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WELCOME TO OUR 'SPACE'.......
 
The Plantation Astronomy Club meets regularly on the third Monday of each month at 7:00 pm in Hermitage Hall. Meetings consist of a one-hour astronomy program presentation and discussion, followed by telescope viewing at Ernie's house. Membership is open to all Plantation residents.  Guests are welcome to attend meetings.
 
 

6/9/14
Astronomy club will take a summer break from June through August. We have many members that are snowbirds, and we all like to take long breaks to travel during this time. It doesn't get dark now until late, and our Summer skies are usually cloudy, so any observing would be out.

We had a very good year with attendance and interest on all our presentations. I will be adding new presentations starting on September 15, 2014, our next meeting. It will be all about binoculars, and binocular mounts, so if you have a pair, please bring them but it's not necessary.
 
The Astronomy club had some real nice telescope raffles and even gave away a $300 telescope to a deserving astronomy student. Have a GREAT summer everyone, see you in September. 
                                                          Ernie Rossi 352-728-1631

Check out the attached photos!  

1.    Imaged by Skip Rapp, The Trifid or Messier 20 is a nebula located in the constellation Sagittarius. Its name means "divided into three lobes." The object is an unusual combination of an open cluster of stars, an emission nebula ( the lower red portion), a reflection nebula (the upper blue portion) and a dark nebula (the apparent 'gaps' within the emission nebula the causes the trifid appearance. Telescope used, C 8 on a GT-5 mount with a Canon camera 40 D.

2.    Imaged by Phil Rosenburg, Messier 46 ( also known as M 46 or NGC 2437) is an open cluster in the constellation Puppis. It was discovered by Charles Messier in 1771. M 46 is about 5,500 light years away with an estimated age on the order of several 100 million years. The Planetary nebula you see NGC 2438 lies in the same line as the cluster near its northern edge. Telescope used, C 14 on a CGE Pro mount with a Canon 60 D.

3.    Imaged by Al Broxton, M 51 also known as the Whirlpool galaxy, an interactive spiral with the smaller galaxy NGC 5195 next to it.  The galaxy is located in the constellation Canes Venatici about 30 million light years away. Charles Messier discovered this galaxy in 1773 while looking for a comet. M 51 is a beautiful example of a face on Spiral galaxy. The obvious spiral shape of this object of this object is what gave it the name Whirlpool. Telescope used, C 11 on a CGEM mount, Canon camera 60 Da.

4.    Imaged by Ernie Rossi, M 42 the Orion Nebula, located in the constellation 1400 light years away. This is known as an Emission nebula and stars are being born from the hot gases within the nebula. This nebula can be seen as the center star in Orion's sword, and as a fuzzy patch using a pair of binoculars.

Telescope C 14 auto-guided on a CGEM DX mount, camera Canon 60 Da.

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Latest photographs taken here in the Plantation M 27 the Dumbbell nebula located in the constellation Vulpecula about 1360 light years away. And the second image is M 33 a Spiral Galaxy about 1/4 the size of our Milky Way galaxy about 3 million light years away located in the constellation Triangulum.

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October 2013 Photos....
We are fortunate to have several members develop their skills in astrophotography since being a member of the club. This is one of the most gratifying experiences that you are able to create, great images of objects right here in the plantation of our Universe.
 
This month we are showing some of Skip Rapp images, Phil Rosenburg, and Al Broxton.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
The International Space Station Evolves.....

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M 20 is an Emission nebula made up of mostly Hydrogen gas and dust and is a nursery of stars being born. It is located in the constellation Sagittarius about 5,200 light years away. This image was taken in Leesburg, Fl Temperature was 85 degrees, sky conditions about 3 magnitude poor transparency. Telescope was a 14" F/11 Celestron using a focal reducer bringing it down to F/7. The mount was a Celestron CGEM DX with auto-guiding. Camera used was a Canon DSLR 60 Da. 15 images were shot at ISO 3200 70 seconds each, and 10 images at ISO 6400 at 45 seconds each.

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C 11 at F/20 using a 2 x Powermate. Camera Image Source DMK 618. 600 to 1,000 frames each through RGB filter. Saturn was imaged about midnight but I was shooting at times through a lot of high clouds and had to redo some images and still some were shot through thin clouds. Saturn was also pretty low near the horizon around 15 to 20 degrees above the horizon. I am satisfied with the image considering Saturn is almost 2 months from opposition, low on the horizon shooting through unsteady air and clouds. You can easily make out the Cassini Division and the Crepe ring, plus the A and B rings.
      Mars the first image the darker one was imaged at 11:30 and the lighter one at 12:30 and you can see it had moved some what slower on it's axis then the Earth. The first image around 60 degrees some high cloud problems, the brighter image clear sky are around 70 degrees elevation. Mars is about 2 weeks away from opposition and probably it's disc was no larger then 13.2 pretty small. This will be it's Far opposition and we will have to wait for it's close opposition in 2018.
      Just over the last several weeks its north polar cap has really shrunk since its Spring time on Mars right now. Other detail is Syrtis Major, Iapygia, Mare Serpentis, Sinus Sabatis and the list of detail would be to long to print here. From a huge white cap to a very small one in just a month, WOW.
 
