Apr 052012

A glorious sight in my 75mm APO refractor telescope last night. The night of April 3rd was cloudy when Venus was nicely in the main cluster, but I was still able to get both Venus and the Pleiades in the same field of view last night.

Venus is massively over-exposed here, but I like the effect of the burn-out and spikes it causes. You can just see the faint nebulosity around the main stars in the Pleiades. This image is the result of stacking 20 exposures each of 20 seconds using my ATIK 383L CCD camera and a white luminance filter – through the Pentax 75 APO.

 Posted by at 7:18 am

Moon, Venus and Jupiter from Bath

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Mar 272012

Took this image whilst parked on Brassknocker Hill just south of Bath. Just a bit earlier I had taken a series of killer images of the trio with Bath Abbey in the foreground with my son, Tom, only to discover that I had no memory card in the camera!

This image was about a 10 second exposure, the moon is deliberately over exposed in an attempt to pick up the stars in Orion and Taurus.

 Posted by at 7:33 am

The Moon, Jupiter and Venus

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Mar 262012

As described in my post on 22nd March this event was indeed a lovely sight yesterday evening with the young crescent moon very close to Jupiter and not far below Venus.  Take advantage of this current clear weather in the UK and watch out this evening when the Moon will be much closer to Venus

This image was taken from my garden in Ham with a Canon 350D using the standard 18-55mm lens. Setting were ISO800, f/5, 1/8th second exposure.

 Posted by at 6:54 am

Young Moon joins Venus and Jupiter

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Mar 222012

This image generated by Stellarium shows the situation from the UK, looking West, as it will be on Sunday March 25th 2012 at approximately 7:15 pm. The Moon will be a thin crescent of about 9%. Keen observers will have noticed that Venus and Jupiter have moved further apart since their beautiful conjuction last week, however this will still be a lovely event to see.

If you click on this image to see it a full size, you can see that Venus is not far below the Pleiades, or Seven Sisters which is a lovely, bright, open star cluster in Taurus. Orion, The Hunter, is just off to the East. Also notice the line on the image; This is the Ecliptic which marks the apparent path that the Sun follows through the sky over the course of the year. The planets can also be found close to the Ecliptic plane and this explains why they are also seen in the Zodiacal constellations (but don’t mention the 13th constellation of the Zodiac – Ophiuchus (The Serpent Bearer) as it upsets the astrologers!)

 Posted by at 1:48 pm