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Last update June 28, 2017

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The BOEC was declared Canada's 15th Dark Sky Preserve in Nov, 2012. At the ES Fox Observatory, we have a large reflecting telescope (a 28-inch Webster, currently under repair) and a 10-inch SCT on a GOTO mount that we use regularly in our public viewing sessions.


Click for maps to: ES Fox Observatory or Tom Thomson Art Gallery meeting locations.



Webster is BACK!
Re-aluminized mirror performing well!

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Image by John H. above was taken on the Dark of the Moon viewing night June 24, 2017 and shows the Webster-28 in the foreground with Saturn lined up in the focuser. Note that Saturn is presently "riding" the Dark Horse of the Milky Way. This was the first night after the mirror had been re-aluminized and the four BAS members viewing noted the views (when seeing steadied) were pretty good for most objects although periodically clouds got in the way. Many objects besides Saturn and Jupiter were viewed and all were pronounced as good if not better than average once seeing steadied down. The next night for Webster viewing is the Aug 12 Dark Moon viewing night, but before then, there may well be some Moon and planet viewing when clear night opportunities arise. Check with John H. or Brett T. for impromptu viewing.
Canon 6D image, 20 seconds, f/4, 32 mm focal length, ISO 4000. A bit of levels enhancement in PS.



Next Fox Observatory Dark-of-the-Moon viewing night is Aug 12, weather permitting. See BAS Calendar of Events below for more info. The public is welcome!




Next BAS club meeting is July 5, 2017 (7 pm) at ES Fox Observatory.

For a review of the June 7, 2017 meeting, see
Meeting Recap




July 2017 StarGazerNews is COMING SOON: JULY SGN 2017


June 7 Solar Eclipse Talk by John H. now available here: June 5 Sol Ecl Talk


ASTRONOMY EVENTS FOR 2017 -the complete list- is available here: ASTRONOMY 2017 BAS Club EVENTS list for 2017 has been updated here: BAS 2017 Club Events



BAS CALENDAR OF EVENTS
June, July and August 2017 (the short list)

BAS regular meetings are the 1st Wed of the month at 7 pm and presently occur at the ES Fox Observatory. Click for Map. We switch back to the Tom Thomson Art Gallery in Owen Sound in October. There are no regular meetings in January and February. Check the calendar here: BAS 2017 Club Events (updated Jun 4) for meeting dates and other events like public viewing nights at the Fox Observatory.

If you would like to be included in our list for impromptu observing nights contact Brett T.
bretttatton@gmail.com or John H. stargazerjohn@rogers.com Some of the more interesting sky viewing opportunities are also described graphically in SKY SIGHTS.

NOTE: ALL observing events require clear skies. If it is overcast or raining, observing will NOT be possible. If you arrive at the venue and it is overcast or raining, there may not be any BAS members there. See COMING EVENTS for more details and instructions including a contact phone number if you are unsure about whether to attend due to weather. When visiting the Fox Observatory, please park at the main lot by the Learning Centre. Parking near the Fox is reserved for disability access and equipment drop-off.

NOTE: BAS Meetings and public viewings are open to the public at no charge. BAS viewing at ES Fox Observatory is also generally open to the public (see monthly listing below and our BAS 2017 Club Events (updated June 4). We welcome out-of-town guests on all of our listed observing nights. Individuals or groups may request private tours on other dates (subject to availability of guides) by contacting John H. at: stargazerjohn@rogers.com . We also offer private tours/observing on a fee basis.


Our next BAS meeting is at the FOX OBSERVATORY on Wed. July 5, 2017 at 7pm. Speaker Frank Williams: Lunar Imaging hands-on session. Regular meetings usually consist of a short business meeting and include a speaker or presentation on an astronomy topic. More details can be found in COMING EVENTS.


