The New Season

As the nights get longer, we reveal what to see, where to go and what to buy this I autumn and winter With darker nights ahead and the winter constellations emerging into the pre-dawn skies, astronomers across the country are stirring from their summer hibernation. We're now entering that wonderful time of year when the dark nights return and our surveying of the skies can properly resume. After all, there's only so many times you can watch those Top Gear re-runs on TV. To prepare you for...

Steps

After test-fitting the parts we used epoxy resin glue to bond the sides and base together. Two clamps held them in place until the glue set. After fitting, some small adjustments to the washer positions were needed to get the action smooth and the tension correct. Our resident equipment specialist Steve Richards cures your optical ailments I'm using a Sky-Watcher Evostar 80ED with a 28mm eyepiece. It's line for deep-sky viewing, but how can I improve its performance on the planets and the Moon...

Martin Pugh

BEAVER LAKE, NEBRASKA, USA, FEBRUARY AND MARCH 2010 Martin says Open clusters are often overlooked os imaging targets for amateur astrophotographers. I knew the bright stars would saturate quickly, so with careful processing I restored the beautiful mix of yellow and blue stars. Equipment Takahashi FSQ-106 refractor ond an SBIG STX CCD camera We've teamed up with Astronomia to offer the winner of next v' A month's best Hotshots image a fantastic prize. They'll receive a fully multirooted...

Telescopes

Relractlng iDlcscopo Diameter 60mm (2.4) Focal length 700mm Red dot finderscope Eyepieces 10mm Plossl (1 25) Eyepieces 20 mm Plossl (1 25) Dual motor drive Computerised AZ mount Star Keeker software Refracting telescope Diameter 60 mm (3.14) Focal length 700mm Red dot finder scope Eyepieces 10mm Plossl (1 25) Eyepieces 25mm Plossl (t-25) 2k Barlow lens Dual motor drive Computerised AZ mount Star seeker software Pentaflex-114 AZ GoTo Reflecting telescope Diameter 60mm (3.14) Focal length 700mm...

Info

CHANDRA X-RAY OBSERVATORY, 24 MAY 2010 This image shows a 75 lighlyear-wide supernova remnant, known as N49, in the Large Magellanic Cloud. It was formed by the explosion of a massive star 160,000 lightyears away. Blue colours indicate the glow of X-rays from the cloud of gos. EUROPEAN SOUTHERN OBSERVATORY, 16 JUNE 2010 The Sculptor Galaxy (NGC 2531 sits roughly 13 million lightyears from Earth in the southern hemisphere constellation of Sculptor. This new image from ESO's Visible and Infrared...

Step By Step Guide

We chose 12mm plywood for the main body as it is easy to work with hand tools, and strong enough when cul to intricate shapes. Once it was accurately marked out, we used a coping saw for most of the cutting. An electric jigsaw Is an effective alternative, but holding the small parts while cutting requires care. When we drilled the holes in the two sides, we taped them together and drilled through both. This means that should you make a small error, it is repeated on both parts so the focus...

Software For The New Season

We've put together a fantastic collection of programs on our coverdisc this month to make your observing life easier As its name suggests, this is a computer-based clock that allows you to make accurate timings of astronomical phenomena such as eclipses, moon transits and occupations. Cartes du Ciel is a handy piece of planetarium software that allows you to plot the night sky from your location. It can also be used to control a telescope and print out star charts. The glare from a bright...

The Constellations

September's night sky is still dominated by the summer constellations, which are making their way westwards as the month goes on. To get your bearings, look out for the huge asterism known as the Summer Triangle (which is marked on our main chart on page 54). It's made up of the stars Vega (in the constellation Lyra), Deneb (in Cygnus) and Altair (in Aquila). September is also the time to get a last glimpse of the Milky Way region around Scutum before it starts to disappear into the sunset. As...

