Sunday, March 09, 2014

Sheffield Astro Society

Last night, 8th March, saw the Sheffield Astro Society visit one of their preferred dark sites at the car park for Surprise View, Derbyshire.  MJ and I decided to go as I had never been to an "event" like this before and MJ had only been to a meeting of the Baker Street Irregulars before and what a night.

The event was to showcase the Moon, Jupiter and Orion and judging by the ooh's and aah's by the 30 or so people who attended they succeeded in their goal.  It was great to see so many people, all of whom were very interested, MJ's telescope was getting quite a bit of attention, and the Society's staff were knowledgeable and polite.

The pictures above were taken on a Olympus Pen E PL1  using a one minute exposure and have been processed to get rid of some of the orange light

There was some cloud cover around 7pm which lifted slightly during the night but the Moon, Jupiter and Orion were visible.

 The Moon with Orion clearly visible to the left centre of the picture
 A rare shot of MJ and Al together.  MJ's Vixen scope is in the foreground and Orion over our heads.

Whereas I didn't bring my telescope I did bring my Celestron 8-24mm zoom eyepiece and camera, obviously.  So using my T-adapter we connected the camera to the scope and took the resulting images.  To say neither of us have combined each others equipment before we were reasonably happy with the results.  There were regulars of the Society there with laptops who were filming Jupiter, stacking and processing the image there and then.  Oh, to have such kit!

 The Moon. 1/80sec ISO 250
 An attempt at the Orion Nebula (from previous pictures you can see the moon was bleaching out a lot of the light)

Overall it was a great night, in fact MJ said it was his best night out with a telescope ever!   I think to be with like minded individuals who don't mind getting cold can only be a good thing.

The Dark Site (the idea for this comes courtesy of a gentleman called Karl I met at the event who's version was a lot better!)


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