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February Observing Evenings

Every Thursday in February will be dedicated to observing, bring your own telescope, binoculars or camera or use one of the Societies. If members haven’t yet passed the test to use the 16″ Peter Hindle telescope this is the perfect time to do it!

Meteors Detected in December 2018

Our automated meteor camera and meteor team, detected 239 meteors in December, despite the cloudy weather, 60 of these were identified as part of the Geminid meteor shower. The brightest meteor detected was a magnitude of -1.8.  During December we identified meteors from 22 different showers, but the geminids was by far the strongest.

Below is a video of the meteors detected by the meteor camera operated by the society, in December 2018, the meteors are ordered by brightness based on analysis by UFO analyser.


46P Wirtanen

Comet 46P Wirtanen was billed to be brighter than ever this apparition and when at its brightest it would be passing within 1 degree of M45, however the UK weather conspired against us, some members got images from outside the UK and others from before it reached its brightest, but our visit to Ashdown forest was cancelled due to 100% cloud cover and rain. 

On Thursday 13th December 2018 many members observed the comet at the Dick Chambers Observatory, through binoculars (a very faint fuzzy blob only visible with averted vision) and through the 16″ Peter Hindle telescope.




Comet Wirtanen, 46P taken 16 Dec. 2018 @ 0030 hrs., in Cottowood, Arizona, USA by Richard Bohner

Canon 6D, 200mm f2.8 lens, ISO 800

75 second exposure time.


Image by Richard Bohner

Here is my latest image of Comet 46P.  Taken Thursday night.

Canon 6D, 200mm lens f2.8, ISO 800 60 second exposure.

It was a little windy Thursday night with gusts of 25mph and moon


Image by Richard Bohner, tahen on 8th December 2018 in Cottonwood, Arizona 

Comet 46P Wirtanen on 8 Dec with Canon 6D with 200mm f2.8 lens, 60 second exposure.


Image by Honor Wheeler

I’ve been lucky to have imaged the comet twice myself, once on Friday 7th & again on Sunday. The seeing has been pretty poor but it was just visible in 10x50 binoculars and looked pretty good in my 72mm refractor and 40mm eyepiece.

Comet-46P-Wirtanen Kevin Langford

Image by Kevin Langford

Taken on 11-12-2018 using a Canon 750D with a 75 to 300 zoom lens on a Sky Adventurer tracking mount.