Observing for Saturday 12 June is ON

Hi All, The weather for Saturday is looking good. We will be setting up at the New Viewing Site in the Carpark at the PFA.
The night is going to be VERY Cold so come prepared. I will open the gates at 4:30 to allow you to setup in daylight.
I look forward to see you all there. Phil Angilley Observing Officer NSAS 0448 120 179.

Arcadia Star Party is cancelled

Hi everyone, the committee has decided to cancel the star party originally planned for this weekend at Arcadia due to the poor weather.

Hopefully, free space in our calendar, as well as improved weather, will align and we will try to revisit the event towards the end of the year.
Greg McCall.

NSAS – New field first light, Members’ Star Parties, Adaptive Optics, a perfect Lunar Eclipse and how not to blow up your telescope !!!!

Hi everyone

We have had a busy month with the new NSAS Observation field getting it’s first light on the 15th May. It was a good night with about 20 telescopes breaking the soil so to speak. I managed to grab a nice shot of the sunset

and Greg McCall took this shot of NGC6727 and NGC6729 so clearly getting images of star fields is not going to be a problem!!

NGC6727 & NGC6729 – Greg McCall 2021

It was a good night with a few teething issues where we needed to manage an automated security light which kept on turning on but we are working with the PFA to resolve this.

A reminder that the Arcadia Star Party is on this weekend for members. At the moment the weather is looking a little “wiffy” and a call will be made on Tuesday night if we are to proceed. If you are still interested in coming along there are some open spots. Members only registration https://nsas.org.au/arcadia-star-party-application-page/. Kym Haines will be giving us a “A journey through the Milky Way and beyond” presentation at 5pm on Saturday and Ilya Genkin will be doing a guided discussion around lenses on Sunday morning.

We were also very lucky to have a Total Lunar eclipse on 26th May and hosted an event, supported by Northern Beaches Council at JJ Memorial Reserve. We had over 170 people, 30 telescopes and even the ABC broadcasted from the site which was an interesting development.

This month’s presentation at the General Meeting is on Adaptive Optics. Tony Travouillon from ANU will be leading us through this and his (and co-authors) recent article that was published in Scientific American. For details, please refer to the NSAS homepage where details are available to zoom into this event. The zoom meeting will also be presented into our room at Regis Hall so feel free to come along and have a chin wag after Tony’s talk.

and lastly I have learnt that the telescope I have does not have polarity protection in its circuitry! $750 later my telescope works again. I’ll spare you the photos but the plume of smoke when I fried the board and handset was quite depressing!

Clear skies
David Stevenson
Club President

May 2021 Monthly Showcase

Hi everyone,

There are still a few days left to submit your entries to the May 2021 Monthly Showcase. Remember, the entries can be photos, videos, drawings, articles, anything astronomy related.

Please send your entries to me at bpetschel@gmail.com. Please ensure that all images have a maximum size of 1200 pixels on the longest side and are in JPG format. Also let me know whether or not you are ok with it being published on Facebook under your name.

Past entries can be viewed at https://www.facebook.com/NorthernSydneyAstro and at https://nsas.org.au/astrophotography/monthly-showcase/.

Cheers,
Ben

NSAS – Total Lunar Eclipse this Wednesday


Hi everyone.

A reminder that there is a Total Lunar eclipse this Wednesday and we will be opening up Terrey Hills (JJ Melbourne Memorial Park) at 7PM (gates open at 6:30pm). Please feel free to bring family and friends and your own scopes to come and have a look. This will be a prime viewing point in Sydney and at the moment the weather is looking good.

Make sure you rug up – IT WILL BE COLD!! Consider a thermos of tea, blankets, scarves, beanies, jackets…no open shoes. Bring along your binoculars if you have them.

We will be hosting some cubs and scouts in an allocated area so please set up away from that area.

Please observe the following rules for everyone’s safety that are in place for the night.
1. If you are bringing in a telescope you may bring your car into the park but be aware that there will be kids running around and on bikes.
2. As everyone will be looking to the east, put your car on the right hand side of the road
3. If you don’t have a telescope you must park outside and walk in.
4. You must register yourself and your party at the COVID check in desk at the front gate. BRING YOUR PHONE TO DO THIS.
5. Bring some alcohol wipes to wipe down your eyepieces after each person looks through it. Not detergent based ones,

For those volunteers who have offered to bring along your scopes a big thank you.

