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Home Forums Observing and Imaging Group Solar Observing at the ROG

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 39 total)
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  • #6884
    Andy Sawers
    Moderator
    Topics: 127
    Replies: 602

    Unfortunately, ‘Next day delivery’ for the replacement Zarkov Cloud Gun bullets was prohibitively expensive. They’re being delivered by camel within the next six months.

    #6888
    Mike Meynell
    Moderator
    Topics: 119
    Replies: 756

    Ah well… what can you do… as it turns out, it was a rotten decision to cancel 🙁

    In my defence, none of the weather forecasts at 8am this morning forecast a virtually cloudless afternoon. Typical! No doubt, had we gone ahead, the gods of astronomy would have ensured a major thunderstorm directly overhead in Greenwich Park. 😉

    Still, I had a good day… went for a walk with my youngest daughter around Greenwich, trying to find all of the “Books About Town” benches in the Greenwich area… and we found them all! From Captain Scott’s Autobiography to We’re Going on a Bear Hunt via The Time Machine and the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy… great fun.

    Books About Town

    • This reply was modified 5 years, 5 months ago by Mike Meynell.
    #6891
    Andy Sawers
    Moderator
    Topics: 127
    Replies: 602

    Mike, I was feeling your pain all afternoon – but all you can do is make the best decision possible on the basis of the available information – which you did!

    Looks like a great collection of ‘books’ around Greenwich. Don’t suppose Principia Mathematica or De Revolutionibus Orbium Coelestium were there? 😉

    #6892
    Mike Meynell
    Moderator
    Topics: 119
    Replies: 756

    Thanks Andy, it’s never easy when conditions are that marginal. In the back of my mind was the huge thunderstorm which came out of nothing on Thursday (not forecast) in very similar conditions to Saturday. I’ve learnt to just make a decision and stick to it… holding my hands up afterwards if I get it wrong, and keeping silently smug if I get it right 😉

    I’m afraid your wish for Newtonian or Copernican classics on the book benches has gone unfulfilled. However, that book you have but have never read, “A Brief History of Time“, is a bench in the City, just off of Cornhill!

    #6893
    Andy Sawers
    Moderator
    Topics: 127
    Replies: 602

    That is awesome (and I never use that word). I want that bench!

    #7057
    Andy Sawers
    Moderator
    Topics: 127
    Replies: 602

    The ‘All Quiet’ event
    Okay, sorry, clearly this is my fault. On the basis of the Flamsteed ‘Who’s bought new kit recently?’ mantra, I stick my hand up for having made a Blue Peter-esque solar filter for my ‘scope using Baader solar filter film, since when there have been virtually no sunspots. Sorry if this messes up the solar viewing events at ROG… 🙁

    #7062
    Mike Meynell
    Moderator
    Topics: 119
    Replies: 756

    Ah, that would explain a lot!

    Actually, a couple of sunspots have made a reappearance, though they are tiny in comparison to what we saw a couple of weeks ago. Doesn’t seem much point in looking at the Sun in white light at the moment, so we will concentrate on H-alpha. Despite the lack of sunspots, there are some nice prominences and filaments.

    Weather looks set fair this week, both for our “members” solar viewing tomorrow evening (Tuesday) and the public event all day on Wednesday. About time our luck changed!

    #7098
    Mike Meynell
    Moderator
    Topics: 119
    Replies: 756

    A very pleasant day of solar viewing today at the ROG. We were in constant battle with the clouds, once again, but still had plenty of clear patches. We’ve estimated that around 250 people looked through the solar telescope, which is a good number for a midweek viewing event on a partially cloudy day.

    Not much activity on the Sun once again. There seems to be a nice active region rotating into view, which will hopefully be more visible at our planned event on Saturday (weather permitting, of course!). Prominences not quite as spectacular as yesterday evening’s session, but still very nice to look at. Not much in the way of filaments… a relatively small number of these.

