NASA gives green light to group of citizen scientists to communicate with 36 year old ISEE-3 Spacecraft


Launched in 1978, the International Sun-Earth Explorer-3 (ISSE-3) spacecraft was the first to study the constant flow of the solar wind and after a new mission was assigned to in 1984 to pass through a cometary tail, the craft headed deep into interplanetary space. Now 36 years old, the craft will make a close approach to the Earth in August 2014 and NASA has given permission to a group of citizen scientists to attempt to communicate with and possible control the craft. Click to read more

Gitzo Systematic Series 5 GT5532S Carbon Fibre Tripod Review


The Gitzo Systematic Series 5 GT5532S Carbon Fibre tripod is an excellent choice for the travelling astronomer. With a closed length of less than 63cm and weight of only 2.8kg, it travels easily, but with a load capacity of 40kg and fantastic torsional rigidity, it provides a very stable base for high power observing. Click to read more

First Ring System Found Around an Asteroid


One significant feature that links Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune is the presence of ring system.  Now a fifth solar system body can be added to this rarefied group, and it is a rather surprising addition.  Observations at several sites in South America including ESO’s La Silla Observatory have discovered… Click to read more

A large Lunar Impact Blast on 11 September 2013

Featured image impact

On the 11th September 2013 at 20hrs 07min 28.68secs ±0.01secs UTC, two telescopes operated in MIDAS network recorded an bright flash produced by the impact on the Moon of a large meteoroid. The peak brightness of this flash reached 2.9 ± 0.2 mag in V and it lasted over 8 seconds, with estimated energy of 15.6 ± 2.5 tons of TNT. Work has important implications for impact flux on Earth. Click to read more

First International Dark Sky Reserve Named in Ireland


More good news for those of us who treasure dark skies to enjoy the wonders of the universe.  On January 27, 2014, the International Dark Sky Association named its first International Dark Sky Place in the Republic of Ireland.  Not only is the first in Ireland, but Kerry International Dark… Click to read more