Sky and Society Notes for April
See Sky Notes in particular.
Major night sky imaging proposal
The society has been offered a one-hour imaging session of an astronomical object of their choice on the Las Cumbres Global Telescope Network . The offer has come from Carl Pennypacker, one of the teams whose studies of supernovae led them to infer in 1998 the existence of dark energy driving the expansion of the universe. The society is keen to involve any members who wish to engage with this imaging project, including local schools if appropriate. We have until December to choose an object and conduct the imaging. Please get in touch here if you would like to be part of this project, or if you have any suggestions for imaging targets.
The meeting was reminded that the upcoming event at UCLAN in Preston: The Jeremiah Horrocks Spring Lecture Comets, Asteroids and Impacts. Should we worry and what can we do? Tuesday 15th May 2018 – 6:30 pm.
More volunteers are required for a few hours during the proposed Solar System in Kendal event on Saturday 18th August.
The next Member’s Observing evening will be in autumn when dark nights return.
The next public Moonwatch will be on Saturday 24th November
One member demonstrated an impressive difference in colour hues using Pixinsight on the Horsehead Nebula Not cheap software package but highly recommended for colour correction using a star catalogue. Now listed on our Links page under Software used by members
The farthest star ever detected has been imaged by the Hubble telescope, a Blue Giant in a galaxy nine billion light years distant: Hubble Uncovers the Farthest Star Ever Seen. Forget the Kepler space mission , a recent paper encourages more enthusiastic, if not radical, members to use their standard DLSR cameras to join in the search for exoplanets.
Guest speaker Robert Ince “Widefield and time-lapse astrophotography”
After answering to a professional career migrating from explosives to his lifetime interest in Astronomy, Robert Ince illustrated his personal revival of astrophotography with a camera only – without his 12″ telescope. Beginning with landscapes with star backgrounds and star trails, the talk progressed through driven exposures, including time-lapse video and panning sequences, to the use of filters. Robert described in detail his post-exposure processing using a wide range of software. A number of useful links were listed:
- Adobe Lightroom – free for a trial period
- Startrails – free, Microsoft only
- Sequator – free, Microsoft only