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STADT MOERS VISITOR CENTRE

POTTERY LANE - KNOWSLEY

ASTRONOMY EVENING - FRIDAY 22 OCTOBER 2004

7:30 PM - 9:30 PM

Members of the Liverpool Astronomical Society, (founded in 1881), will display several telescopes for viewing the Moon and other objects in the night sky, if clear. There will also be an illustrated talk on astronomy.

This event is free, and is open to all members of the public.

For more information contact:-

Stadt Moers Visitor Centre - 0151 489 1239

Liverpool Astronomical Society

Geoff Regan, Observatory Director - 0151 292 7165

Dave Owen, LAS Sidewalk Astronomers - 07778 454524

EVENT REPORT - STADT MOERS - FRIDAY 22 OCTOBER 2004

After a day of almost constant rain and drizzle, as well as almost 100% cloudy skies, we were not too hopeful of clear weather for this event. However, for a few minutes before 18:00, we were able to see the waxing gibbous moon though a break in the clouds. Unfortunately, the skies were to remain cloudy until after midnight.

Me and Geoff Regan arrived at the Visitors Centre at about 19:20, with Geoff's 12 inch Dobsonian telescope, just in case the weather did clear. The Knowsley Ranger, Tony Hearn, had already opened up the building and LAS members Jim Stacey, Graham Roberts and John Naylor were also there. Jim had brought along his 5 inch Maksutov telescope, which can be seen in one of the photos below.

I set up my 3 inch f4 reflector in the main room and, from 20:05 until 20:30 did the usual slide show of The Solar System for a small audience of 1 adult and 6 children. As is usually the case with young audiences the questions came thick and fast but were fairly easy to answer.

After the slide show the weather was still 100% cloudy and although we got some respite from the rain, it usually came back again within a few minutes.

LAS member Tom Green also arrived for part of the evening and we finished at about 21:15. Before we left we agreed a date for our next visit here - Fri 14 Oct 2005. Hopefully we will get some decent weather for that event.

As seems to happen quite frequently, the weather did clear later that night, at about 01:20. By 02:00, with the help of Graham Roberts, I had assembled Geoff Regan's 12 inch f5.5 Dobsonian and the LAS 6.5 inch f10 Rental Dobsonian. Only the f10 needed to be collimated and, as it was an f10, my arms were not long enough to do this. Graham looked through the eyepiece while I adjusted two of the three collimation bolts behind the mirror. Perfection. Or, good enough to give a fine view of the quadruple star at the centre of the Orion Nebula.

The 12 inch showed the Crab Nebula, M1, very clearly. If only we had had these skies a few hours before! We packed the telescopes away at about 03:45, after more rain seemed to be headed our way.

The next Sidewalk event is at Halewood Country Park on Fri 12 Nov 2004.

For more details of this, and other Sidewalk/LAS events, go to the following URL:-

http://www.angelfire.com/pokemon2/pirsig/sidewalk.html

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