Another visit to Tivoli Southern Guest farm. This year I decided to go for the New Moon period of april/may coinciding with the maximum of the Eta Aquarid meteor shower.

My friend Hendrik joined me for a week and brought along his newly developed standalone guiding camera Staraid Revolution. This guide camera does not require a laptop or pc, but can be controlled via a smartphone or tablet. It starts up and calibrates in seconds, tracks up to twenty stars multiple times per second and is very accurate and foolproof. Besides guiding, this camera also contains a simple to use polar alignment procedure and does plate solving. Very impressed with this little camera!

I also got the opportunity to test and use a new ASA 10″ F=900mm Hypergraph with 3″ Wynne corrector. It came equipped with a Canon EF adapter, so I used my Canon 6D mark for a number of nights. The focuser is Ascom compliant but I used the simple focus program ASA provided, side-by-side with the live view utility of Canon. However, focus remained very stable during the night, even with a temperature drop of 10 degrees.

Below are some quick and dirty jpg stacks. Back home I will do some proper work on the raws and add more photo’s.

21-01-2019, Lunar Eclipse.

The lunar eclipse of January 21st, 2019, took place under chilly (-8°C/17°F) circumstances. A big difference with last year’s tropical (38°C/100°F) eclipse when over 500 visitors looked at the eclipse. Despite the cold and the early morning hours some 75 observers payed a visit to public observatory Bussloo to witness another nice eclipse.


La Palma, december 2018.

After my trip to La Palma last year, I decided to visit La Palma again coinciding with the perihelion passage (December 12) of comet 46P/Wirtanen. At closest approach to Earth at December 16, it would probably be visible with the naked eye. Of course this period is also known for the maximum of the Geminid meteor stream. We (my parents and I) experienced exceptionally good weather (sunny, 22°C) and we were able to observe comet Wirtanen every night as well as the Geminids.

2018-07-27, Eclipse of the moon.

On the very hot (38°C/100°F) summer evening of Friday 27 July, more than 500 visitors had gathered at public observatory Bussloo transforming the observatory into a festival site. Armed with drinks, chairs, telescopes and binoculars, the darkened moon became visible for the first time at 22.05 CET, more than half an hour after the rise of the moon.

With 1h 48m, this lunar eclipse was the longest in duration of the 21th century.

After a first presentation, I looked outside through the back door; there were already more than 100 visitors waiting in line for the next presentation.

Waiting for the moon to rise.

Waiting for the moon to rise.

Observers on top of the hill were the first to spot the moon rising through thin clouds.

2018-07-27, 21.02 UT, Moon & Mars. Canon 6D II, Sigma ART 135mm, F/1.8, 0.8sec, ISO1600.

2018-07-28, 21.14 UT. Canon 60D, William Optics FLT98, f=618mm, ISO400, 4sec.

2018-07-28, 21.23 UT.Canon 60D, William Optics FLT98, f=618mm, ISO400, 2sec.

2018-07-28, 21.47 UT. Canon 60D, William Optics FLT98, f=618mm, ISO400, 1sec.

2018-07-28, 22.23 UT. Canon 60D, William Optics FLT98, f=618mm, ISO400, 1/800sec.