Observing for Tonight April 30th is OFF

30 04 2016

There will be no observing at Terrey Hills tonight due to heavy cloud cover and possible rain. Lawrie Webb.

New Astronomer’s Group Starts Tuesday April 26

21 04 2016
Just a reminder that the first New Astronomer’s Group (NAG) session for 2016 starts this Tuesday April 26, at 7.30 pm.  We meet at Regis Hall – on Riverview Road opposite St. Ignatius Riverview’s main school campus.  A map can be found at the link below.


If you would like to attend and haven’t already registered, the registration form can be found here: Registration Form

We meet in a room just below the main hall.  So we can start on time, it would be great if you could start arriving at around 7:15 pm.

Weather permitting, the first session will include some observing time, with NSAS members providing a variety of scopes for you to look through for a short period.  There will be an opportunity to bring your own telescope later in the course if you have one, but for now you can look through those provided by the members.

All materials and some light refreshments are provided during the course.  The cost of the course is $30 for non-society members, which covers you for all 7 sessions, and can be paid on Tuesday.  Alternatively, if you would like to become a member of the society, you can download our membership form here: Join NSAS and bring it with you on the night.  Membership is $50, and the cost of the course is included in your membership.

All you need to bring is:

1. A pen and paper
2. A willingness to learn and ask questions
3. Some warm clothes, including a warm jacket and a beanie, as we are getting into the colder parts of the year, and will be spending about 1/2 an hour outside observing if weather permits.
4. If you have a pair of binoculars, feel free to bring them along!

General Meeting – Tuesday April 19

18 04 2016
Just a reminder that we have our general meeting this Tuesday the 19th, at 7:30pm, at our usual location in St Ignatius.  Our guest lecturer is Greg Priestly, a well-known astroimager (time-lapse nightscape photography), and his talk is titled “Astronomical Timelapse: My perspective”.   He will discuss what he does and how he does it, including planning, equipment, setup, execution, workflow and tools, processing, results, and success and tragedy.

Hope to see you there.

Observing Report for Saturday 9th April

12 04 2016

Although the turnout was the smallest to date, two members and one visitor attended, with two telescopes and a set of binoculars.
Various weather reports were predicting poor visibility, due to cloud cover. However, the NightSky Pro app on my i-phone was telling me the cloud cover would be fairly low from 8pm onwards. We decided to set up prior to sunset and take our chances. Ross and I used our Nexstar 5SE telescope and our large binoculars, and John set up his ED80 refractor for astrophotography.
After sunset, the cloud cover started to dissipate, which allowed clear areas of approximately 30-40% for the first hour or so. We had to keep moving the ‘scope into the clear areas, but were able to observe the Eta Carina and Orion nebulae, plus many star clusters, and John achieved his best shot, to date, of the Chicken nebula.
The clarity of the sky was excellent, with very little little pollution, and the moon (which set early in the evening) was terrific to view through the binoculars.
From about 8pm onwards we enjoyed around 80% visibility, and silently thanked NightSky Pro for the heads up. It goes to show just how difficult it is to predict what will happen at the Terrey Hills site and, although only a few of us attended, the night was a wonderful success.
The dew had well and truly set in by 9:30, so we called it a night and left around 10pm. Julie Evans.

Observing for Tonight April 9th is ON.

9 04 2016

Should you decide to attend it will be a short session, due to increasing cloud. It is predicted to be fairly clear from the onset of darkness, but could be as much as 70% cloud by 10pm. Ross will open the gate around sunset. If it doesn’t work out, I will make use of our standby night next Saturday (weather permitting).

Lawrie Webb.

NSAS Events for April 2016

6 04 2016
Here are the events that we have on this month.  I look forward to seeing you at one of them!


Night time observing is scheduled for Saturday the 9th.  We will be observing from our site in Terry Hills.

General Meeting

We have our general meeting on Tuesday the 19th.  Our guest lecturer is Greg Priestly, a well-known astroimager (time-lapse nightscape photography), and his talk is titled “Astronomical Timelapse: My perspective”.   He will discuss what he does and how he does it, including planning, equipment, setup, execution, workflow and tools, processing, results, and success and tragedy.

The New Astronomer’s Group

This month we start the New Astronomer’s Group (NAG) course for 2016.  If you’d like to attend, it is free for members, or $30 for non-members.  It will start at 7:30pm on April 26.  If you’d like to attend, please click on the link below and fill in the registration form so we can get an idea of numbers and cater accordingly.

New Astronomer’s Group Registration

More details about the course can be found here: https://nsas.org.au/nag/


We will be participating in the Maquarie University Astronomy Open Night again this year.  It will be held on May the 14th, from 6pm to 10pm.  If you can help out by bringing your scope or helping out at the booth (promoting NSAS) please let me know.


6 04 2016

The forecast for clear skies on the Saturday evening turned out to be spot on, with some alto stratus dissipating with the sunset.
A characteristic of the site is the stability of the air which combined with the low light pollution provides excellent viewing in a dark sky.
it was beautiful just to be able to view the star studded sky without the aid of telescopes or binoculars, remarkable considering how close we are located to the centre of Sydney.
A good role up with seventeen telescopes, seventeen members & five visitors. Five of the telescopes were devoted to astrophotography.
Jupiter was an early favourite with excellent definition. Later in the night the Great Red Spot became visible & Lawrie was delighted to be able to view this with his 5 inch Maksutov-Cassegrain. As the evening progressed Mars & Saturn came up over the horizon, although Mars being on a distant part of it’s orbit lacked definition. One could just roam the sky viewing globulars, open clusters, nebulae & galaxies. Overall, another very successful viewing night.

Ken Jones