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Everything posted by PortableAstronomer

  1. Artificially keeping the earth spin at a constant rate by use of hypothetical rocket devices could indeed spare the need for such leap seconds, but it would not not prevent the moon from drifting away from the earth in terms of distance. If we could move the moon closer to the earth so that the moon's orbital period is equal to the earth's rotational period, and have the moon at geostationary position above, say, the mid-pacific ocean , then a] the earth would not slow down in rotation as much ( ok there are other factors other than lunar tidal friction, but they're relatively minor, such as S
  2. It will help, but often the storm cells are isolated and only cover a small area a few km/miles wide, and not as effective as a cold front passing over. This page might explain the effects on astronomical seeing conditions ... http://rosecityastronomers.org/resources/see_general.htm By the way .. thunderstorm is one word.
  3. Yep, same here in the Netherlands too (I am latitude 52N). It seems the "Summer" months are just cloud, warm rain, and hardly any darkness. The occasional break in clouds always coincides with a full-moon. We tend to get warm sunny April followed by rain / low pressure systems, then October we have nice sunny weather again. Definitely looking forward to Autumn. By the way, only 25 weeks to go until the shortest day of the year ; then the days will start getting lighter again.
  4. hmmm, not sure we'll be as advanced as many of you make out. After all, back in the 20th Century, passengers could fly from New York to London in about 3 hours. With fuel costs spiralling upwards, and less and less people affording the luxury of their own back yard, and continued public apathy to anything that's not on TV, as well as councils being able to turn nightness into daytime using even more power-efficient lighting. I do wonder if there will be any astronomy interest in 100 years or so. I hope I'm wrong.
  5. Well done TractionMan. The wisps of cloud in your pictures seem to enhance the pictures in a way, it kind of brings it into reality. I was clouded out over here.
  6. I guess you mean the forecasted weather *where you live* looks rubbish. Thanks for the link, I'll definately be following that. Cheers, Chris
  7. Yes, looks smart, as David mentioned. Me likey.
  8. hmm, sounds a bit like me, and a few other good people on here. Maybe I'm Neurotypical after-all, but we can still be very rational-thinking, so I guess that would make us a 'neurorational-neurotypical'. hmm, I like the sound of that. On the other hand, you don't have to have aspergers to use stuff like, say Pixinsight (like I do), but I think it helps. Cheers everyone, and Clear skies
  9. I've decided to go ahead and do the mod on my EQ6. Just received the parts, but during the manufacturing of the 12T pulleys, the holes were not centered. I received wobbly pulleys from the factory. Hopefully it was just a one-off, and that others on here recieve good parts. I am going to see if I can send it back and get it exchanged. Annoying because I have it post it back from Netherlands to UK. I'll let you know how my mod goes when I've finished. By the way, did anyone use a reamer to get the bore diameter to fit snugly on the shaft, or did most of you just use a standard drill bit on a l
  10. Well, it was this old post with a OSC that convinced me that I must get one of those (at the time)... http://stargazerslounge.com/showthread.php?t=79020 I've since tried Atik 314L mono (lovely camera) and also borrowed an 8300 mono once (which was a disappointment in terms of sensitivity), but I still use the QHY8 OSC most.
  11. Two Hydrogen atoms walking along. 1st atom says, "I've lost an electron!" 2nd atom responds,"are you sure?" 1st atom says, "yes... I'm positive!"
  12. Oh yes, thanks for posting that. Made my day.
  13. Well put Geoff. I was reading through all the replies on this thread and I was thinking to myself "yes... yes... yes, been there, worn the T-shirt , and Oh My Goodness yes, that too". Through my club experiences I've met some very intelligent, witty, fun, interesting people. However the leadership, direction and strategy of some clubs are very, let's say "20th Century". It's interesting to note the rise in popularity of informal observing groups, using the internet and smartphones for coordination. Definitely found myself a home at SGL ; so welcoming, and so refreshingly devoid of the "follow
  14. With the exception of dobsonians, I would imagine that now most scopes are sold for the imager in mind ; and portability too.
  15. Always nice to see proposals like this ; I just hope they last for some time. Pity about the comments that come back on the news articles though.
  16. Sara, when those engineers have finished, could you send them up to the Netherlands please! Ah well, good result there anyway. Hope you notice the difference through your scope.
  17. I heard on another thread on SGL someone who had reasonably dark skies in their village. He said, "amazingly, car drivers notice when it gets dark and they put on headlights so they can see where they are going."
  18. hmm, that's if there will still be an astro community in 20-30 years time. It could be more popular, it might be extinct. I hope for the former. With the fuel prices continually escalating upwards, I wonder what else can be used as propellant to put objects into orbit in the future. The concept of a "personal space imaging scope" is a scary prospect. Already I've been put off in the past by one astro society chairman giving lectures about his exclusive access to La Palma and the photo's he's taken with top-end astro kit and the "you should do it my way" attitude while snootily looking down on
  19. "No knowledge of the night sky required" - Yes I agree it can't have been written by anyone with an intereset in astronomy. Well, that as well, but I think the advert is more geared to newbies who maybe do want to learn the night sky but would like to feel like they have something that can get them somewhere faster. As for the GOTO vs non-GOTO argument, lots of views there and I know this has been bashed around on other threads, but I may as well add my ten cents: Telescope manufacturers know that the market requirements are going towards more portable setups. The uniquitious assumption (sadl
  20. Some nice tips about back yard astronomy with LP in this rather old article, but still a nice read.. part 1 http://www.oneminuteastronomer.com/769/urban-observers-survival-guide-part-1/ part 2 http://www.oneminuteastronomer.com/806/urban-observers-survival-guide-part-2/ part 3 http://www.oneminuteastronomer.com/837/urban-observers-survival-guide-part-3/
  21. Thanks Keith. That seems a lot more believably-priced. So for about 1600euro or £1200-1300 you can get the complete system. Hmmm. Might have to wait another year for me, but still an interesting concept. Knowing the world of specialist astro products though, they'll probably be discontinued soon, like the spc900 webcam was, and be seen on future Fleabay listings for 2x new price.
  22. I found this in a nearby shop for 249 euros. http://www.bresser-online.nl/Webwinkel-Product-5130025/TDM%E2%84%A2-Adapterset-EQ6-(new-version)-Montering.html ok that page was in Dutch (for the picture), but the description of it in English here... http://www.astroshop.eu/miscellaneous/explore-scientific-tdm-adapter-for-eq6--new-version-/p,15836 My question is, how easy is it to fit to the EQ6 mount? Do you need to buy anything else, or do you just need some screwdrivers & other basic toolbox stuff? I must say I am very tempted.
  23. Hi Glen, I think it's a deep-seated want in only a small proportion of the population who give a monkey's where we are in the universe. Hence my earlier comment about most people's imagination only extending up to 2 metres above ground. I hope I am wrong there. One glimpse at the regular newspapers, and the regular horoscope sections, reminds us that Astrology is far more captivating to Joe Bloggs than Astronomy can be. In other words, belief in fantasy is far more popular than belief in reality ; even if the reality were more exotic than the fantasy. The problem is that understanding of the
  24. With the exception of a couple of very welcome "Brian Cox effect" joiners, it seems most of us have been astro-curious since childhood. I sense there is a gap that starts from early teenage right through to late 30's or early 40's where there are much more pressing things to worry about. No surprises there of course. ( mind you, that didn't stop me bringing my 10" newtonian to University dorm room in the early 90's).
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