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Here is a topic to post any astronomy related conversation, pictures, etc.

 

Today, starting at about 5:03pm CDT, Venus began it's transit across the sun.  The next time this will happen will be in 2117, then again 8 years later.

 

I managed to get a couple of pictures, since I wasn't sure if I would be around for the next one.

 

These pictures are of the image projected through my spotting scope onto to a piece of black cardboard.

Venus1.thumb.jpg.d477320a74f81dec0bb384b9e9bd430c.jpg

Venus2.thumb.jpg.d2e1ec9270025fdbfa720c275e596335.jpg

Venus3.thumb.jpg.831e0a18e81dae5b91b09811d5e33e77.jpg

Venus4.thumb.jpg.784853c855e3f4135ff0492c30d6a44c.jpg

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Here is the set up I used to capture the images.  I used my spotting scope, cutting out a piece of cardboard and taping it on around the front. This provided a shadow for viewing.

 

Obviously, you would NOT look through the scope toward the sun.  Doing so would cause almost instant and permanent blindness.  Don't do it.

 

Align the scope toward the sun. I did this by holding a piece of black cardboard behind the eyepiece and moving the scope until the bright spot appeared.  Once I had the image, I could use the focus and zoom on the scope to sharpen the image. 

 

I also had to be careful not to leave this up too long, as the heat may melt the internal workings of the scope.  I was really surprised at how well this worked.  At times, I could even make out some sun spots.

Venus5.thumb.jpg.99f1861221edfdd29f940c7a4bdead12.jpg

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awsome ofg! we did that with a lunar eclipse (dont remember if thats what its called) when the moon moves in front of the sun.) when i was in middleschool.  great shots!

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awsome ofg! we did that with a lunar eclipse (dont remember if thats what its called) when the moon moves in front of the sun.) when i was in middleschool.  great shots!

 

I remember that... We robbed the welding helmets from shop class to look at it. :)

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I remember that... We robbed the welding helmets from shop class to look at it. :)

the teacher strapped some binoculars to a tripod and rigged it up with cardboard and paper. if anyone looked at the sun dirrectly they were made to go back inside with no second chance.  lol

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awsome ofg! we did that with a lunar eclipse (dont remember if thats what its called) when the moon moves in front of the sun.) when i was in middleschool.  great shots!

That would be a solar eclipse, as the sun is being eclipsed by the moon moving between us and the sun, with it's shadow falling on those viewing it.

A lunar eclipse occurs when the moon passes through the shadow of the Earth, so the Earth is aligned between the sun and the moon.

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That would be a solar eclipse, as the sun is being eclipsed by the moon moving between us and the sun, with it's shadow falling on those viewing it.

A lunar eclipse occurs when the moon passes through the shadow of the Earth, so the Earth is aligned between the sun and the moon.

cool, thanks for the correction. i knew it was some kind of clipse  :P

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A couple of upcoming events that are usually worth watching:

 

July 28, 29 - Southern Delta Aquarids Meteor Shower. The Delta Aquarids can produce about 20 meteors per hour at their peak. The shower usually peaks on July 28 & 29, but some meteors can also be seen from July 18 - August 18. The radiant point for this shower will be in the constellation Aquarius. The near first quarter moon will set shortly after midnight, leaving dark skies for what should be a good show. Best viewing is usually to the east after midnight.

 

...and one of my favorites:

 

August 12, 13 - Perseids Meteor Shower. The Perseids is one of the best meteor showers to observe, producing up to 60 meteors per hour at their peak. The shower's peak usually occurs on August 13 & 14, but you may be able to see some meteors any time from July 23 - August 22. The radiant point for this shower will be in the constellation Perseus. The near last quarter moon will be hanging around for the show, but shouldn’t be too much of a problem for a shower with up to 60 meteors per hour. Find a location far from city lights and look to the northeast after midnight.

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Orion is in the south west late. Really bright star straight up. I havent looked to see what it is.

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