What's New at the Observatory?
There are still a couple of safety issues in the dome to
clear up and the display areas of the observatory are still
being prepared, but we hope to be able to start public tours
soon after the official opening of the building May 25th.
The Transit of Venus on June 5th
The Transit of Venus
is among the rarest astronomical phenomena and won't happen
again until the year 2117! What is a "transit" and why is it so
A transit happens when a planet (in this
case Venus) comes between the Earth and the Sun, so that its disc is
outlined against the bright disc of the Sun. This happens rarely
because the orbits of Earth and Venus are not in exactly the same
plane, but each are inclined by a different amount. Careful timing
of the event has led to a precise determination of the distance
between the Sun and Earth.
Not all areas of the Earth will see the
transit on June 5th. In Corner Brook we will only witness the
beginning of the transit; the Sun will set while Venus is still
visible against the solar disc. We hope to have our new solar
telescope installed in time to have a public viewing - with a
little luck from the weather!
Check back here for more information.
is Global Astronomy Month!
professional astronomers around the world are celebrating
the sky this month. There are numerous events scheduled
world-wide, including global star parties and remote
(online) observing. Find out more from an
Astronomers Without Borders.
First Student Photos from Our Telescope!
On April 3rd the
Physics 2151 class held a poster session containing several images they took with the
new telescope. Despite the terrible weather this term, the enthusiastic students were able to be the first class
to use the telescope!
students in EaSc 2150
- The Solar System - will again have opportunities to use the
telescope, both for observing and for course projects.
FIRST LIGHT THROUGH THE TELESCOPE!!!
Saturday 29 October 2011
Saturday, 29 October saw "first
light" through the
new Grenfell Observatory 0.60 m telescope! Starlight hit the
mirror for the first time. Although cloudy, we were able to
use "holes" in the clouds for the initial testing.
and Richard Neel (off camera)
of DFM Engineering completed the check of the telescope's
polar alignment - it's OK! - and initial focusing. On hand
to assist were Grenfell's thrilled astronomers Doug Forbes (centre)
and Darlene English (right).