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.

2017-08-12/13 Perseids

Although the weather looked bad, meteorologists predicted clear spells during the Perseid maximum night 12/13 august. We gathered at public observatory Bussloo at 22.00 preparing for a very humid night waiting for the skies to clear. Around 22.45 most camera’s started imaging a partly cloudy sky. The first meteors were seen. At midnight most of the clouds had disappeared but instead the moon started to rise and illuminate the skies. Between 01.30 and 02.30 we were completely clouded out, but then the clouds finally gave way and we were able to continu well into dawn. Highlight of the night was a -6 Perseid fireball right in my field of view with a persisting train that was visible in binoculars for over 1 minute.

 

2016-05-09, Mercury transit.

Observed the Mercury transit from Public Observatory Bussloo together with volunteers and visitors. Even though the wind was strong from time to time with a less than mediocre seeing, we enjoyed the transit. After a couple of hours, clouds started to hamper observations more and more but after a dinner break, the skies cleared again and we were given a last look at the Sun and Mercury.

20160115, C/2013 US10 (Catalina)

Minutes after parking the telescope and closing down the observatory, the skies cleared. Quickly opened up the observatory again, piggybacked the Canon 60D and 200mm on the mount and took some 1 minute shots. Comet C/2013 US10 (Catalina) was easily visible in 8.5×42 binoculars.

20160115, 2232UT, Canon EOS 60D, Canon EF200/28.L at F/3.2, 8x1ms, ISO800.

20160115, 2232UT, Comet C/2013 US10 (Catalina), Canon EOS 60D, Canon EF200/28.L at F/3.2, 8x1ms, ISO800.