Archive

Archive for the ‘GTAS Outreach Event’ Category

04/16/2021 – Ephemeris – Virtual Star Party for the Sleeping Bear Dunes tonight

April 16, 2021 Leave a comment

This is Bob Moler with Ephemeris for Friday, April 16th. Today the Sun will be up for 13 hours and 33 minutes, setting at 8:29, and it will rise tomorrow at 6:54. The Moon, 4 days before first quarter, will set at 1:15 tomorrow morning.

Tonight the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore and the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society will hold an online star party this evening starting around 9 pm via the Zoom app available for Android smartphones, iPhones and computers. Instructions for joining are on the society’s website http://www.gtastro.org or the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore Facebook page. Images will be captured live, if it’s clear, from Northwestern Michigan College’s Joseph H Rogers Observatory. The images will be pretty much what is seen at the telescope eyepiece, and definitely not Hubble Space Telescope quality, which take days to process. Visible will be the crescent Moon. Then we move out beyond the solar system into our galaxy for star clusters and beyond our galaxy into the distant galaxies of spring skies.

The astronomical event times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

The Moon tonight. We’ll be looking at the Moon’s dark lava seas and other craters near the sunrise terminator.

We will be looking also at a few star clusters and out the thin side of our Milky Way Galaxy to lots of other galaxies.

04/02/2021 – Ephemeris – Tonight: Free zoom based astronomy meeting and possible star party if clear

April 2, 2021 Comments off

This is Bob Moler with Ephemeris for Good Friday, April 2nd. Today the Sun will be up for 12 hours and 50 minutes, setting at 8:12, and it will rise tomorrow at 7:19. The Moon, 2 days before last quarter, will rise at 2:42 tomorrow morning.

The Grand Traverse Astronomical Society hold a virtual meeting and program at 8 pm tonight via Zoom. For the program member Dan Dall’Olmo will present A Deep Look at Orion. April is our last chance to enjoy this most wonderful constellation until August mornings. The virtual star party will start around 9 pm, hosted by Dr. Jerry Dobek, astronomy professor at Northwestern Michigan College, but only if it’s clear in Traverse City. It will feature our last look at the Great Orion Nebula, and the first globular cluster of spring, M3, and a host of galaxies. Instructions to join and a link can be found on the society’s website www.gtastro.org.

The astronomical event times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Orion as shown in the evening
Orion, with some of its deep sky objects, in the southwest tonight April 2, 2021 at 9:30 pm. Created using Stellarium.
<p value="<amp-fit-text layout="fixed-height" min-font-size="6" max-font-size="72" height="80">

03/05/2021 – Ephemeris – Virtual Star Party Tonight!

March 5, 2021 Comments off

This is Ephemeris for Friday, March 5th. Today the Sun will be up for 11 hours and 23 minutes, setting at 6:36, and it will rise tomorrow at 7:11. The Moon, at last quarter today, will rise at 2:41 tomorrow morning.

The Grand Traverse Astronomical Society will host a virtual star party at 8 pm tonight. It is via the Zoom app for smartphones, tablets or computers. It will be hosted by Dr. Jerry Dobek, astronomy professor at Northwestern Michigan College. During a virtual star party the images are produced real time or near real time using a telescope mounted digital camera. That is if it’s clear. If cloudy we’ll have a virtual, virtual star party using recently acquired images captured for his astronomy classes. In January, we got a tantalizing look at the Great Orion Nebula. We’ll explore more of these wonders. It should be spectacular! Instructions to join and a link can be found on the society’s website gtastro.org.

The astronomical event times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

01/08/2021 – Ephemeris – There will be a virtual star party tonight

January 8, 2021 Comments off

This is Ephemeris for Friday, January 8th. Today the Sun will be up for 9 hours and 1 minute, setting at 5:20, and it will rise tomorrow at 8:19. The Moon, 2 days past last quarter, will rise at 4:31 tomorrow morning.

