February 24, 2012

Oh Noes :(

Warkworth ruled out of telescope project | Stuff.co.nz:

And we were hoping

February 20, 2012

Laser-Zapping Telescopes Have Never Looked So Amazing

Laser-Zapping Telescopes Have Never Looked So Amazing:

Stick a fork in me, I'm done. Course I had to receive this as I was working on a TL ... *sigh*

Thanks to Makka

Also, check out this, brought to my attention by the lovely people at Earth and Sky

Red Aurora Australis - YouTube

Red Aurora Australis - YouTube:

Thanks Ozan

February 14, 2012

Day for Night

The recent Centaurids shower was a good excuse to head out to the nearby Satellite Station for a meteor party. Unfortunately the meteors were a bust due to a full moon and light shower this year, though 4 or 5 were seen - though not by me, sadly.

On the upside, ValHallen and I had managed to sweet talk a couple of the lovely ladies at work into loaning us their cameras, so I was equipped with a shiny new 550D (AKA Rebel T2i - thanks Rach!) and Val a 60D (chur Steph!). ValHallen and I were instantly in love - with the cameras, I hasten to add. Anticipation was fairly high in the same way that Sirius is fairly bright.

After a few minutes finding my way around the control layout of the 550D, I came across Live View. I've been living in the wrong decade apparently. After wasting 20 or 30 minutes quite regularly trying to focus on our old SLRs through the viewfinder, the zoomed Live View of the newer Canons was just an amazing joy. Getting pin-sharp focus was a breeze. I did find the LCD screen tended to light when I really didn't want it to, but that was no doubt due to inexperience with the camera, I'm sure it's not hard to turn the LCD off properly. That aside, I loved the 550D so much I didn't even bother trying the 60D - can't take too much excitement in one night at my age.

Hints were dropped the next morning to darling wife about a new camera, but I didn't even get halfway through my initial appreciations of Live View before I was shot down in flames, and beaten about the head with a list of things that we needed to spend money on first. She's right, but boy those cameras are awesome! One day...

Anyway, enough lusting after things I can't afford (neither can you ValHallen!), the actual shoot turned out great. A couple more pics still to develop, but these are the first ones to catch my eye. I think the big surprise for all of us was just how much light a full moon casts. With a long enough exposure, it quite literally looks like daylight, not just in the amount of light but the range of colour revealed. Click the link below to jump to Flikr for larger pics...