George

 


George Reynolds

"Solar System Ambassador" for South Hampton Roads, Virginia

Back Bay Amateur Astronomers (BBAA) 
http://www.backbayastro.org


 



George Reynolds 
VP, Back Bay Amateur Astronomers 
BBAA 
Outreach Coordinator
backbayastro.org



Re: GS Cancelled last night

Ted Forte
 

The first Gardenstars I attended (I think it was the very first one, but I’m not sure) was on March 13 or 14 (?) 2004 “Kevin and Barb Weiner, Bruce Bodner, George Reynolds, Rob Schonk, Steve Hamilton, and about 17 guests”   I set up the 18-inch that night and we spent about 3 hours there.

 

I don’t recall exactly how Gardenstars got started but I seem to recall that the idea was first floated at a TASE conference.  The Tidewater Association of Science Educators would have a convention-like event at an area school once a year.  I was a member and attended them from around 2000 until TASE was dissolved.  We would have three or so members attend with a display and solar set up.  I remember being approached about doing a joint event with the Botanical Gardens  at a TASE event  about a year before, it actually came to be.

 

Ted

 

From: BackBayAstro@groups.io <BackBayAstro@groups.io> On Behalf Of George Reynolds via groups.io
Sent: Wednesday, October 28, 2020 7:44 AM
To: BBAA-Group <backbayastro@groups.io>
Subject: [BackBayAstro] GS Cancelled last night

 

Sorry to say, last night's Garden Stars was cancelled by Norfolk Botanical Garden due to weather.  The sky was totally overcast.  I didn't get the word, though NBG had left me a voicemail and sent an email, so I showed up at the gate and couldn't get in.  I used the call button at the gate, and the security guard told me GS was cancelled.

 

I didn't carry my phone all day yesterday, and didn't check my email, so I was not aware of the cancellation.  In prior years, Garden Stars was a "rain or shine" activity.  If the weather did not permit outdoor viewing, we would extend the indoor presentation.  However, over the past two years or so, they have decided to cancel when clouds or rain interfered with outdoor observing.  I guess the people who paid money to look through telescopes were disappointed when they were unable to do so.

 

It's hard to believe that we have been doing Garden Stars for more than fifteen years.  I can't remember when we started, but it was initiated by former member Steve Hamilton.  I started with him, and have been to almost every one since then.  It's a good chance to acquaint new people with astronomy.

 

George

 


George Reynolds

"Solar System Ambassador" for South Hampton Roads, Virginia

Back Bay Amateur Astronomers (BBAA) 
http://www.backbayastro.org


 


GS Cancelled last night

George Reynolds
 

Sorry to say, last night's Garden Stars was cancelled by Norfolk Botanical Garden due to weather.  The sky was totally overcast.  I didn't get the word, though NBG had left me a voicemail and sent an email, so I showed up at the gate and couldn't get in.  I used the call button at the gate, and the security guard told me GS was cancelled.

I didn't carry my phone all day yesterday, and didn't check my email, so I was not aware of the cancellation.  In prior years, Garden Stars was a "rain or shine" activity.  If the weather did not permit outdoor viewing, we would extend the indoor presentation.  However, over the past two years or so, they have decided to cancel when clouds or rain interfered with outdoor observing.  I guess the people who paid money to look through telescopes were disappointed when they were unable to do so.

It's hard to believe that we have been doing Garden Stars for more than fifteen years.  I can't remember when we started, but it was initiated by former member Steve Hamilton.  I started with him, and have been to almost every one since then.  It's a good chance to acquaint new people with astronomy.

George


George Reynolds

"Solar System Ambassador" for South Hampton Roads, Virginia
Back Bay Amateur Astronomers (BBAA) 
http://www.backbayastro.org


 


BBAA Meeting Thursday, November 5 at 7:30 pm

George Reynolds
 

Remember to attend the November meeting of the club!  It will be hels online via Zoom at the following link:

https://vccs.zoom.us/j/96840800899

Meeting ID: 968 4080 0899

November is also ELECTION month.  We will be electing two officers, to fill the slots of Secretary and Treasurer.  Please consider volunteering for one of those positions, or nominating someone.  

