Category: Articles

Long Distance Gibberish

Image Credit: https://voyager.jpl.nasa.gov In 1977 when at college in Coventry I met a very nice fellow student and my world changed. In 1982 we got married. Since then on odd occasions she says I talk gibberish. She’s usually right. Another world changing event occurred in 1977. The launch of the space probes Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 that took advantage of a rare lining up of the outer planets. These craft delivered many surprises…


Chronology of a Cornish Aurora 10/11th May

It’s been a while since we saw a Auroral display like this in Cornwall, but on the night of 10/11 May, many club members from as far as South and West in Newlyn, to as North and East in Carnewas were treated to one of nature’s greatest lightshows. But’s let go back a few days and show the progression of Sunspot AR3664 which produced the spectacular display we saw a few days later. We…


Twinkle, Twinkle GINORMOUS Star

Looking up at a Chinese night sky Confucius poetically said: “Stars are holes in the sky from which the light of the infinite shines.” Scientifically, we now know that the stars are actually giant balls of hydrogen converting to helium in a nuclear fusion process and kicking out huge amounts of heat, light, plasma, particles and radiation in the process. But is our Sun a “normal” size and “type” of star and how does it compare…


Technique for Combining Continuum and Emission Wavelength Data in Astrophotography

by Dean Ashton, April 2024 There are many examples where we image an object that is predominantly a full continuumspectrum object, a galaxy or a reflection nebula for example, but it also contains emissionline nebulae components. Capturing both a full spectrum RGB image and narrowbandemission image which are then combined may reveal more information about the objectand create a more interesting and complete image. With so many new advances in Pixinsight processing methods, one…


Collision Course – Brace for Impact!

You will probably have heard of the Hubble Space Telescope. It has orbited our planet 333 miles up since 1990 and has spectacularly opened up our view of the Universe with many beautiful images and discoveries. It was named after the American astronomer Edwin Hubble. He fought in the Great War and when he returned in 1919, Hubble joined the Mount Wilson Observatory with its 100-inch mirror Hooker Telescope that was the most powerful…


Largest Sunspot Group of Cycle 25

Last month ( February) solar observers had a real treat observing the largest Sunspot group of the current solar cycle No25 . Peter Meadows of the BAA Solar section wrote “In addition to producing 3 X-flares over the last day or so, sunspot group AR 13590 is also the largest of this cycle so far. Today (23rd Feb) it reached an area of 1800 millionths of the Sun’s visible hemisphere (MSH). It is an…