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)

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Looking again at using SA-100 diffraction grating and DSLR for stellar spectroscopy demonstration; when the clouds go away, find a Type A star for calibration

 Greetings from Palmia Observatory

Well this week we are revisiting some spectroscopy work done way back in January 2018 for the purpose of preparing a presentation at the OCA Astrophysics SIG.

Friday, May 19, 2023

Starship launch video shows rubber rocket effect; Digital image distortion effects with rolling shutter vs. global shutter technology

 Greetings from Palmia Observatory

We watched the first orbital launch attempt of the SpaceX Starship online.  It didn't make it to orbit, but that story is told elsewhere.  Here we want to discuss the optical illusion displayed in the launch videos where the rocket seemed to be made of rubber and was wildly bending in all sorts of directions.

Tuesday, April 18, 2023

Some comments on recent developments in fusion power research by TAE as discussed at CSULB Physics Colloquium

 Greetings from Palmia Observatory

Stars are powered by fusion and the potential benefits of fusion power here on Earth are of interest and some latest results by TAE, formally Tri-Alpha Energy, as described at the April 17 CSULB Physics Colloquium are covered here.

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Some more on the five planet alignment; Looking for Mars; Lunar X and Lunar Y?

 Greetings from Palmia Observatory,

Well last evening we missed two of planets in alignment, but did go out to take a look at Mars.

Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Looking for Uranus with a DSLR in city lights; Upcoming rare planetary alignment; New PrimeScan 3D dental imaging; Gender Neutrality?

 Greetings from Palmia Observatory

Well with the upcoming 5 planet alignment coming up later, we wanted to do some DSLR imaging practice of capturing Uranus, which is is very close now to bright Venus.

Tuesday, February 14, 2023

Moonbow from Julian?; Rainbow Physics; ChatGPT on Moonbows; What if AI goes rouge and other tangential jokes and source of UFOs?

 Greetings from Palmia Observatory

This week we were reminded of the Moonbow phenomena and will comment and look into the physics and then finish up with fun with some jokes.

Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Sadly, we report on the passing of Astronomer Assistant Willow; We will miss you, Willow!

 Sad Greetings from Palmia Observatory,

Astronomer Assistant Willow has been part of the observatory staff for about 17 years and passed away today.

Monday, January 23, 2023

First attempt to capture Comet ZTF (C/2022 E3); Impressive size reduction in auto transponders; New Tesla Model Y; Some comments on AAS241 meeting; Drawing with your drink!

 Greetings from Palmia Observatory,

Well, we will report on our first attempt to capture Comet ZTF (C/2022 E3), which is predicted to reach magnitude 6.2 and then review some observatory news and finally comment again on AAS41 meeting.

Monday, January 16, 2023

Tuesday, January 10, 2023

Machine Learning in Astronomy; One example exploring the Artificial Intelligence ChatGPT with a simple conversation about philosopher Paul Feyerabend

 Greetings from Palmia Observatory

The use of artificial intelligence systems and machine learning is being applied to many astronomical observations.  These techniques are especially valuable for large datasets and many papers report good success while a few identify some of its spectacular failures also.  

Sunday, January 8, 2023

Greetings and Happy New Year 2023; AAS241 starting live; Some Equations, models and more models; Don't blame the Moon; Using ChatGPT on physics exams; What goes in the Tesla front trunk?

 Greetings from Palmia Observatory

Well its been a while since we last posted.  It has just been a trying time of year, but let's mention a few items hopefully of interest to the physicist wannabes.