We were treated to a fine total lunar eclipse.
The photo of the eclipse was taken by J. O'Neill, at 02.21 UT, with a 106 mm refractor at f/8. This was 10 min after the start of totality.
The next total lunar eclipse visible from Ireland occurs in July 2018.
Members please report any observations, drawings or photographs to our Director of Observations, Liam Smyth for inclusion in the next issue of Orbit.
28 Sep 2015: The Oct-Dec 2015 issue Orbit has been printed and members should receive it soon.
by Dr Rebeca Garcia Lopez (DIAS)
Monday October 19th 2015 (8 pm).
Venue: Ely House, 8 Ely Place, Dublin 2. Time: 8 pm. All welcome, free event.
The quest for understanding the origin of our Solar System is a major research topic in astrophysics and its progress is closely related with the development of new telescopes/instruments. Stars form in the cold environment of molecular clouds, shielded from the disruptive ionising stellar radiation by dust. The same dust hides the young stars from us. Therefore, the star and planet formation processes have to be probed through wavelengths that allow us to "see" through the dust. In this talk, I will discuss what is the current status of our research on star formation, and how new facilities such as ALMA and the VLT-interferometer can help us to probe the origin of our Solar system.
Membership renewals are due from the 1st August 2015. Please note that the rates have increased this year. This is the first increase in many years and is needed to cover increased postage costs and rental fees for the hall for our lectures.
The Society is saddened to learn of the passing of Dr Ian Elliott, which occurred on 10th May 2015.
He spent some time at Sacramento Peak Observatory, New Mexico after qualifying as a solar physicist. He was also part of the group site-testing for the solar telescope at La Palma and then was on the Dunsink Observatory staff until 2001, finishing his tenure as Assistant Professor. Ian was co-founder and first Chairman of the Irish Science Centre Awareness Network (ISCAN) and also served as Chair of the Science and Technology Committee of the Royal Dublin Society for some time. He had a deep interest in promoting science and acted as the Irish point of contact for a number of competitions run by the European Space Agency and European Southern Observatory. Ian wrote many articles on the history of Irish astronomy and science, and also had a long-standing interest in the Sun's influence on the Earth's climate. (based on information provided by J.Flannery).
Dr Elliott was also a good friend to the IAS and gave many talks to the Society and wrote a number of articles for Orbit. Our sincere condolences to his wife Dorothy and his family.
P.S. There is a article on Dr Elliott in the July-Sep. 2015 issue (page 8) of Orbit.
In late May, the comet passes about 1° from the pole star Polaris. Remarkably, it is still visible (as of 23 May) in binoculars, at just below mag 8. It is an excellent time to image the comet with a fixed camera, as trailing would be slight.
The photo (below) of the comet is by John O'Neill and was taken on 9-10 January 2015 (cropped; 200 mm camera lens). The drawing of 19 January 2015 is by Deirdre Kelleghan, with details appended.
Please report any observations, drawings or photographs to our Director of Observations, Liam Smyth.
Photo of the Very Large Telecope in Chile, courtesy of E.S.O.
2015 Oct 19 Talk in Ely House (by Dr Rebeca Garcia Lopez)
2015 Oct 23 Dublin Sidewalk Astronomy at Sandymount.
2015 Oct 24 Dublin Sidewalk Astronomy at Clontarf
Please see EVENTS for more details and further events.
If you would like to attend Dunsink Observatory Public Open Nights that are supported by the IAS, you can find more details at Dunsink Observatory. These recommence in October 2015.
Malahide Community College is starting an astronomy course.