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Staunton River Star Party spring 2021

Stu Beaber
 

Hi everyone...I found this on line this morning. In case you were hoping for a spring star party...ain't gonna happen!

Stu


Posted 05 February 2021 - 08:01 AM

Greetings everyone,

 

Sorry for the delay of getting this out to everyone. 

 

The Star Party is CANCELLED as you probably suspected. The State of Virginia has limited the size of group down to 10. 

Also the park staff is minimal due to the pandemic as well. Even if the state lifted the group limits, the park wouldn't have enough time to hire the staff it would need to handle the star party. It's a multi faceted issue. 

 

So we are looking ahead to October. Hopefully things will be better by then.

 

That being said - - - - - - - -

 

The park is still open and observing is still available. Even though the star party is not happening, if a group up to  10  would like to come up and observe on the field or by the pool complex. This can be arranged. Social distancing would be the key. 

 

Talk with Stephanie or Camron at the park. 434-572-4623.

 

You can reach me at; spacenuut@...

 

Clear Skies and stay safe!

 

Jayme Hanzak

President of CHAOS

www.chaosastro.org

www.stauntonriver-starparty.org


Online viewing session

Jeffrey Thornton
 

Looks like were having cloudy skies around the area tonight, but its clear in southeastern Arizona!  This telescope is allowing online viewers to look through it scope tonight starting at 9PM. Follow the link below.

https://kasonline.org/viewing.html

Enjoy Jeff


Re: Saturday solar report

Ted Forte
 

Haven’t been out today, but I could make the same report for yesterday – very blank in white light with very little activity in h-alpha.

 

Ted

 

From: BackBayAstro@groups.io <BackBayAstro@groups.io> On Behalf Of Kent Blackwell
Sent: Saturday, February 6, 2021 7:59 AM
To: BackBayAstro@groups.io
Subject: [BackBayAstro] Saturday solar report

 

There isn’t much to report. Two small prominences on the SE limb in H-alpha light.

Zero sunspots in white light. The sun has been so boring at least 2 or 3 years.


Re: Astronomical League "seeing and transparency"

Ted Forte
 

In regards to the Urban List program, and suitable seeing/transparency ratings,  the only opinion that might actually matter is that of the program coordinator, Terry Trees, as he is the final word on what’s acceptable. The Urban List is one program where conditions, at least sky brightness, is of some importance as the point of the program is to observe objects in light polluted skies.

 

That said, all of the League coordinators (as one myself, I can report that we actually discuss this sort of thing among  ourselves -LOL)  recognize that it is all very subjective.  My advice is to just pick a method you like and stick with it – no one is going to challenge you on it.

 

Keep in mind that the primary objective for all of these observing programs is to encourage observers to get out and observe and to have fun doing it. Confession: In my own review of logs for the Planetary Nebula Program, I don’t pay the observer’s assessment of seeing/transparency or sky quality any notice at all.  It simply isn’t important.  The idea of assigning values to sky conditions is really more for the observer’s use in comparing observations.  As long as you are relatively consistent, they might be of some utility in, say,  figuring out why you missed a structure that your buddy reported seeing. 

 

The “philosophy” behind having observers report sky conditions is presumably so that a coordinator can compare observations, but if you don’t see the flaw in that position, there is little sense in trying to argue the point.

 

Ted


Saturday solar report

Kent Blackwell
 

There isn’t much to report. Two small prominences on the SE limb in H-alpha light.

Zero sunspots in white light. The sun has been so boring at least 2 or 3 years.


Re: 2021 Total Solar Eclipse

Kent Blackwell
 

Robert Hitt and I were signed up on an eclipse cruise but cancelled and our deposit was refunded. It’s just not worth the risk with the pandemic. Maybe I can buy that 6” Takahashi now. LOL.


