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Nairn’s Star

nairn robertson (2)

On this anniversary of the passing of our member Nairn Robertson, we’ve received some fabulous news. You’ll recall that Nairn was the young man that we took on as a member after the Make a Wish Foundation gave him a telescope which we taught him to use. Nairn’s telescope is now at our observatory for the use of members. Nairn’s uncle Dean has now had a star named for Nairn:

RA 1 h, 21m, 19.09s

DEC +58° 19′ 54.8″


November Monthly meeting

The Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) is the world’s most powerful observatory for studying the universe at the long-wavelength millimeter and submillimeter range of light. It’s designed to spot some of the most distant, ancient galaxies ever seen, and to probe the areas around young stars for planets in the process of forming.Our November meeting will feature a talk by Doug Scott of the physics department of UBC about ALMA and his work with it.
The meeting time is 7:30PM at the Sunshine Coast Arts Centre at 5714 Medusa St. in Sechelt. Hope to see you there.

Service Award for Bill Clark!

Club founder Bill Clark was presented with the RASC Meritorious Service Award by RASC Past President James Edgar at our AGM on Friday. From the starting group of 16 local astronomers the club has grown to 72 at present and is one of the more active centres in the ranks of the RASC today, a lot of the credit for this goes to Bill! Thanks Bill! Pictures by Daniel Sklazeski

Last chance to see AR2683

I took advantage of good seeing on October 5th to capture this image of AR2683 before it traveled over the solar horizon. The smaller sunspot is AR2682.

The image was taken with a PG Chameleon camera through a 2x Barlow and a Herschel Wedge on an ED80 scope, the image scale was 0.78 arcsecs/px.



Observatory Update

David is shown here putting the finishing touches to the cover he made to protect the roof opening/closing mechanism. It also keeps curious fingers from getting trapped.

The electrical system with its safety interlocks is fully functional now and moving the roof is done by pushing a button. Very smooth!


Solar Activity

Those of us who were at the Botanical Garden event on sunday got to share views of several enormous sunspots or groups. On Monday I decided to try to get some images of these spots. The image below is in Hydrogen alpha light and the sunspot group (AR 2674) is spread across the centre of the solar disc. The more interesting sunspot AR 2673 is the one with the prominent white features. I took the image a couple of hours after this spot had discharged a massive coronal mass ejection earthward – unfortunately I wasn’t imaging at the moment the ejection took place. This sunspot has already been responsible for at least 3 major solar flares including the biggest solar flare for a decade, an X9.

The magnified image reveals the currents seething and writhing in the plasma, driven by the suns’ magnetic fields.


Eclipse images

I have just created a page to showcase the images taken around last weeks Solar Eclipse. The new gallery includes images such as these from club member Ed Hanlon. They were taken with a DSLR through a simple refractor equipped with a solar filter. He popped the filter off at the moment of totality. They have been converted to monochrome for this montage. To see all the images please goto: Eclipse Images




And here is a great image of the “Diamond Ring”, this time in colour with some of the solar chromosphere visible on either side of the diamond.