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Look Out Of Your Window Now! Astronomical events.

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by Withnail, Apr 17, 2010.

  1. BobClay

    BobClay Well-Known Forumite

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    Venus is now rapidly overtaking the Earth on the inside lane and becoming ever more crescent like. It will present its night side to us in early June. With a halfway decent pair of binoculars you should be able to see the crescent as it approaches conjunction over the next week or so (more or less inline with the Sun so not visible.)
    https://www.spaceweather.com/
     
  2. BobClay

    BobClay Well-Known Forumite

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    We have a naked eye comet over the next few weeks. Comet Swan, barrelling in from deep, deep space should be visible to the naked eye over the next few weeks. (Comet Atlas has discomnobulated itself and broken up.)
    Details HERE
     
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  3. Withnail

    Withnail Well-Known Forumite

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    Discomnobulated?

    I profess to being uneducated in this term.

    Is that some fancy way of saying it cocked up?
     
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  4. BobClay

    BobClay Well-Known Forumite

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    Thanks to a clear deep blue sky after sunset I was able to see Venus quite clearly, even though it's now only a thin crescent. Moving up and left at about 45 degrees there is Mercury, always a bit tricky to see as it is the closest planet to the Sun. I had to use binoculars at first, but it became completely naked eye visible as it grew darker. And further up on the same track, a thin crescent Moon with the dark side illuminated by earth light !!
    Quite a sight.
    Venus: the Goddess of Love, but in fact an Earth sized world that is the very definition of hell.
    Mercury: messenger of the Gods, a strange little world blasted by the Sun. An iron ball that may have been the core of a much larger world at one time.
    The Moon, the US is talking about a manned landing in 2024 .. not that far away. That should be something to see with modern cameras.
     
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  5. The Hawk

    The Hawk Well-Known Forumite

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    Had a good look at Mercury a few nights ago; probably as good a view as I've ever had, apart from during a total solar eclipse.

    Also been watching the very bright ISS passes, one or two supply ships and countless satellites (most, but not all, being the Starlink trains).

    Tomorrow, at 21:33 BST (20:33 UTC) the Space X Falcon, carrying the Crew Dragon with two astronauts, launches from Cape Canaveral and shortly afterwards (probably around 21:50/21:55 ish) it should be visible as it passes over the UK in a roughly west to east direction.

    The launch will be live on the internet (NASA TV etc.), so watch the launch, then wander outside to see it go over. Oh, and remember to wave to astronauts Doug Hurley and Bob Behnken; I'm sure they'll wave back.
     
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  6. Withnail

    Withnail Well-Known Forumite

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  7. Noah

    Noah Well-Known Forumite

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  8. Perrier

    Perrier Well-Known Forumite

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    No launch tonight then , better luck for Saturday.
     
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  9. Perrier

    Perrier Well-Known Forumite

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  10. The Hawk

    The Hawk Well-Known Forumite

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    Tonight's timings:

    The launch is scheduled for 20:22 BST and you will be able to watch it on NASA TV.

    The first pass over the UK will be at 20:43. Unfortunately, as this is before sunset, it is very unlikely that it will be visible from the UK. If you want to give it a go, look south/south-west.

    The second pass will be at 22:16 and should be visible, providing you have an unobstructed view towards the south/south-west. It's going to be low down on this pass, unfortunately, rising to 12 degrees at maximum.

    Finally, we have another touch and go launch, weather wise, and if this one is aborted, then we move on to tomorrow when, I understand viewing conditions may be more favourable from the UK.
     
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  11. BobClay

    BobClay Well-Known Forumite

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    The first stage landed autonomously on the recovery drone ship 'Of Course I Love You.' (I have to say I'm glad I didn't have to say that name over the air back in the day ... :teef:)

    Those drone ships perform a spectacular job of recovering major parts of the launch spacecraft. The names have been drawn from the 'Culture' books of Scottish science fiction writer Ian M. Banks, who had wonderful names for his ships (which were all actually sentient AI's who chose their own names.) I've read the entire series and lament that Mr Banks died so young for there had to be more of those books coming out of his imagination which was mind boggling.

    Anyway nice one lads. Looked like engineering perfection. :)
     
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  12. Perrier

    Perrier Well-Known Forumite

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    It was amazing to see .
    just hope we can see it go over around 22.16 .
    The ISS should pass over first then around 15 mins later dragon will be chasing it .

    Ive a 300x telephoto lens on my canon camera , wonder if it would be worth trying to grab a shot ?
     
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  13. littleme

    littleme 250,000th poster!

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    Rip Challenger Crew, today 1986

    IMG_20200530_211809.jpg
     
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  14. The Hawk

    The Hawk Well-Known Forumite

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    According to my info, it's the ISS passing at a medium height between 22:11 and 22:16, followed by the Crew Dragon, very low down, between 22:16 and 22:18.
     
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  15. BobClay

    BobClay Well-Known Forumite

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    What I found interesting was the displays presented to the astronauts. Couldn't help but think of Stanley Kubrick and his HAL9000 displays which he insisted at great cost had to be flat screen displays (no such animal back then) which meant animated back projections for each screen.

    He wasn't far off the mark although the 'touch screen' idea hadn't been anticipated.
     
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  16. The Hawk

    The Hawk Well-Known Forumite

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    A lot of science fiction is just scientists thinking ahead. As the great Carl Sagan said:
     
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  17. BobClay

    BobClay Well-Known Forumite

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    I got the ISS, that was easy. Very bright and about 40 degrees elevation. Didn't see the Dragon though, my view to the southwest isn't good at low elevations.
     
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  18. Perrier

    Perrier Well-Known Forumite

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    Same , too many obstructions here.
     
  19. The Hawk

    The Hawk Well-Known Forumite

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    Yes, it looks like everyone round here got the ISS but not the Crew Dragon. Most successful sightings of the Crew Dragon (and there were relatively few in the UK) were further south.
     
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  20. BobClay

    BobClay Well-Known Forumite

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    Death of a Comet.
    (I've also crossed Mercury off my bucket list ... :eek: )

     
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