Saturday, March 4, 2017

Quick Post: Watch A Star Disappear Tonight!

Tonight (Saturday) observers in the lower United States will witness an occultation of the bright star Aldebaran by the first-quarter Moon. A word of explanation; the Moon will appear to pass between Earth and the star--in effect a "stellar" eclipse. This is an impressive--and surprisingly tense--event to watch with binoculars or telescope; through the eyepiece we will watch as Aldebaran seems to crawl toward the dark limb of the Moon, hang on the brink for what can seem like long minutes--and then blink out suddenly as if a switch had been flipped! About forty minutes later the star will reappear on the bright limb as our Moon continues along its orbit.

Fun and easy to watch, occultations of bright stars are definitely worth staying up for--so watch a distant star vanish tonight, and report your observations and impressions below. Enjoy!

For more information on tonight's occultation...

Friday, March 3, 2017

BBAA's "Cornwatch" Star Party, 24 Feb 2017

Enjoying the skies...Photo by Melvin Spruill, Jr.
It was a good session; the skies were quite clear and steady. Melvin Spruill Jr. was doing his fantastic photographic thing and provides this image of the sky and site. I'm the fella on the left with the hoodie and Newtonian scope!