    Highlight of the day was a crowd of teachers who came early on in the day, who were on a course at Queen Mary College. They were good fun to chat to. Interesting that many of them had looked through a smaller solar telescope elsewhere yesterday, but thought that the view through the 90mm Coronado was significantly better, giving a much better view of surface details.

    Thanks to Christina, John and Tim for helping myself and Nick out today. Much appreciated and I hope you all enjoyed the event.

    #7101
    Mike Meynell
    Moderator
    Topics: 119
    Replies: 756

    Hmmm… well, the forecast for tomorrow (Saturday 26 July) is looking 50-50 at the moment. The MetOffice state: “Quite cloudy for much of the day, though still very warm with some brighter spells and hazy sun at times. One or two rain showers possible later.

    If that remains the case in the morning, we will probably have to cancel.

    We will try to make an early decision so that volunteers can re-plan their day if we need to cancel.

    #7103
    Brian Blake
    Participant
    Topics: 188
    Replies: 409

    It must be me. I am jinxed because every session I am booked on seems to be cancelled.

    #7104
    Mike Meynell
    Moderator
    Topics: 119
    Replies: 756

    It must be me

    It has been noted 😉

    The thing to do is to turn up unannounced… that way the weather gods don’t stand a chance.

    Nice thunderstorm brewing up to the north-east of London at the moment – have a look at http://www.lightningmaps.org/realtime?lang=en for a real-time update!

    #7111
    Mike Meynell
    Moderator
    Topics: 119
    Replies: 756

    We will go ahead with the public solar viewing session today at the ROG, though it is likely that the skies will cloud over in the early afternoon.

    Still, we hope that the skies will be clear enough to get a couple of hours of solar viewing in during the late morning and lunchtime, so think it’s worthwhile going ahead.

    Hope to see some of you later!

    #7114
    Mike Meynell
    Moderator
    Topics: 119
    Replies: 756

    Most unexpected, but we managed to run nearly a full day session at the ROG today… finally packing up just after 3pm.

    We estimate that around 450 people viewed the Sun through the 90mm Coronado, and they were rewarded with a very active looking solar surface. At least 7 or 8 prominences were visible, some very large. Only a single sunspot, but it was much bigger than on Wednesday, and relatively easy for the public to see.

    Some nice surface detail, with a very long filament visible towards the south and a few areas of plage.

    So, yet another successful solar viewing event. This is becoming a habit! Thanks to Christina (for the second session in a row), Roger and Tej for helping myself and Nick to run the session.

    #7115
    Christina Chester
    Participant
    Topics: 19
    Replies: 196

    A pleasure! And what good fun it was too! I’ve really, really, really missed doing stuff with the public! Still think we should introduce the sandwich board (mentioned in a previous Pathe thread) to entice visitors… Though this isn’t me nominating myself!

    Good to meet Tej for the first time too!

    #7116
    Tej
    Participant
    Topics: 39
    Replies: 597

    I had a thoroughly enjoyable day too!

    It was particularly great to see Colonel Mike being wrong all day, regularly returning from military style cloud surveillance missions every half hour, reporting:
    “well, looks like we got just half hour left before the clouds roll in” followed by…
    “ooh the sun just went in between the clouds, we’ll be ok for another half hour before it really rolls in” followed by…
    “here it comes..hold, hold…oh it dissipated!!”…a few sun filled hours later, the clouds finally did roll in 😉

    But I am just teasing, thanks Mike and Nick for arranging these sessions for the public viewing and inviting us to assist. It was, as Christina says, fun and a real pleasure to not only relay the solar knowledge to the public but to hear the occasional “Wow”s and even “oh my god” reactions as the Sun sure as heck put on a prominence filled show for everyone!

    Likewise, Christina, a delight to meet you and also Roger for the first time!

    After we dispersed, I also caught a couple of Planetarium shows as I hadnt attended any this year yet which capped off an enjoyable day at the Royal Observatory.

    Look forward to our next solar observing event.

    • This reply was modified 5 years, 4 months ago by Tej.
    • This reply was modified 5 years, 4 months ago by Tej.
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