I’m quite sure that the entire crew aboard the International Space Station were looking down at a bunch of Astro-geeks in a vacant block near the centre of Yarraman, Queensland when we captured their home crossing the face of the sun. I can only assume they were as excited as us looking up!
OK, I had a daft idea yesterday. It struck me that all planets, dwarf included, are huddled on this side of the sun and potentially visible at some point during the night.
So on Brisbane’s coldest night of the year so far, I pulled an all-nighter.
I did plan to do a nice wide field observatory shot for “Earth” but at 5am I was just too knackered so you’re stuck with a selfie which is all I could manage!
I do take a lot of star-trails photos!
Not only do I like the dramatic effect of the trails themselves, but there is a certain mystery in the end result caused by stray light from unexpected sources. This photo was no exception with extra drama being added by the road-trains crossing the Nullarbor Plain 24/7. Taken on the WA/SA border over four hours, this image really captures the spectacular landscape of the area and how humans have impacted it.
Tucked away in outback Western Australia is a very bizarre but ultimately engaging art installation by the British artist Anthony Gormley. Over 50 locals from the town of Menzies stripped naked to be scanned and used ad the basis of these weird figures scattered across Lake Ballard.
Spoiler Alert: The moon won!
And occultation of a bright star by the moon is a rare sight indeed. Australasians were treated to a tussle with Regulus on the 4th of May and I was lucky to have perfect conditions in Woomera, South Australia where I found my self three months into a 12 month adventure around Oz.
Armed with my trusty portable occultation timing kit and a modified 60mm binocular objective I was able to record the event. Of course, the view was much nicer ‘live’ through an unmodified set of Bino’s!
There is no greater honour, than to be judged by your friends and fellow Qld astronomers. My Nightscape “Reach for the Stars” won the Erwin van der Velden Memorial Trophy for Non-Telescope Astrophotography 2016 at Queensland Astrofest. Here’s how it was done:
Out intrepid team of Astronomers recently travelled to the Queensland Outback to look for evidence that the circular feature that I identified in 2013 using Google Earth is a meteorite impact site and not just a hole in the ground!
That’s Pranvera Hyseni, Rob Black and myself weeding out meteor-rights from Meteor-wrongs over lunch.
So is it or isn’t it? Well we think it is, but it’s not as easy as that – to be formally recognised there needs to be a published peer reviewed scientific paper confirming it and that isn’t going to happen in a hurry! So in the mean time here is my write up in progress: http://shadowchaser.com.au/crater-bradshaw/
For my astro-geek friends, how about something a little closer to home! Here are some of the many objects that the human race has littered our orbit with. They put on a spectacular show for me tonight whilst I was out observing 🙂