Sunday, March 31, 2019

LA SILLA OBSERVATORY TURNS 50! ESO’S FIRST OBSERVATORY CELEBRATES HALF A CENTURY OF ASTRONOMICAL RESEARCH


https://www.eso.org/public/news/eso1906/















MARS & THE PLEIADES Taken by Alan Dyer on March 30, 2019 @ near Gleichen, Alberta



Mars was closest to the Pleiades star cluster last night, March 30, but is passing through the area between the Pleiades and Hyades over the next few nights for a photogenic scene and a great view through binoculars. I captured the scene with the red planet between the clusters in the deep blue twilight with an 85mm lens, then switched to a 50mm lens to capture a wider view with the ISS passing by the Pleiades (for a scene with a planet, Pleiades and people all in the same frame!) as the ISS rose out of the west. I then switched to a 200mm lens for a close up of Mars and the Pleiades set into a darker sky. The camera was on a tracker for all the images.

MARKARIAN'S CHAIN OF GALAXIES Image Credit & Copyright: Sergio Kaminsky



Across the heart of the Virgo Cluster of Galaxies lies a striking string of galaxies known as Markarian's Chain. The chain, pictured here, is highlighted on the right with two large but featureless lenticular galaxies, M84 and M86. Prominent to their lower left is a pair of interacting galaxies known as The Eyes. The home Virgo Cluster is the nearest cluster of galaxies, contains over 2000 galaxies, and has a noticeable gravitational pull on the galaxies of the Local Group of Galaxies surrounding our Milky Way Galaxy. The center of the Virgo Cluster is located about 70 million light years away toward the constellation of Virgo. At least seven galaxies in the chain appear to move coherently, although others appear to be superposed by chance.

IT’S LESS THAN 100 DAYS UNTIL THE NEXT TOTAL SOLAR ECLIPSE










It’s Less Than 100 Days Until the Next Total Solar Eclipse
By: Jamie Carter | March 25, 2019
2.1K
Here’s everything you need to know about the first of South America's two total solar eclipses within 18 months.

Artist's impression of 2019 totality over Chile
This artist’s impression shows how the total solar eclipse of July 2, 2019 could appear from ESO’s La Silla Observatory in Chile.
M. Druckmüller / P. Aniol / K. Delcourte / P. Horálek / L. Calçada (ESO)

Did you see the Great American Eclipse of August 21, 2017? If it’s etched on your memory forever, it’s likely that you traveled into the path of totality to glimpse the Sun’s corona for a few precious minutes.

In 100 days — and for the first time since that day — a total solar eclipse will once again occur on Earth. Eclipse-chasers are getting ready to observe it from the South Pacific, Chile, and Argentina.

“The experience of seeing the Sun as a black hole surrounded by its silvery corona is so visually mind-blowing,” says eclipse-chaser Sushil Dawka from Guwahati, India, who will be traveling more than 18,000 km to see totality, stopping off at the Galapagos Islands, Easter Island, and Machu Picchu on either side of the event. “The fact that science can predict this to the microsecond is so soul-satisfying that even a slim chance to view totality is worth all it takes.”

"The Great American Eclipse"
This image combines many exposures of different durations taken to reveal aspects of the widely viewed total solar eclipse of August 21, 2017.
ESO / P. Horálek / Solar Wind Sherpas project

How will this eclipse be different from the “Great American Eclipse”?
This event promises to be an even more powerful spectacle. Totality, when the Moon perfectly blocks the Sun to reveal the solar corona, will last for about 2 minutes 20 seconds in South America, which is similar to that experienced in the U.S. in 2017. However, in Chile and Argentina, totality will occur about an hour before sunset, so the Sun will appear relatively low in the sky.

“Viewing a total solar eclipse at just 12° high is quite dramatic and ideal for photographers, because you can easily frame mountains, buildings, or trees in the same field of view as the corona,” says Michael Zeiler, an eclipse cartographer who runs GreatAmericanEclipse.com. “This eclipse will be an astrophotographer's delight!”

The Sun and Moon’s low elevations will have another visual effect. "When the eclipse is low it's easier to perceive the Moon's dark shadow cone because you're looking down its throat, so you tend to see the shape of the shadow more clearly than if you look straight up into the sky,” says Rick Fienberg, former editor in chief at Sky & Telescope and now the press officer of the American Astronomical Society.

The path of totality on July 2, 2019
The path of the total solar eclipse on July 2, 2019.
Michael Zeiler / GreatAmericanEclipse.com

Where will eclipse-chasers be?
Most viewers will be in the Elqui Valley north of Santiago, Chile, and inland from La Serena, while others will watch from across the border in the high Andes of eastern Argentina, just north of San Juan.

“I will be viewing from an elevated site above the Elqui Valley in Chile, which is desirable because of the relatively long duration of totality on land, and reasonably good weather prospects,” says Zeiler. “Many of the world's leading observatories are clustered on mountain tops above this valley so that's a strong indicator for favorable viewing conditions.” The area is home to the European Southern Observatory's La Silla Observatory, which will receive 1 minute 48 seconds of totality and is holding a sold-out observing event. Solar science teams will assemble at Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory, part of the AURA Observatory, where totality will last 2 minutes 2 seconds.