Fisher Space

The Sky at Night Magazine Bullet Space Pen Adopted by NASA for its astronaut programme, the Fisher Space Pen is designed to cope with the gravity-free vacuum and extreme temperatures found in space, from -20 C right up to 200 C. It'll also write underwater, on greasy surfaces and even upside down. Become a subscriber and you'll receive a special limited edition Sky at Night Magazine version of the Bullet pen engraved with 'Sky at Night'. NEVER MISS AN ISSUE - SUBSCRIBE TODAY This month's top...

01616539092

BSc & MSei degrees in Astrophysics, Particle Physics & Cosmology. Modules include Observational Cosmology, Life & Death of Stars, Dynamics & Evolution of Galaxies, Astroparticle Cosmology, Fxoplanets, Astrophysical Space Instrumentation, Solar Terrestrial Environment, Extreme Environments tk Early Universe. www.ph.bham.ac.uk prospective 0121414 4563 The UCL Certificate of Higher Education in Astronomy is taught one evening per week at UC1, with practical sessions at University of...

South

Richard Staples Thurrock AS, Horndon-on-the-Hill Methodist Hall 1 September at 7.30pm free for members, visitors 3 email roy. hookwayl btinternet.com www. thurrockastronomysociety.com Dr Carolin Crawford Loughton AS, Theydon Bois Scout Hall 2 September at 8pm visitors welcome call Jerry Workman on 020 8507 7568 www.las-astro.org.uk Dr John Mason Guildford AS, Lecture Theatre M, University of Surrey 9 September at 7.30pm free members, visitors 3 email secretary guildfordas.org > ASTRONOMY...

Jmu

M Exploring The Universe U Astronomy for Teaching 1 he Science of Science Hctipn Planetary Geology The Universe Through a Smai Telescope Galaxies Stars The Universe Thffi gflmLia e Telescope Planetary Atmospheres gsrnology Gamma Ray Bursts Exopla lefl B DlSl 231 2BOO Studentll lcnren nne nf our enquiryH3Stro.ljmu.ac.uk courses will have the opportunity to www.astro.ljmu.ac.uk distance SLJkmit their own observation requests to the Liverpool Telescope, the world's largest robotic telescope. (iwp...

Met Office

The Met Office site has a comprehensive range of tools including current and forecast conditions for general weather, cloud, rain, pressure, temperature, wind and the UV index, based on your postcode. There is an excellent bank of information plus INVENT, a test area showing the Met Office's latest plans for presenting the weather. a A home weother station can include an anemometer to read wind direction and speed bring pure, clean air towards the south, and worse in the summer because of...

Europa

The second Galilean moon out from Jupiter, Europa, should theoretically be* visible withjhe naked eye since it hines at magnitude +5.3. But Jupiter's overwhelming brightness makes it difficult to separate the moon from'the planet. Eucopa's brightness is due to its surface being smooth and icy. Scientists suspect that underneath is.a liquid water ocean, leaving open the possibility that life may lurk in the depths. The last of the four giant Galilean System, aft r Titan, the'biggest of cratered...

1

Bydgosic Berlin .Poznan * Lodz, .Shrtg-iffl Linz.Vie,,wV *Bro1ii< a 0 That clever bit lies in the innovative way LOFAR 'looks' at the sky. A conventional dish-shaped radio telescope is highly directional - it only sees a small portion of the sky aL a given Lime. The LOFAR antennae work on an entirely different principle using something called 'phased-array technology', z The individual antennae of the array pick up E radiation from all parts of the sky simultaneously. 1 It is the...

More Events

SCOTLAND St IRELAND TALK ASTRONOMY ON THE INTERNET Conan McDonnell Shannonside AS, Room 207, Mary Immaculate College, Limerick 1 September at 8pm www.shannonside astronomyclub.com Chris Stradling Moray's Astronomy Club, Birnie Village Hall 3 September at 7.30pm free for members, visitors welcome call 01466 771371 www.sigma-astro.co.uk Charlie Duke Glasgow Caledonian University 10 September at 7pm tickets 30, advanced booking recommended email info walkwith destiny.com www.walkwithdestiny.com...