Re: 2021 Total Solar Eclipse

jimcoble2000
 

You both funny! The polar regions have the worst cloud cover of anywhere in the world. Not to mention the odds of contracting a potentially fatal disease on a ship. I know, believe me. I have personally  seen how an illness (read been the recipient of) goes through a ship like lightning. You could not pay me to board a ship now.

On Friday, February 5, 2021, 8:45:05 PM EST, Jim Tallman <jctallman@...> wrote:


You funny. Kentbis already there!


On Feb 5, 2021 at 20:15, George Reynolds via groups.io <pathfinder027@...> wrote:

Hey, Kent,

Have you signed up yet for the 2021 Solar Eclipse Cruise?  It's called the "Luxury Antarctica Solar Eclipse Expedition" Nov 29 to Dec 15, 2021.  Why, that's in the middle of summer down there!  

George



Re: Astronomical League "seeing and transparency"

jimcoble2000
 

Oh. Good luck on quantifying so subjective  a thing as seeing and transparency. I have no doubt that there is a range of possibilities but finding an objective standard is I fear a fools errand. It so depends on the observer, his or her experience, what instrument they are using, and what moment they choose to assign a qualitative assessment of both. All these categories are questionable.

Some one who observes double stars constantly probably has a much better understanding than the casual observer. Today there are few dedicated double star observers understandably. I pick double stars as they seem to me to be the simplest standard for judging seeing  limits. I have heard seasoned observers state that the atmosphere here allows only a three arc second discrimination. In my experience that is far too pessimistic. Kent and I have observed doubles to around 0.89 arc second separation on a regular basis. This just shows how variable the definitions are, not that Kent or I are the final word on what is possible. Not even close.  It can also change within the space of a half an hour.

So what to do? I have a set of standard test stars that give a good guide to seeing assessment.

That said, the standard you enclose seems reasonable enough as a personal standard.

On Friday, February 5, 2021, 6:59:34 PM EST, Jim Tallman <jctallman@...> wrote:


You do know you can make your owe observing log, print it out, and keep it in a binder? 

:)


On Feb 5, 2021 at 13:41, Jonathan Scheetz <jonathan@...> wrote:

I plan to start working on the Astronomical League's "Urban Observing Program".
For recording log entries it requires entries for "seeing and transparency"
I would like to use Sky Safari and Live Sky to log my observations but it does not have separate entries for seeing and transparency.

It has the following for "seeing" and "sky quality" (where sky quality is a measure of brightness not transparency)


Will recording seeing based on the definitions above be sufficient or will I have to use another log mechanism that allows me to specify transparency.

Thank you.


Re: 2021 Total Solar Eclipse

Jim Tallman
 

You funny. Kentbis already there!


On Feb 5, 2021 at 20:15, George Reynolds via groups.io <pathfinder027@...> wrote:

Hey, Kent,

Have you signed up yet for the 2021 Solar Eclipse Cruise?  It's called the "Luxury Antarctica Solar Eclipse Expedition" Nov 29 to Dec 15, 2021.  Why, that's in the middle of summer down there!  

George



2021 Total Solar Eclipse

George Reynolds
 

Hey, Kent,

Have you signed up yet for the 2021 Solar Eclipse Cruise?  It's called the "Luxury Antarctica Solar Eclipse Expedition" Nov 29 to Dec 15, 2021.  Why, that's in the middle of summer down there!  

George


Re: Astronomical League "seeing and transparency"

Jim Tallman
 

You do know you can make your owe observing log, print it out, and keep it in a binder? 

:)


On Feb 5, 2021 at 13:41, Jonathan Scheetz <jonathan@...> wrote:

I plan to start working on the Astronomical League's "Urban Observing Program".
For recording log entries it requires entries for "seeing and transparency"
I would like to use Sky Safari and Live Sky to log my observations but it does not have separate entries for seeing and transparency.

It has the following for "seeing" and "sky quality" (where sky quality is a measure of brightness not transparency)


Will recording seeing based on the definitions above be sufficient or will I have to use another log mechanism that allows me to specify transparency.

Thank you.