We also need a newsletter editor.  If you like to write, or want to hone your skills, please volunteer.

The past two meetings have been sparsely attended, even though you don't have to leave home to attend.  Please RESERVE THIS DATE AND TIME and make it a point to join the BBAA meeting in November.

See you there!

George

George Reynolds

"Solar System Ambassador" for South Hampton Roads, Virginia
Back Bay Amateur Astronomers (BBAA) 
http://www.backbayastro.org


 


Garden Stars -- AGAIN

George Reynolds
 

Another Garden Stars event is on tap for tomorrow night at 7:30 pm, 10/27/2020.  It was the one originally scheduled, but when they rescheduled the September session to Oct 22, I thought they dropped this one, so I took it off our calendar.  Not so!  There are 15 people signed up for tomorrow night's Garden Stars, so we will need someone from the club to come and bring a telescope.  

I will give the talk and then bring the group outside.  I'll have my little ShortTube 80mm refractor.  The Moon will be nearly Full.

I hope someone can come.  Sorry for the slip-up.

George


George Reynolds

"Solar System Ambassador" for South Hampton Roads, Virginia
Back Bay Amateur Astronomers (BBAA) 
http://www.backbayastro.org


 


Re: Viewing Mars

jimcoble2000
 

I agree aesthetically the unfiltered views are the most pleasant though filters are quite useful for whatever detail you can get and some details can't be seen without them. This has been the best apparition I have seen in decades and the best we are likely to see in the next two decades (for some of us the last good one most likely!). After Mars recedes you can sell or put away your colored filters except the 56 green for Jupiter next year.Emoji

On Friday, October 23, 2020, 10:25:23 AM EDT, Kent Blackwell <kent@...> wrote:


Here are my notes from viewing Mars last night in a small 120/900 refractor. It really is the best opposition I have ever seen. I tried all my filters, including nebula filters. Oddly enough, some deep sky brought out details. I found the older OIII and UHC to be more effective than the newer versions. Overall, it's hard to beat the view without filters.

Mars (Planet in Pisces) Observed: Oct 22, 2020 at 9:55:37 PM Comment: Once again Mars looked wonderful tonight, but not comparable to how it looks in the 16". The tiny but bright white polar cap stood out. The best view was with the 5mm Pentax at 180x. I tried all my color filters and nebula filters but still prefer the view with no filter. I like red Wratten 25 for surface detail. The Tele Vue Mars A and the Vernonscope Wratten 85 Salmon are very close. Oddly I also liked the old Lumicon OIII & UHC (older "red" version) and the Orion UltraBlock. My camera ND 0.3 was also very satisfying. The Vernonscope polarizer looked very similar to no filter, only dimmer. That might be an ideal filter in a large telescope, but not the 120mm.


Viewing Mars

Kent Blackwell
 

Here are my notes from viewing Mars last night in a small 120/900 refractor. It really is the best opposition I have ever seen. I tried all my filters, including nebula filters. Oddly enough, some deep sky brought out details. I found the older OIII and UHC to be more effective than the newer versions. Overall, it's hard to beat the view without filters.

Mars (Planet in Pisces) Observed: Oct 22, 2020 at 9:55:37 PM Comment: Once again Mars looked wonderful tonight, but not comparable to how it looks in the 16". The tiny but bright white polar cap stood out. The best view was with the 5mm Pentax at 180x. I tried all my color filters and nebula filters but still prefer the view with no filter. I like red Wratten 25 for surface detail. The Tele Vue Mars A and the Vernonscope Wratten 85 Salmon are very close. Oddly I also liked the old Lumicon OIII & UHC (older "red" version) and the Orion UltraBlock. My camera ND 0.3 was also very satisfying. The Vernonscope polarizer looked very similar to no filter, only dimmer. That might be an ideal filter in a large telescope, but not the 120mm.


Garden Stars tonight

George Reynolds
 

I will be there with a PowerPoint slide show, telescope, and handout materials.

There will be a spectacular view of the Moon tonight, in between Jupiter and Saturn.