More details for June to August 2017 events listed below are on the COMING EVENTS page. A list of ASTRONOMY EVENTS FOR 2017 is available here: ASTRONOMY EVENTS 2017. Note this list changes from time to time as additional astronomy events are added. A list of BAS club events (meeting dates, public observing sessions, etc.) for 2017 is separately available here: BAS 2017 Club Events (updated June 4)

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June 2017

01 Thu 08:42 FQ
02 Fri 20:00 TTAG Patrons visit Fox Observatory (postponed to July 28) guide John H.
03 Sat 07:00 Venus at Greatest Elongation: 45.9°W (morning sky)
03 Sat 19:57 Jupiter 2.3°S of Moon
06 Tue 23:19 Mercury 5.3°S of Pleiades
07 Wed 19:00 BAS meets at ES Fox Obs. 7 pm (August Eclipse Preview: John H.)
08 Thu 18:21 Moon at Apogee: 406 402 km
09 Fri 09:10 FM
09 Fri 21:25 Saturn 3.1°S of Moon
10/11 Sat/Sun Bruce 150 Open House Celebration at BOEC and Fox Observatory. Open 10 am to 4 pm for daytime solar viewing and tours of observatory followed by after dark viewing Saturday night only.
15 Thu 05:00 Saturn at Opposition (mag -0.1, disc is 18.4 arc-sec across, ring tilt 26°)
17 Sat 07:33 LQ
20 Tue 18:13 Venus 2.4°N of Moon
21 Wed 00:24 Summer Solstice. BAS celebrates at Keppel Henge at 11 am.
21 Wed 10:00 Mercury at Superior Conjunction (not visible)
22 Thu 10:23 Aldebaran 0.5°S of Moon (daytime occultation 9:40 am) -see SKY SIGHTS for more.
NEW: Jun 22(Thu)-June25(Sun) Kitchener-Watterloo Centre of RASC is holding a Dark Sky Weekend at Camp Kintail on Lake Huron S. of Kincardine. More details here: K-W Star Party Camp Kintail
23 Fri 06:49 Moon at Perigee: 357 938 km
23 Fri 22:31 NM
24 Sat BAS Dark of Moon viewing night @ Fox Observatory (public welcome)
26 Mon 07:18 Beehive 3.2°N of Moon
27 Tue 20:26 Regulus 0.1°N of Moon, occultation (miss locally)
30 Fri 20:51 FQ (International Asteroid Day!)

July 2017

Jul 01 Sat 03:28 Jupiter 2.7°S of Moon
03 Mon 16:00 Earth at Aphelion: 1.01668 AU (152 092 504 km)
04 Tue 20:21 Venus 6.5°S of Pleiades (Venus between M45 & Hyades in morning sky -nice!)
05 Wed 19:00 BAS meets at ES Fox Obs. 7 pm (Frank Williams: Lunar Imaging Workshop -gibbous Moon)
05 Wed 00:27 Moon at Apogee: 405 934 km
06 Thu 23:34 Saturn 3.2°S of Moon
09 Sun 00:07 FM
09 Sun 21:33 Mercury 0.1°N of Beehive (too close to Sun)
13 Thu 14:03 Venus 3.1°N of Aldebaran
14-16 Fri - Sun Dark Sky Weekend (Bruce Pen Nat Park) BAS Members wishing free camping please register by June 30 with Brett or John. Free stargazing after dark for day visitors and regular campers at Head of Trails lot.
16 Sun 15:26 LQ
19 Wed 19:37 Aldebaran 0.4°S of Moon
20 Thu 07:13 Venus 2.7°N of Moon (beautiful i
n am sky)
20-23 Thu - Sun Starfest Weekend at River Place Camp. Pre-register at www.nyaa.ca/starfest
21 Fri 13:09 Moon at Perigee: 361 238 km
23 Sun 05:46 NM
25 Tue 04:49 Mercury 0.9°S of Moon: (occultation but miss locally)
25 Tue 06:14 Regulus 0.0°S of Moon (occultation but below our horizon)
25 Tue 13:03 Mercury 0.8°S of Regulus
26 Wed 20:00 Mars in Conjunction with Sun (not visible)
28 Fri 16:15 Jupiter 3.1°S of Moon
29 Sat 00:00 Delta-Aquarid Meteor Shower (20 per hour, moon 35%)
30 Sun 00:00 Mercury at Greatest Elongation: 27.2°E
30 Sun 11:23 FQ

