What light through yonder window breaks?

October 19, 2011

Geoff Wyatt
The following email came in asking us to help identify a bright object in the night sky. It has a number of helpful observations and by Jove we love a challenge. “Dear Sir/Madam, I recently sent an email to Kate **** from the CSIRO Astronomy regarding a bright round light that appears nearly each night from around 8pm and at this time is is low in the sky in the south east.

Know your constellations: Tucana the Toucan

October 11, 2011

Nick Lomb
The constellation of Tucana the Toucan together with the neighbouring bright star Achernar. Drawing by Nick Lomb with Toucan image from Chris. P, Flickr. The constellation of Tucana the Toucan is currently (October) high in the southern sky.

Monty pictures a giant active sunspot – AR1302

September 28, 2011

Nick Lomb
The giant sunspot AR1302 spreads over 180 000 km across the Sun while the prominence on the right hand edge of the disc reaches a height of 84 000 km. Picture taken through a 10-inch (25-cm) Meade telescope with a hydrogen alpha filter.

October 2011 night sky guide podcast, transcript and star chart

September 28, 2011

To help you learn about the southern night sky, Sydney Observatory provides an audio guide/podcast, transcript of that audio, and a sky map or chart each month. This month's audio sky guide is presented by Dr Andrew Jacob, one of the astronomy educators at Sydney Observatory.

Toner reports that the Oddie telescope views the sky once more from Mt Stromlo Observatory, Canberra

September 25, 2011

Nick Lomb
Judith Bailey, Ballarat Observatory Director, peering through the new Oddie Telescope while James Oddie looks on with approval. Picture Toner Stevenson Saturday 24 September 2011 was the launch of the new Oddie telescope (Oddie II), a reconstruction that replaces the original Howard Grubb 9” (23–cm) refractor (lens) telescope (Oddie I), severely damaged in the January 2003 fires.

The Orionid meteor showing is coming or is it?

September 16, 2011

Geoff Wyatt
On a dark clear night who hasn’t looked up to see the last hint of meteor fading from sight? “Damn it why couldn’t I have seen all of it?” And then perhaps minutes, hours or nights later you do get to see one while everyone else is looking the wrong way!

Emma reports on Sydney Observatory’s past archaeology workshops

September 15, 2011

Geoff Wyatt
“Archaeology at Fort Phillip - The curious case of the mystery button” by Emma Shrapnel A button discovered at Sydney Observatory’s Fort Phillip archaeology site To some, this may look like an old, relatively ordinary button.