Nov 232013

On the evening of 2 Nov 2013 or morning of 3 Nov 2013 at the Rainwater Observatory, at roughly 6:00 U.T. Observed Barnard 33 and IC434 with my 16 inch f/4.5 Meade Dobsonian Reflector, Alnitak was out of the field of view, the flame extended above the three stars that include NGC 2023 and could see the silhouette of the Horse Head above the middle star on the Flame with my Hydroden Beta Filter, the flame appeared white in the filter. I used a 26mm 2inch wide angle eyepiece which was about 70 power made by Meade that came with the telescope, that was reserved for the observation, there was no dew on the eyepiece or on the primary and secondary mirrors. Observaiton made by Doug Horacek Resident Astronomer of the Von Braun Astronomical Society of Madison Alabama.
Picture is to show the Horse Head Nebula Section I saw.

 Posted by at 7:41 pm
Feb 282013

Starting between 6:00 and 7:00 P.M. Friday Evening 12 April 2013 will be the Messier Marathon evening, bring your scopes and see how many Messier Objects you can record, the spring constellations will be out early to be replaced by the summer constellations later in the evening. If you do not have a Messier certificate, this will be a great opportunity to pick up some more Messier Objects for your list. Bring your scopes and have a great time hunting for Messier Objects. Call Doug Horacek for more information at 256 772-6788.

 Posted by at 4:09 pm
Feb 282013

On Friday evening 22 March 2013, there will be a Youth and Adult Observing Night at 7:00 P.M. CDT, the Planetarium Presentation will begin then the topic will be Orion as the Winter Constellations begin to set in the west and make room for the Spring Constellations. Youth and Adults are invited to bring their telescopes and observe afterward. We will have view of the constellations for that evening in the Planetarium and outside the Planetarium. The Resident Astronomer Doug Horacek will give the program on Orion. Call Doug Horacek at 256 772-6788 for more information.

 Posted by at 4:01 pm
Jun 232012

Saturday evening starting after program and regular observing 10 P.M. until 2:00 A.M., 11-12 August (peak evening according to Sky & Telescope, note change of date), at the VBAS field watch the Persied Meteor Shower, the Moon will be a waning crescent, estimated between 110 and 90 meteors per hour, a great evening for observing meteors given the weather holds. Come join us for a great display of the bright Persied Meteor Shower.

Target Date: Tuesday evening, 14 August, Saturn, Mars, and Spica conjunction – call Doug Horacek at 256 772-6788 will serve pizza and root beer at Doug’s Condo. Bring binoculars and scopes with a wide field of view – will start at 6:00 P.M. to set up. Event happens at dusk and a little beyond. Alternate bad viewing dates due to weather are Monday evening 13 August, or Wednesday evening 15 August.

Target Date: Tuesday evening, 21 August, Grouping of Saturn, Mars, Spica, and the Moon at the Space and Rocket Center, event occurs at dusk and a little beyond, stay posted for more details.

Early Notice: For early risers, the Beehive Cluster (M44), Venus and the Moon will be very close together in the sky at around 4:00 A.M. on the morning of 12 September, Wednesday Morning, the only morning this happens, well worth getting up to see.

Jun 092012

Frank Schenk captured some video of the Venus Transit betwee 19:40 and 19:45 CDT, 0:40 and 0:45 on the 6 June 2012 UT caught Venus near a Sun Spot Group Cantina 68, sunspot number is from the Cantina Obseratory in Italy, no NOAA number was referenced the next day. Frank obtained this shot with Doug Horacek’s 3.5 inch 90mm Orion Refractor, Doug moved the scope Frank took the video. These pictures were obtained just before the Sun set.

Apr 022012

This shot was magnified and cropped to better show Jupiter, the Moon, and Venus above.

On the evening of 25 March 2012 the Crescent Moon passed close to Jupiter in the sky and above was the planet Venus. Jeff Delmas captured this view with his CCD camera. On the evening of 26 March 2012 the Moon was even with Venus and Jupiter shined below the Moon and Venus. Click on the picture to get a better View

Jan 202012

Celestial Awareness Poem for January

Mars Starting to Rise

Red Planet Moving Closer

Winter Brings Cold Air

Celestial Awareness Poem for February

Big Dipper Rising

Warm Sun Higher Overhead


Celestial Awareness Poem for March

Spica Rising East

The Sun Crossing Equator

Life Starts Unfolding

Celestial Awareness Poem for April

Saturn Rising High

Earth Warming from Rising Sun

New Life is Thriving

Celestial Awareness Poem for May

Summer is Coming

Sun Climbing to Peak in Sky

New Life Rising

Celestial Awareness Poem for June

Summer Arriving

Venus Transits Across Sun

Eastern Sky Lights Up

Celestial Awareness Poem for July

Cat’s Eye in the South

Great Square Rising in the East

Heat of Summer Day

Celestial Awareness Poem for August

Mars, Saturn in West

Summer Triangle Above

Days Growing Shorter

Celestial Awareness Poem for September

First Days of Autumn

Clusters and Galaxies Rise

Fall Flowers Present

Celestial Awareness Poem for October

Pegasus Rising

Summer Triangle Fading

Fall Colors Shining

Celestial Awareness Poem for November/December

Rising Winter Sky

Jupiter Glowing in East

Cold Clear Sky Season

Celestial Awareness Poem For Galaxies Presentation

Observing for Years

To Most Distant Galaxies

Look What We Have Found

Doug Horacek Author of All Poems

 Posted by at 6:05 pm