August 2017

Aug 02 Wed 19:00 BAS meets at ES Fox Obs. 7 pm (Starfest Recap)
02 Wed 13:55 Moon at Apogee: 405 026 km
03 Thu 03:31 Saturn 3.5°S of Moon
07 Mon 14:11 FM
07 Mon 14:20 Partial Lunar Eclipse; mag=0.246 (vis. in Eastern hemisphere only not locally)
11 Fri 20:00 Chantry Island Chambettes visit Fox Obs. for star tour. (Guide: John H.)
12 Sat 15:00 Perseid Meteor Shower (90/h, moon is 75%) Public viewing at Fox.
14 Mon 21:15 LQ
15 Tue 20:00 Owen Sound Cub Scouts tour of Fox Obs. and stargazing. (Guide: John H.)
16 Wed 02:39 Aldebaran 0.4°S of Moon (occultation but miss locally)
18 Fri 09:14 Moon at Perigee: 366 129 km
19 Sat 00:45 Venus 2.2°N of Moon (nicest on 19th in morning)
20 Sun 03:15 Beehive 3.2°N of Moon
20 Sun 14:08 Venus 7.2°S of Pollux
21 Mon 14:26 Total Solar Eclipse; mag=1.031 The Great N. American Solar Eclipse!
21 Mon 14:30 NM
25 Fri 09:00 Jupiter 3.5°S of Moon
26 Sat 17:00 Mercury at Inferior Conjunction (not visible)
29 Tue 04:13 FQ
30 Wed 07:25 Moon at Apogee: 404 307 km
30 Wed 10:23 Saturn 3.6°S of Moon


A list of ASTRONOMY EVENTS FOR 2017 is available here: ASTRONOMY EVENTS 2017. Note this list changes from time to time as additional astronomy events are added.

An astronomical calendar for 2017 (with diagrams of sky sights) is available for download from Alan Dyer's website here: www.amazingsky.com (look at the bottom of the "about Alan" page).

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Naked Eye/Binocular Astronomy Events :
Saturn and Jupiter prime viewing this summer


The famous ringed planet Saturn reached opposition June 15 and Jupiter did the same a few months ago. Even before true darkness sets in these long twilight nights, both are bright enough to poke out of the twilight skies. About the only additional views you get waiting to see Saturn in dark sky is a look at its fainter moons. Apart from Titan which is magnitude 8.5, the moons of Saturn are 9th magnitude and fainter, so larger apertures show more. A 12-inch scope will usually show 4 of 5.

Both Jupiter and Saturn will be visible for the next few months and featured at star parties until the fall.

In the morning sky, Venus is cruising along towards the Hyades Cluster and passes through it in mid-July. Mercury switches into the evening sky for most of the summer and by September it joins Mars back again on the west side of the Sun where Venus also joins in the group. Mid-September mornings feature all three planets lined up before dawn.

Image below shows Saturn in the lower left and Jupiter in the upper right corner. Image by John H. [The tree reminds me a lot of Wile E. Coyote, but maybe it is just my imagination working overtime. Antares is just to the right of Saturn and the "claws" of the scorpion also show up and Spica is below and left of Jupiter. This image was taken from just south of Petrolia and you can see lots of light pollution along the horizon. There was a crescent moon out as well.]

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Jupiter Viewing Great After Dark All Month


Jupiter reaches opposition April 7 and rises in the eastern sky at sunset. It is now well up inthe sky and worth a look even in twilight. Viewing is good all May and into June. Diagram below shows the path of Jupiter as it retrogrades away from Spica until June 8 when it starts "prograde" motion again and slides back towards Spica. It finishes the viewing season in September sitting about 3° above Spica over the western horizon (if you can see it in the solar glare). However, between now and then there are lots of Jupiter-viewing nights available. Saturn is starting to rise earlier too. Click on the image to download a copy. More in BAS WEBLOG.

