Year: 2014

Daily cosmobite: Fomalhaut’s dusty ring

November 21, 2014

The brightest star in Piscis Austrinus is Fomalhaut. Images made by the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) in 2012 revealed a narrow dusty ring probably constrained by a pair of unseen planets.

Jan 2015 : Celestial Summer Night Programs

November 18, 2014

January 2015 is predicted to be hot, hot hot. So get out and about to Sydney Observatory and enjoy the evening telescope viewing, hearing amazing stories of the night sky and soaking up the atmosphere in one of the most important heritage and scientific sites in Australia.

Daily cosmobite: Philae falls for comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko

November 12, 2014

If all goes to plan the Rosetta spacecraft will release its comet lander Philae just after 8pm (AEDT) tonight. Philae will hopefully make the first ever landing on a comet (67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko) in the early morning hours of Thursday November 13 AEDT. Follow the ESA landing webcast.

Harry ponders the X3 flare from sunspot group AR12192

November 11, 2014

The GOES X3.1 flare of October 24, 2014. Sketch and copyright Harry Roberts ©, all rights reserved.        As AR12192 crossed the Sun in the second half of October, it not only grew unusually large, but it hosted six GOES class-X flares, the strongest class; the writer logged one of the six.

Daily cosmobite: Harley Wood’s dome demolished in 1986

November 11, 2014

The brick building under Harley Wood's dome was demolished in 1986. The copper dome and Melbourne astrograph were intended by Macquarie University to continue their scientific work. However, this never came to be.

Harry observes the emergence of a Great Sunspot AR12192

November 8, 2014

Emergence of a Great Sunspot AR12192. Sketch and copyright Harry Roberts ©, all rights reserved. What is it that causes some spots to grow very large? All are shaped by magnetic fields – stronger fields make bigger darker spots – but is this the sole reason?

Daily cosmobite: Harley Wood’s dome under construction

November 7, 2014

Harley Wood's dome has just returned to Sydney Observatory after a 28 years absence. It was built in 1952 to house the Melbourne astrograph, a photographic telescope. It is now part of our new East dome which sits on the same site as Wood's original dome.

VLA and the town that never was….

November 6, 2014

The Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (VLA) is located close to the town of Socorro, New Mexico and is perhaps best known as the radio telescope facility used by Jodie Foster in the movie ‘Contact’.

Daily cosmobite: The Andromeda galaxy

November 6, 2014

Having located Pegasus, the Winged Horse, on Melbourne Cup day now try looking for the Andromeda galaxy - the next closest large spiral galaxy. It is the fuzzy oval below the word 'Andromeda' in Tuesday's cosmobite.

Solar Eclipse Conference – Part 2

November 5, 2014

The official opening reception was held at the New Mexico Museum of Space History. This museum looks at the history of space from the International Space Station back to Dr Robert Goddard’s rocket tests in the 1930s.