We should have a good group.  I hope to see some club members there, along with Chuck and me.

George


George Reynolds

"Solar System Ambassador" for South Hampton Roads, Virginia
Back Bay Amateur Astronomers (BBAA) 
http://www.backbayastro.org


 


Re: Garden Stars Thursday 10/22

charles jagow
 

George,

I should be there.


Sent from Chuck's iPhone

On Oct 21, 2020, at 11:22 PM, George Reynolds via groups.io <pathfinder027@...> wrote:

We are due to have a full house for Garden Stars. We'll need a few members with telescopes. There will be a nice conjunction of jupiter, the Moon, and Saturn.



Garden Stars Thursday 10/22

George Reynolds
 

We are due to have a full house for Garden Stars. We'll need a few members with telescopes. There will be a nice conjunction of jupiter, the Moon, and Saturn.


Re: Solar Prominence

Jim Tallman
 

Awesome prominence! I caught this sunspot a couple days ago. The spot looks like a little ghost :)








On Oct 21, 2020 at 10:11, Kent Blackwell <kent@...> wrote:

There has been a substantial prominence visible with H-alpha telescopes on the eastern limb of the sun the past few days and it’s even larger today (Wednesday 10/21/2022). There is also a small sunspot, if you’re using a property filtered white light instrument.


Re: O-REX Tag event went great!

vp
 

Hooray for you and NASA and the OSIRIS-REx mission!  I eagerly anticipate further info and pictures.

George
On October 20, 2020 6:33 PM Ted Forte <tedforte511@...> wrote:


So congratulations to the OSIRIS Rex mission team- all indications are that the TAG event at asteroid Bennu went perfectly.


Hopefully, there will be imagery from SamCam available to the public  tomorrow morning that will give us a good idea of how much sample might have been collected.  We won’t really know until this weekend, but it looks very, very, promising  so far! 


Ted


George Reynolds 
VP, Back Bay Amateur Astronomers 
BBAA 
Outreach Coordinator
backbayastro.org



Fw: Invitation to Attend Online Activities from the KAS

George Reynolds
 

I am forwarding this email I got from the Kalamazoo (Michigan) Astronomical Society, inviting us to participate in some of their online activities and resources.


George Reynolds

"Solar System Ambassador" for South Hampton Roads, Virginia
Back Bay Amateur Astronomers (BBAA) 
http://www.backbayastro.org


 


----- Forwarded Message -----

From: Richard Bell <richard.s.bell@...>
To: KAS <kas@...>
Sent: Tuesday, October 20, 2020, 04:08:55 PM EDT
Subject: Invitation to Attend Online Activities from the KAS

Attached is an invitation to attend three special online events my astronomy club will be holding during the Fall and Winter months. Please consider passing it along to your membership.

Thank you and clear skies!

Richard Bell
President
Kalamazoo Astronomical Society
https://www.kasonline.org/


Solar Prominence

Kent Blackwell
 

There has been a substantial prominence visible with H-alpha telescopes on the eastern limb of the sun the past few days and it’s even larger today (Wednesday 10/21/2022). There is also a small sunspot, if you’re using a property filtered white light instrument.


Re: O-REX Tag event went great!

Jim Tallman
 

Yep cause neither Norfolk or VB owned the parking lots! I'm sure the budget would have been blow if otherwise

:)


On Oct 20, 2020 at 19:37, jimcoble2000 via groups.io <jimcoble2000@...> wrote:

They found a parking spot?

On Tuesday, October 20, 2020, 6:37:32 PM EDT, Ian Stewart <ian@...> wrote:


Yep watched the live and sim. Very cool!


On Oct 20, 2020, at 6:33 PM, Ted Forte <tedforte511@...> wrote:



So congratulations to the OSIRIS Rex mission team- all indications are that the TAG event at asteroid Bennu went perfectly.

 

Hopefully, there will be imagery from SamCam available to the public  tomorrow morning that will give us a good idea of how much sample might have been collected.  We won’t really know until this weekend, but it looks very, very, promising  so far! 

 

Ted


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