Jupiter Apr1 - Sep 1 2017



Saturn Reaches Opposition June 15


Saturn reaches opposition June 15 and rises in the eastern sky at sunset, crosses the sky and sets in the west at sunrise. The planet is getting higher and higher above the eastern horizon at sunset and into better viewing position as we get into summer. Brian Ventrudo has created an excellent document describing all the ins and outs of observing Saturn this season and has made it available at his Cosmic Pursuits website here:
http://cosmicpursuits.com/1755/guide-to-observing-saturn-in-2017/


Image below: The architecture of Saturn’s rings and cloud bands (image credit: Robert English).

Figure-3-Saturn-Clouds-and-Rings-1024x677




From Our Astrophotographers:


Paul Zelichowski imaged the graze of Aldebaran Mar 4 and sent in this image taken with his 20-inch Hyperbolic Newtonian Astrograph u
sing an SBIG STL11000M camera w/H-alpha filter 0.1 second exposure. it duplicates nicely the visual view through binoculars. This image was taken after the actual graze was over and Aldebaran was clear of the lunar mountains which were in darkness to the left of Aldebaran in this shot.


Moon-021HA2_400K




Frank Williams latest submission to the "BAS Hall of Astrophotographic Fame" is an image of M17, or the Swan Nebula in Sagittarius.
He writes:
"worked on Swan Nebula M17 during Starfest week from my little observatory in Allenford, and with cloudy weather here got to processing it. This has Luminance 1 hour, red filter 90 minutes, blue and green filters 75 min [using a] 140 mm TEC apochromatic [refractor] sbig STL 11000 camera cooled to -20c (As cold as I could get it running peltier cooler flat out). Processed in Pixinsight slight crop (to remove misaligned frames)".

All I can add is "WOW!"


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The countdown to the Great Aug 21 2017 Solar Eclipse continues:



Eclipse-montage_111K
Mar 29, 2006 Solar Eclipse Montage from Antalya Turkey by J.Hlynialuk



If you are looking for a detailed map of the ground track of the Aug 21, 2017 eclipse here it is:
125dpiGroundTrack
Note: this is a big file -be patient.

More info is available on the
2017 SOL ECLIPSE tab.



ES Fox Observatory Clear Sky Chart

Note: the chart below may not show the current cloud patterns.Click anywhere on the chart for the current display. If chart is still out of date try clearing your browser cache.



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Auroral Displays

Auroral displays in our area are declining as we have passed solar maximum. There have been periods of "blank Sun" where sunspots have been totally absent for a time. However, at far northern and southern latitudes near the auroral ovals, sometimes magnetic disturbances from the sun produce auroras even without visible sunspots. So if the auroral oval in the graphic below is showing an intense RED, aurora borealis may be visible from your location. The graphic is updated regularly with time indicated at the top in UT so subtract 5 h to get local EST, or 4 h for DST. (Use the appropriate factor for other time zones). For more information click here: NOAA home website.

Current Auroral Oval not available right now





Click on image below for the
Current Planetary Index Chart or Latest Solar Heliospheric Observatory Images:


Screen shot 2015-10-12 at 2.57.38 PM ........................... Screen shot 2015-08-11 at 10.46.57 AM

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From the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope Image Archives:
A recent meeting of BAS showed images from the CFHT on Mauna Kea. By popular demand, this space will be devoted to showcasing some of these. Have a look at this site for more: CFHT Image Of Month


CFHT-DomeNightNorth-Cuillandre-1999
Star trails and "see-through" dome. Polaris altitude = 20° at Mauna Kea.

Jan-Image2016-CFHT-Coelum
Horsehead Nebula

Mar-Image2016-CFHT-Coelum
Helix Nebula

Dec-Image2015-CFHT-Coelum
NGC 6124 Open Cluster

Nov-Image2015-CFHT-Coelum
Portion of North America Nebula (Gulf of Mexico/Yucatan)

Feb-Image2016-CFHT-Coelum
Spiral galaxy IC 342

Sep-Image2015-CFHT-Coelum
Dust Cloud in Milky Way (B143)