What makes for a good observing location?
A reasonably low eclipse such as this one does bring its challenges. Since the path of totality through Chile and western Argentina is mountainous, finding an observing location not in shadow at the time of eclipse will be crucial.

Zeiler has therefore developed a suite of shadow maps that show the extent of shadow at the time of totality. “These maps should be used to select a viewing site in advance of the eclipse,” he says. “Eclipse day will be too late to make actionable use of the maps because the very limited road system will experience unprecedented traffic.” Another map worth checking is eclipse-chaser Xavier Jubier’s Google Map.

How well prepared is the Elqui Valley?
As a small, rural area that’s home to vineyards and observatories, can Chile’s Elqui Valley cope with an influx of 350,000+ eclipse-chasers?

“The Elqui Valley is already prepared,” says Cristian Ballesta, owner of AstronomicTourism.com and TurismoAstronomico.cl. This will be his company’s first total solar eclipse, and Ballesta plans to watch in La Higuera, a tiny hamlet situated on the center line. “Everyone is training and preparing to best serve the thousands of visitors waiting in the area for the eclipse.”

Cloudiness projected for 2019 eclipse
Average July afternoon fractional cloudiness along the eclipse track over South America.
Jay Anderson / Eclipsophile.com / NASA

What’s the weather going to be like?
A so-called marine layer is a threat to a clear totality according to eclipse-meteorologist Jay Anderson’s predictions. July is the middle of winter in South America, after all. Locals agree.

“The eclipse is in winter, so on the coast it is very likely that there will be clouds, which is why to ensure a good observation it’s recommended to go to the Elqui Valley,” says Ballesta.

Limited mobility means it comes down to the luck of the weather, and eclipse-chasers will be nervous. “Despite the dicey weather conditions, I hope that the high desert will be cloudless for those few magic moments,” says Dawka.

Totality from above
A Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner will attempt to double the 4 minutes, 32 seconds of totality by flying half the speed of the Moon’s shadow.
Glenn Schneider & Geoff Simms

Are there any cruise ships and flights?
Both. There will be at least two ships in the South Pacific, including the 330-passenger m/s Paul Gauguin and the motorized sailing ship Wind Spirit.

“I’m excited about the adventure and seeing my 14th total solar eclipse," says Fienberg, who will be lecturing on the Paul Gauguin. "We will be west of where the maximum totality is, near Pitcairn Island and Oeno Island.”

There will also be a few flights off the coast of Chile, including a Sky & Telescope-chartered A320. North of Easter Island will be "EFLIGHT 2019-MAX," a chartered Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner. The latter will intercept the Moon’s shadow over the Pacific Ocean at the point of greatest eclipse, and since it will be flying at half the speed of that shadow, it will double the 4 minutes 32 seconds of totality to 8 or 9 minutes.

“Right now we have 46 eclipse observers signed up,” says Glenn Schneider (University of Arizona), a veteran of 35 total solar eclipses who developed the flight plan and will himself be on board.

A few seats are still available on these flights, both of which promise an "out of this world" (or at least "off this world") eclipse-viewing experience.

Saturday, March 30, 2019

THE 2019 TRANSIT OF MERCURY


Mark your calendar: On Monday, Nov 11th, Mercury will pass directly in front the Sun. The rare transit begins at 12:35 UT (7:35 am EST) and lasts for almost six hours. Mercury's tiny disk—jet black and perfectly round—will glide slowly across the face of the sun, as shown in this movie created by science-artist Larry Koehn of ShadowandSubstance.com:




People in every continent except Australia can see at least a portion of the crossing. In the USA, the best place to be is on the Atlantic coast, where the entire transit is visible. On the Pacific coast the transit will already be in progress at sunrise.
Warning! Mercury covers only a tiny fraction of the sun's surface, so staring at the sun remains just as painful and dangerous as ever. But with a proper filter, the Transit of Mercury can be a marvelous experience.








There are many ways to safely observe the sun, e.g., using eclipse glasses or via projection. Nothing beats a telescope equipped with an H-alpha filter. H-alpha filters are narrowly tuned to the red glow of solar hydrogen. They reveal the sun as a boiling inferno, cross-crossed by dark magnetic filaments. The sight of Mercury navigating this starscape could be mind blowing.

Transits of Mercury occur only 13 times each century. The next one won't occur until Nov. 13, 2032. This is an unusual event, not to be missed, so stay tuned.


SCENES NAPOLITAINES, "SUITE NO. 5": LA DANSE ♥ ♪




GERMANY'S LARGEST SCIENCE CENTER, THE EXPERIMENTA IN HEILBRONN, OPENED ON 28 MARCH.