Re: Astronomical League "seeing and transparency"

vp
 

Good idea, Jonathan.  Sounds like you've got it figured out.  Best luck on your Urban List.  I have just one more object to find on mine.

George
On February 5, 2021 4:27 PM Jonathan Scheetz <jonathan@...> wrote:


I can just record the transparency in the session comments instead of the  individual observation.  That should work.

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



Re: Astronomical League "seeing and transparency"

Jonathan Scheetz
 

I can just record the transparency in the session comments instead of the  individual observation.  That should work.


Astronomical League "seeing and transparency"

Jonathan Scheetz
 

I plan to start working on the Astronomical League's "Urban Observing Program".
For recording log entries it requires entries for "seeing and transparency"
I would like to use Sky Safari and Live Sky to log my observations but it does not have separate entries for seeing and transparency.

It has the following for "seeing" and "sky quality" (where sky quality is a measure of brightness not transparency)


Will recording seeing based on the definitions above be sufficient or will I have to use another log mechanism that allows me to specify transparency.

Thank you.


Re: BBAA Zoom Meeting Link

vp
 

Shawn,

Rich had a great presentation tonight; however, it was pretty advanced, and over the head of any new astronomers.  Maybe I could do a future meeting feature aimed at the newbie, using Stellarium to illustrate things to know and look for.

We would have to market it in advance to attract the newbies.

George
On February 4, 2021 4:44 PM Shawn Loescher <shawn.loescher@...> wrote:


In case anyone needs the Zoom link for the meeting tonight here it is: https://vccs.zoom.us/j/96840800899

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



BBAA Zoom Meeting Link

Shawn Loescher
 

In case anyone needs the Zoom link for the meeting tonight here it is: https://vccs.zoom.us/j/96840800899


Newsletter Input

Richard W Roberts
 

Astro-buddies, 

I'm looking to re-start the BBAA newsletter and publish on a quarterly schedule. I'm going to produce one in March and continue on from there. 

I need your help! 

Please send me your best astro-photos and a description how you pulled it off. 

Please send me write-ups about our public events, such as the great conjunction. 

Have your performed a DiY project recently? 

Do you have a white whale out there that you've long tried to observe only to be twarted, or maybe you finally conquered it after years of struggle? 

If so, please share! 

I'd also interested in putting together observer profiles which will help us all get to know each other better and where our individual expertise lies. 

If you'd be willing, send me an email answering some or all of the following question. Feel free to add anything else relevant. If you don't want to type all that up but rather talk it out. That's cool too. Let me know and I'll set up an interview either by phone or zoom. 

- tell us how you got started, what piqued your interest in astronomy.
- Describe your equipment, what's your dream set-up. 
- what's your favorite object, the thing you keep going back to. 
- why did you join the BBAA? What events do you like to attend or what would you like us to add?
- Any tips that only you know? 
- If not observing, what else do you like to do?
- Who are some people who helped you along the way
- Are you involved with any other astronomy related organizations? what do you like about them? 
- What's your proudest accomplishment? 

These are some example questions, but feel free to share what else you'd like to share. 

If you'd like to contribute, please send an e-mail to editor@...

Thanks again!
Rich Roberts (RRIA)


Re: A cold night to observe

Ian Stewart
 

Well Kent you are a better man than me. I got through about half the list before the moon washed things out. Takes me a while to find things without DSCs etc. Still a wonderful way to spend an evening.
Cheers
Ian


Re: A cold night to observe

Kent Blackwell
 

Yes, use my list by all means. The 1” pairs are real fun. 29 degrees last night is sounding like a heat wave compared to what you’re used to!


Re: A cold night to observe

Ian Stewart
 

Hey Kent, looks like a most productive evening. Thanks for sharing your observing list and observations. I hope you don't mind but I'll use it as a guide tonight. i can remember getting out to my observatory in Canada about 40 years ago and it being 30 or 40 below. Couldn't do that anymore. This is cold enough.

Cheers

Ian

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