Similarly, for those helping out at the council event at the beach headland a big thank you to you as well. Please be aware that the council is moving this location and this is still being finalised.

David Stevenson

Beginners Night in the Field for Saturday 22 May is ON

Hi All, The weather for Saturday is looking good, therefore the night is ON.
We will be there about 4:30PM, to allow you to start setting up in daylight.
It is going to be a cold night, so bring several layers of clothing to keep warm.
Phil Angilley, Observing Officer NSAS, 0448 120 178, pangilley@bigpond.com

NSAS – Arcadia Star Party Applications now available and will be open till 7pm Saturday

Hi there members.

The application form for the Arcadia Star Party is now available at the bottom of this email.

I suggest you read the stuff in the middle 🙂

We are now calling for people to indicate their interest in both nights of our mini camping star party. Numbers are limited so applications will only be open till 7pm this Saturday and in the event of oversubscription a names-in-a-hat process will be done.

Arcadia is about an hour away from the centre of Sydney. This is an opportunity to view or image in a darker part of Sydney for two nights, enjoy some social activities and participate in some talks and hopefully solar viewing during the day.

We are targeting Friday the 11th and Saturday the 12th of June. This a low key, stay all night for two nights event. As it is a two-night event, priority will be given to those who can stay both nights.

Please be aware of the conditions for the possible postponement of the star party:
•If due to recent rain, the ground will be too wet
•Clouds predicted for the weekend.
•Last-minute unforeseen circumstance arising with the property.

We have some contingency dates for the following months if the event is postponed as well as another Star Party in Coonabarabran in September.

Now, what do I mean by camping?

Staying all night takes the pressure off racing home and taking the time to get those images or see those objects. To be out under the stars or to sit out next to your gear all night if needed without any timetables, perhaps sleep in your car, a tent or even an RV etc. some of the time.

You must be self-sufficient. Any camping trailer, car, RV etc must be capable of driving in a grass paddock. We will also be able to accommodate a few people who wish to stay at local accommodation.

Any camping trailers must be of an off-road type and you should be capable of reversing your vehicle or trailer between trees and be prepared for sloping ground. Cars towing these trailers should also be capable of 4WD.

Also, be away that it’s in a field in the middle of winter so warm clothes etc. are essential. It is much colder out in the night air after midnight so thermals, gloves, etc. are recommended.

All rubbish must be taken with you. You must supply your own power for the equipment and it would be best to be able to have enough power for the weekend or be able to charge your own batteries with solar. Limited power is available to charge batteries, but we cannot guarantee that enough power points will be available when needed.

A single toilet is available and possibly a shower hopefully also available.

We can only drive on some parts of the property to avoid the cars compacting the ground which is not good for the soil. As such, we will need to keep cars at the campsite and away from the observation site. Think about how to move your gear to a site. A trolley etc. to transport gear from your camp to the observation site will be available if required.

As well as being self-sufficient, I recommend a groundsheet and a cover for your gear during the day. An elastic cord helps in securing the cover during the day. Something to put under tripod legs is also recommended for soft ground.

For those all-night imagers, now is the time to figure out and test any remote access to your gear from your tent/car etc.

Please ensure you have a red headlamp for working on your gear at night and a red-light touch for walking around the area. (white light torches to be covered with red film).

We are also possibly having some form of BBQ on Friday and Saturday night so it is a great opportunity to leave your gear for a little while and enjoy the social side of our star party.

If there is anybody who would like to volunteer to talk about any astronomy-related topic on Saturday, please let us know via the application form.

Greg McCall

Arcadia Star Party Application Form

Lunar Eclipse 26 May, Telescopes needed

Hi All,
NSAS is holding 2 Lunar Eclipse viewing nights for public access.
NSAS Members and Visitors are welcome.

The first is at the UNSP at Palm Beach, where we have 3 telescopes so far, and I need 3 more.
The second is at the Old Observing site at Terrey Hills, where I have 2 telescopes so far, and I need 3 more.
These events will start at 7PM at each location, so you will need to be there is sufficient time to setup.
Phil Angilley, Observing Officer NSAS, 0448 120 178, pangilley@bigpond.com