With an area of around 25,000 square meters, it is a unique world of knowledge and experience. The futuristic new building houses the exhibition area “Entdeckerwelten”. The Science Dome promises to be one of the main attractions of the new science center – a unique combination of a planetarium and a theatre. It invites visitors to immerse themselves in other worlds – without visual boundaries. The high-quality multimedia and theatrical equipment of the Science Dome creates an atmosphere that is unparalleled even in today's media-influenced world – with wind and fog machines, water curtains, state-of-the-art laser technology, and the specially equipped star projector UNIVERSARIUM Mark IX from ZEISS. The auditorium on a turntable is also unique: when the auditorium rotates 180 degrees, visitors find themselves under a state-of-the-art star dome or in front of the theatre stage.
The star projector for the inclined 21.5 m dome is also in a class of its own. Modern LED light sources let the stars shine like needlesticks in the mantle of the night. The projector is the first of the series with motor-controlled shutters for dimming the stars at the sloping edge of the dome. It cooperates with several digital planetarium systems and is not only retractable but also rotates in the opposite direction to the rotating auditorium – unique in the planetarium world.
From 31 March the doors will be open to all guests. They are invited to wonder and learn.
Photo courtesy: Martin Kraus

BLACK HOLES IN THE ZEISS PLANETARIUM BOCHUM.



On Tuesday evening, the new version of the planetarium show "Schwarze Löcher" (Black Holes) entered the program of the Bochum Planetarium. Produced by the Clark Planetarium in Salt Lake City, the Bochum Planetarium has created an individual German version, which is supplemented by an introduction to the exciting topic by means of the UNIVERSARIUM planetarium projector. A very successful program that explains and illustrates perhaps the most exotic objects in space and is not hesitating to speculate about their very nature. The show "Black Holes" is part of the ZEISS catalog of fulldome shows in distribution.


MICHELE MARIOTTI - "SCÈNES NAPOLITAINES" DI J.MASSENET (MONTPELLIER, 2014) ♥ ♪









OCCULTATION Taken by Grant Petersen on March 29, 2019 @ Johannesburg, South Africa





Lucky to witness and capture a beautiful occultation of the moon and Saturn.
Samsung S8 smartphone, 7mm eyepiece, 2x Barlow mounted on an 8 Sky-watcher dobsonian telescope.
20 frame stacked image.

MARS & PLEIADES Taken by Tamas Abraham on March 29, 2019 @ Zsámbék, Hungary



In the evening on March 29 was the apparent distance 3° between Mars and Pleiades cluster. Hyades with Aldebaran as the brightest star of the cluster is on the left. Another open star cluster can be seen above Hyades catalogued as NGC 1647 by William Herschel in 1784. Technical details: Canon EOS 400D & Canon EF 50 mm, 30x30 sec, F2.8, ISO 800. Frames were stacked by IRIS software.

" ARCTURUS ZONE SKY " DESDE ROSARIO - ARGENTINA /// FOTO: ESMERALDA SOSA - INFO: LICENCIADO EN FÍSICA JOSÉ LUIS LOMÁSCOLO


... mi estrella FAVORITA ! ... y su ZONA ...







PARA VER FOTOS HD ABRIR SIGUIENTE LINK




Estrella ARTURO desde ROSARIO - ARGENTINA - Foto: Esmeralda Sosa




Constelación del Boyero ( PROYECTOR PLANETARIO ZEISS )
 PLANETARIO CIUDAD DE ROSARIO - Foto: Esmeralda Sosa




Info: Licenciado en Física José Luis Lomáscolo
( Museo Experimental de Ciencias )







Idea, compaginación & fotos a cielo abierto: Esmeralda Sosa 
(Técnica - Planetario Ciudad de Rosario )




Friday, March 29, 2019

" NUBES PINCELADAS " //// FOTOS: ESMERALDA SOSA





PARA VER FOTO EN HD ABRIR SIGUIENTE LINK







MANTENIMIENTO PLANETARIO CIUDAD DE ROSARIO - POR: GUSTAVO ARIAS //// FOTOS: ESMERALDA SOSA


.. limpieza mecanismo ALTURA DE POLO ..
















.. Gracias Vivi por algunas fotos! ..

M104: THE SOMBRERO GALAXY IMAGE DATA: NASA, ESA, HUBBLE LEGACY ARCHIVE; PROCESSING & COPYRIGHT: ROGELIO BERNAL ANDREO (DEEPSKYCOLORS.COM)



The striking spiral galaxy M104 is famous for its nearly edge-on profile featuring a broad ring of obscuring dust lanes. Seen in silhouette against an extensive central bulge of stars, the swath of cosmic dust lends a broad brimmed hat-like appearance to the galaxy suggesting a more popular moniker, The Sombrero Galaxy. Hubble Space Telescope data have been used to to create this sharp view of the well-known galaxy. The processing results in a natural color appearance and preserves details often lost in overwhelming glare of M104's bright central bulge when viewed with smaller ground-based telescopes. Also known as NGC 4594, the Sombrero galaxy can be seen across the spectrum and is host to a central supermassive black hole. About 50,000 light-years across and 28 million light-years away, M104 is one of the largest galaxies at the southern edge of the Virgo Galaxy Cluster.