 
 
 
 
 

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4/9/10
 
 
 
Using the Highpass filter procedure brings up dimmer stars, more contrast, and a sharper image. This works exceptionally well on open and closed clusters. M 57 also known as the whirlpool galaxy is about 30 million light years away. Total time for imaging and processing was about 7-8 minutes, no flats or darks used.
 
 
 
CLICK TO VIEW ACTUAL SIZE
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M46&NGC2440 and M104  4-6-2011 Leesburg, Florida.  C 11, F6.3, Autoguided. M 46 10 x 90 seconds, ISO 1600, M 104 6 x 110 sec. ISO 3200, Canon 50 D. Processed Deepsky Stacker, Image Plus, and Photshop.
 
CLICK ON PHOTO FOR FULL VIEW
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2/26/11
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Saturn taken on 2-26-2011 at around midnight about 60-70 degrees above horizon. You can see the white storm coming around, plus Cassini division, and inside the ring the Crepe ring.  Celestron 11" F/10, CGEM mount, DBK21 color camera 1,000 avi files, Registax version 5.0, Image Plus. The storm reported can be seen (white line south). This is really the northern part of Saturn. Saturn's rings are just starting to open up a little so we can now glimpse detail.
 
 
 

ROSETTE NEBULA 1-11
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PHOTO BY ERNIE ROSSI

 
 
Rosette Nebula NGC 2237 (Emission Nebula) is located in the constellation Monoceros. This image was taken with a 4" APO refractor F/5.4 focal ratio on a GT-5 mount auto-guided. Long exposures are need because of all the light pollution in the area. Canon 50 D 14 x 300 seconds at 1600 ISO. Processed using Deepsky Stacker, Image Plus and Photoshop, Leesburg, Fl.  Ernie Rossi
 
 
 
 

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Hubble's variable nebula NGC 2261 taken from Leesburg, Fl. 1-26-11. C 11 at F/6.3, CGEM mount auto-guided. Canon 50 D camera 12 x 120 sec. at ISO 1600. Processed with Deepsky Stacker, Image plus, Photoshop and Noel Carboni's software.
 
 
 
 
 

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M 42 the Orion Nebula. This was done last night 1-26-2011 and I thought it came out pretty good. The seeing was fair, and lots of dew from Leesburg, Fl. C 11 at F/6.3 using a Canon DSLR 10 x 90 seconds, at ISO 1600.   
Ernie Rossi
 
 
 
 
 

 

Explore these links.....

Really fascinating pictures taken from the International Space Station by NASA astronaut Col. Wheelock.
 

Jan 4, 2011 Partial Solar Eclipse online at Universe Today .

http://www.universetoday.com/82184/spectacular-photos-from-the-jan-4-partial-solar-eclipse/

Ken’s Lunar eclipse story at Universe Today includes pics by Ernie Rossi

Red Moon, Red Planet 

 

FYI:  recent Mars rover stories and new mosaics below by Ken

Opportunity Photographed from Mars Orbit at Crater Precipice

New Years Postcards from the Edge by Opportunity Mars Rover            

Gorgeous 3 D Vistas of Martian Crater and Hydrate Minerals at Santa Maria           

Opportunity shoots Awesome Views of Santa Maria Crater  

Powerful Mars Orbiter Directs Opportunity to Clays and Hydrated Minerals    

Landfall at Santa Maria for Opportunity on Mars   

The Longest Martian Odyssey Ever  

Apollo 12 anniversary celebrated at Martian Crater as Opportunity blazes ahead 

Hubble Photos <-----click here

 
FOUNDER
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Ernie Rossi

I have been interested in astronomy for more than a half century belonging to many astronomy clubs, writing many articles for several magazines, lecturer, teaching astronomy course in several colleges, avid observer, owner of more than 30 telescopes, many built by myself, and co-founder of The Plantation Astronomy Club.

OFFICERS

Founder: Ernie Rossi,      EROSSI40@aol.com

Treasurer: Marueen McNamara; maubob@aol.com

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If you have interesting pictures to share,
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