South West

Herschel Museum of Astronomy, Bath throughout September, except Wednesdays, 1pm to 5pm adults 4.50, children 2.50 call 01225 446865 Dr David Whitehouse Wessex AS, Allendale Community Centre, Wimborne 7 September at 8pm free for members, visitors welcome email alan ajefferis. freeserve.co.uk www.wessex-astro.org.uk

Gear

Vincent Whiteman rounds up the latest astronomical accessories 1 Orion StarSeek WiFi Telescope Control Module Price 129 Supplier SCS Astro 01823 665510 www.scsastro.co.uk The Orion StarSeek module allows you to control your scope using your Phone or iPod Touch. It requires the Orion StarSeek mobile app ( 14.99, only from apple.com). 31A I Smarl(i uidci*2 Imaging Control System Price 419 Supplier David Hinds Ltd 01525 852696 www.celeslron.uk.com The second generation LVI guide camera has...

Astromeet

Milton Keynes AS, Rectory Cottages, Bletchley, Milton Keynes 3 September at 8pm, free for members, visitors welcome email John Bell on mbell lineone.net www.mtas.org.ui Anthony Southwell Derby & District AS, The Friends Meeting House, Derby, 3 September at 9.30pm free for members, visitors welcome email secretary derbyastronomy.org www.derbyastronomy.org Paul Money Redd Itch AS, St Augustine's RC High School, Hunt End 6 September free for members, visitors welcome email membership...

Ministry Of Defence

DEFENCE ENGINEERING AND SCIENCE GflOUP The UK requires modern, battle winning forces to defend its interests and to contribute to strengthening international peace and security. These forces increasingly depend on scientific and technological advances to maintain their ability to operate effectively this means the provision of technologies of tremendous speed, power and capacity to deliver a decisive operational edge. We are The Ministry of Defence, Defence Engineering and Science Group....

Astro Imaging

This month, I'm going to show you how to capture M27, the Dumbbell Nebula, which sits in the constellation ofVulpecula. We'll be using a mono-CCD camera with four different filters one each for luminance (L), (R), green (G) and blue (R) respectively. You can use filters separately in front of the camera or put them in a filter wheel to ease the task of swapping them over. The luminance, or brightness, information in an image is Important because it defines the detail perceived by the eye. The...

Sketching

MESSIER 39 IS a large, Moon-sized open cluster located nearly halfway between the stars Deneb and Alpha Lacertae. Charles Messier catalogued it in 1764 and is generally credited with its discovery, but there are also arguments that it was discovered by Guillaume Le Gentil in 1750. However, my vote goes to Aristotle. In 325 BC he said the cluster was a 'cometary appearing object', and his account closely matches descriptions given by modern amateurs of it appearing as a 'dim hazy patch'. M39 can...

Chris Lintott18

The intensely bright X-ray explosion as captured by the Swift probe (inset) A space observatory is blinded by a very bright and distant X-ray flash NASA'S SWIFT SPACE observatory was temporarily 'blinded' on 21 June by the brightest X-ray blast ever detected from beyond the Milky Way's neighbourhood. The X-ray flash accompanied a gamma-ray burst that probably signalled a massive star exploding to leave behind a black hole. Observations suggest the burst, named GRB 100621A, lay so far away that...

Double Stars And Clusters

There's going to be a bewildering array of double stars and star clusters to see over the coming months, so here are a few we think you should keep an eye out for. Let's start in September's night sky. Ataboul 10pm in September you II find the globular cluster M13 sitting in Hercules in the west. Locate it by scanning the northwest corner of the famous LKeystone asterism. A small telescope of around 6 inches will resolve many of the cluster's stars. Similarly, don't forget the globular cluster...