The Grand Traverse Astronomical Society will host a virtual star party at 8 pm tonight. It is via the Zoom app for smartphones, tablets or computers. Instructions and a link can be found on the society’s website gtastro.org. It will be hosted by Dr. Jerry Dobek, astronomy professor at Northwestern Michigan College. During a virtual star party the images are produced real time or near real time using a telescope mounted CCD camera. That is if it’s clear. If cloudy we’ll have a virtual, virtual star party using recently acquired images captured for his astronomy students. A couple of months ago we got a tantalizing look at the Great Orion Nebula as it rose in moonlight. Now it’s higher in the sky with no Moon. It should be spectacular!

The event times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

12/04/2020 – Ephemeris Interuptus part 2 – We are on! (Update)

December 4, 2020 Comments off

It’s hell to wake up in a hospital on your 79th birthday when you are feeling fine. I’m still being poked and prodded. I’m pretty sure that Wednesday’s problem was the Ghost of Stroke Past. Getting out of here today in time is the goal now. I’m sincerely sorry if anyone will be disappointed if I can’t give the talk.

Follow yesterday’s instructions to connect if I can get them up.

Thanks, and keep looking up!

Update 12/04/2020 2:19 pm

I have been released from the hospital.  We are back on for the “In Search of the Star of Bethlehem”. Go to http://www.gtastro.org before 8 pm to join the meeting. Note the society will be holding a board meeting from 7 p.m. before the main meeting. Anyone is invited to listen in if they want. We have no state secrets.

12/03/2020 – Ephemeris Interruptus – I’m in the hospital for tests

December 3, 2020 1 comment

Yesterday I developed some symptoms of the stroke I had last January and my daughter took me to the ER where I had a CT scan. I’m waiting on a early am MRI. I should be home later today. I hope to be finishing up my Zoom program In Search of the Star of Bethlehem. If you’re interested go to http://www.gtastro.org Friday. The program will start ar 8 pm EST, though you can join earlier with the GTAS business meeting in progress. I might get the 12/03 post up later in the day.

The audio Ephemeris programs will run on Interlochen Public Radio through Monday regardless of my health issues. They’re already in the can, so to speak.

11/06/2020 – Ephemeris – Virtual Star Party or a presentation on the Great Andromeda Galaxy tonight!

November 6, 2020 Comments off

This is Ephemeris for Friday, November 6th. Today the Sun will be up for 9 hours and 55 minutes, setting at 5:24, and it will rise tomorrow at 7:29. The Moon, 2 days before last quarter, will rise at 9:54 this evening.

The Grand Traverse Astronomical Society will host a virtual presentation or a virtual star party at 8 pm tonight. It is via the Zoom app for the smart phone, tablet or computer at zoom.us. Instructions and a link can be found on the society’s website gtastro.org. I will be giving the illustrated presentation on the Great Andromeda Galaxy if the night turns out to be cloudy. If clear Dr. Jerry Dobek, astronomy professor at Northwestern Michigan College will be hosting the star party. During a virtual star party the images are produced real time using a telescope mounted CCD camera. The planets Jupiter, Saturn and Mars are in the evening sky along with the Great Andromeda Galaxy and other wonders of the heavens.

10/16/2020 – Ephemeris – There’s an online star party tonight if it’s clear

October 16, 2020 Comments off

This is Bob Moler with Ephemeris for Friday, October 16th. Today the Sun will be up for 10 hours and 55 minutes, setting at 6:55, and it will rise tomorrow at 8:01. The Moon is new today, and won’t be visible.

Tonight the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore and the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society may hold the another of the park’s 50th anniversary online star parties this evening starting around 8 pm via the Zoom app available for Android smart phones, iPhones and computers. Instructions for joining are on the society’s web site gtastro.org and the Sleeping Bear Dunes Facebook page. The images will be captured live from Northwestern Michigan College’s Rogers Observatory south of Traverse City. If it is cloudy, the event will be rescheduled for Saturday night at 8 pm. Another backup night will be Friday the 23rd. The images will be pretty much what is visible at the telescope eyepiece, and definitely not Hubble Space Telescope quality.

gtastro.org will announce cancellations and alternate plans as soon as the decision to cancel is made.

