Observing with Street Lights

Observing with Street Lights
Dark sky sites not always necessary to see the Milky Way (This image was taken ouside of a B&B in Julian, CA)

Friday, May 29, 2015

Conference In the Year 2525, and our upcoming river cruise and a few astro images of moon and Jupiter and Saturn

Hey, we finally had a clear night for observing.  It was about time too because I was reaching the end of my tether and with a busy schedule this was the only night we were going to get until mid June.  I'm currently in Pasadena for a weekend conference "In the year 2525:  Big Science, Big History and the far future of humanity".  It should be great.  You old folks probably remember the  song, by the same title, which was a big hit when I was in college.  We'll see how these two visions differ.
> When I return, Resident Astronomer Peggy, and I will be packing up and vacationing on the Danube river cruise.  We won't have a scope, but I guess we will get to see

Monday, May 25, 2015

Poor observing weather this week, but new free courses online at Coursera

The weather has been so cloudy and even a bit rainy that observing day or night has just not been possible.  There was just a couple of early evenings before the clouds moved back in to block any stars.  So we had a lot of clouds and unfortunately hardly any rain.  On one of those early evenings, astronomer's assistant, Danny, was completing his final round of the observatory grounds, when Jupiter poked through the clouds, but by the time I returned with my camera, the clouds covered up everything.  On the next evening, I went outside a few minutes earlier and found

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Working with Astronomer Assistant Danny and looking at one paper about planet formation

Darn, the weather is just not cooperating this week.  We've had rain and both daytime solar and nighttime observing has been pretty much covered over.  The other resident astronomer, Peggy, has been out of town in San Diego this week babysitting 4 year old great nephew Jack.  I guess that means I'm in charge of the observatory?

Oops, I remember now my clear directions.  It's not that I'm now in charge of the observatory, but that I'm in charge of looking after Astronomer Helper, Danny.  Yes, that's right my first and most important assignment is to

Monday, May 11, 2015

Dynamic Astronomy Conference at Caltech and first successful H-alpha scope solar image

Well, I spent last week at Caltech for the Dynamic Astronomy conference and hoped that the weather would eventually improve so we could get some observing time in at the weekend.  The conference was a bit over my head, so I used some of my waiting time to look up in my textbook, "Planetary Science" some of the words and concepts that the speakers used in their presentations.  Dave recommended this book, and I really like it.  Thanks Dave.  I actually learned a lot about what was going on in that fashion.  Several of the presenters kept referring to the book, "Solar System Dynamics" by Murray and Dermott, as the gold standard when it comes to the dynamics theory.  Carl Murray was actually one of the next speakers, so afterwards I asked him about

Monday, May 4, 2015

Met with friends in northern california and tried out new scope

We just returned from our fantastic road trip to Northern California.  We had a good time visiting with our great friends Carroll and Tom.  It had been way too long since we had a chance to sit down together and so it was great when we could finally get together at their wonderful farm.  We wined and dined and had a delightful time experiencing the quiet and restful Lower Lake Farms on the outskirts of Placerville and even eventually found