How to photograph the planets

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Starting in astrophotography

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David Hearn takes outreach to new level with Kissimmee Park Observatory

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Public outreach is an oft used and abused term nowadays, but I find it the wrong label for astronomy. In Astronomy we are reaching out for the stars! What is really meant in this context is knowledge sharing and encouraging people to raise their eyes to the stars. I found it somewhat depressing that a …

Of all the planets that orbit around our Sun there are two that are easily visible and are fascinating objects to view. These are, of course, Saturn and Jupiter. Of these Jupiter is prominent in our night skies at the moment. At magnitude -2.06 it is the third brightest thing in the sky after the …

The media was full of talk of comets with the inaugural visit of Comet ISON C/2012 S1. It was pre-hyped as being “The Comet of the Century”, being visible in daylight etc, etc. The reality of the matter is that comets are strange beasts and are rarely predictable unless they have been round a few …

Falling stars, shooting stars and fireballs are all common names for meteors. ‘Catch a falling star and put it in your pocket’ was a number 1 song by Perry Como from 1957. The lyrics, of course, allude to meteors. To bring in the new year there is a regular meteor shower called the Quadrantids. This …

It is very difficult to draw up a Top 10 list in any subject. In astronomy it is even more difficult due the the huge number of prospective candidates for the list. I have made it somewhat easier by restricting the list to things that beginners may view with relatively basic equipment. My list is …

When you look up into the night skies you will see a myriad of twinkling stars. With all of the stars in the sky you would have thought it would be impossible to recognise individual ones, but you would be wrong. Of course, nobody can recognise all of them but by starting to see patterns …