The event times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Nights of star parties past

These pictures were taken before the star parties actually began and most of the crowds showed up, when there was enough light for photography. We don’t take flash pictures during the events.

Sleeping Bear Dunes 40th anniversary cake lighting

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore’s 40th anniversary cake lighting at the Stop 3, Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive (Dunes Overlook) October 21, 2010. This was the GTAS’ second star party with the park in the society’s now a bit over 10 year collaboration with the park. Credit: Eileen Carlisle.

Star party 2

Star Party at the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Thoreson Farm August 2013. Credit Eileen Carlisle.

Preparing to start the star party

Preparing to start the May star party at the Dune Climb. A few of the telescopes are visible including the GTAS 25″ “Emmettron” telescope at the far right. Credit: Eileen Carlisle.

Star Party

Star Party at the Dunes Overlook. Credit: Eileen Carlisle. We’ve since had to abandon hosting star parties here. A victim of our success, due to a lack of enough parking here and at Picnic Mountain next door.

SBDNL

A Star Party at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore’s Platte River Point. Credit: Eileen Carlisle

 

10/09/2020 – Ephemeris – There’s a virtual star party tonight via Zoom

October 9, 2020 Comments off

This is Ephemeris for Friday, October 9th. Today the Sun will be up for 11 hours and 16 minutes, setting at 7:07, and it will rise tomorrow at 7:52. The Moon, at last quarter today, will rise at 12:03 tomorrow morning.

The Grand Traverse Astronomical Society will host a virtual star party at 8 pm tonight. It is via the Zoom app for the smart phone, tablet or computer at zoom (dot) us. Instructions and a link can be found on the society’s website gtastro.org. It will be hosted by Dr. Jerry Dobek, astronomy professor at Northwestern Michigan College with commentary by yours truly and other society members. During a virtual star party the images are produced real time or near real time using a telescope mounted CCD camera. That is if it’s clear. Featured celestial objects will be Jupiter, Saturn, and Mars at its closest. Images of dimmer objects like star clusters or nebulae, what we call DSOs or deep sky objects may take exposures of several seconds or minutes to build up an image. But have the advantage of being in color. If cloudy we’ll have a virtual, virtual star party using recently acquired images. Dr. Dobek has used for his classes.

The event times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

09/25/2020 – Ephemeris – The Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore Virtual Star Party is tonight

September 25, 2020 Comments off

This is Ephemeris for Friday, September 25th. Today the Sun will be up for 11 hours and 59 minutes, setting at 7:33, and it will rise tomorrow at 7:35. The Moon, 2 days past first quarter, will set at 1:51 tomorrow morning.

Tonight the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore and the Grand Traverse Astronomical Society may hold the park’s 50th anniversary online star party this evening starting around 8 pm via the Zoom app available for Android smart phones, iPhones and computers. Instructions for joining are on the society’s web site gtastro.org and the Sleeping Bear Dunes Facebook page. Images will be captured live, if it’s clear, from Northwestern Michigan College’s Joseph H Rogers Observatory. The images will be pretty much what is seen at the telescope eyepiece, and definitely not Hubble Space Telescope quality, which take days to process. Visible will be the Moon, Jupiter, Saturn and later on Mars plus some really neat objects beyond the solar system. it all begins at 9 pm.

The event times given are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan. They may be different for your location.

Addendum

Saturn by Jerry Dobek

Preview of Saturn imaged by Professor Jerry Dobek at Northwestern Michigan College’s Joseph H. Rogers Observatory.

Mars by Jerry Dobek

Preview of Mars imaged by Professor Jerry Dobek at Northwestern Michigan College’s Joseph H. Rogers Observatory. Notice at top the small whitish patch, it a polar cap at the south pole of Mars. There are also some darker patches on the upper half of the image.