IN THIS ISSUE
Earlier this month it was revealed by a NASA-sponsored team, that a meteorite, discovered 12 years ago in Antarctica, contains some evidence that primitive life may once have existed on Mars.
The Martian origins of the meteorite were only recognized three years ago. Since that time scientists have been examining carbonite "globules" contained in the rock.
It was the analysis of those "globules" which resulted in the August 7 announcement from NASA. Although the President himself has cautioned that the findings must be "subject to a methodical process of further peer review and validation", the meteorite, designated ALH 84001, should provide some lively discussion at our general meeting.
If you hold a key, please remember that you have already agreed to honor the following points in your User Agreement for The Dark Site.
1) Pay $3 per car, per visit, and place this money into the slotted box mounted on the post to the south of the owner's home.
2) Always leave the observing hill gate closed and locked. Leave the Mines Road gate, and any other ranch gates, in the same condition as you found them.
3) Accompany any guest you bring at all times.
4) Alcoholic beverages are forbidden on the observing hill and on the ranch. 5) All fires are prohibited all year long. This includes barbecues and camp stoves.
6) Keys may not be duplicated, transferred or shared.
Please drive slowly, about 5 miles per hour, to prevent dust clouds from forming behind your car. It is important for us to remember that using The Dark Site is a privilege - one that all of us need to protect.
To receive your new combination, call one of the club officers listed in the box below. Have your observing hill key in hand so that your number can be verified. Thank you for helping preserve TVS access to The Dark Site.
Checking account: $5,030.78 Certificate of deposit: $3,032.25 Money market: $1,189.75
The money market fund is the club's savings account.
Welcome to TVS Our ranks grew by four new memberships earlier this summer. At the next general meeting please help welcome Gregg Nausin, Michael and Vanessa Praus, Allen Klein, and the Richard Thomas family.
In addition, long-distance member and loaner scope owner Conrad Stolarski has renewed his Patron Member status with the club. We particularly appreciate his extra support and the continued use of his telescope.
Latest from the library
Chris Cody took over as club librarian this spring, and we are just getting around to telling you about it now. Many thanks to Bob Braddy, who had hauled our books, tapes, and magazines for more than a year.
Introduce yourself to Chris if you have not yet met him. You'll find him at the library sign-out binder during the break at the August general meeting.
If you are looking for a back issue that was not at a prior meeting call Chris at (707) 749-6550. Let him know what you are looking for.
Board members, and all interested general members, are reminded that the planning meeting will be held Monday, August 26, at 7:00 PM Rich and Barbara Green will host the confab at their home at 474 1 Apple Tree Common, Livermore. For directions call them at 510 /449-2190.
Club events, star parties, future speakers, and The Dark Site Sky Shack Observatory will be discuss ed. In addition, topics like the binocular scope program, Project Astro and the AANC can be added to the agenda if there is interest in them.
Club officers are always eager to hear from members with new ideas about activities or poli cies for TVS.
Planning meetings are always open to all members,
or you may call any officer listed on
and share your thoughts.
Loaner Scope Program Chuck Grant reports that the Unitron refractor donated by Jerry Howland is not already out on loan. Other instruments are available too, and may be rented at the August general meeting.
Remember that September 26 is a total lunar eclipse, and you will want to be very familiar with operation of a borrowed scope if you plan to use one that evening.
Additionally, scopes are available for use at the Glacier Point star parties. Any member who rents a scope and uses it at any public star party during the month it is borrowed will automatically receive a full refund of the $15 rental amount.
You may meet with Chuck at the August general meeting, or call him in advance at (510) 449-1500.
General meeting dates:
September 27 October 25 November 22 December 20
August 30-Sept. 2 Glacier Point Dusk Yosemite Public star party and viewing
September 21 Sycamore Grove 8:00 pm Livermore Planets and the solar system
Rich and Barbara Green are organizing potluck assignments to cover the evenings before viewing begins. If you wish to be part of this event, call them by Sunday, August 25. Tell them how many people you will be bringing, and which nights you will be attending. Call them at 510 /449-2190 to make reservations.
President Dave Anderson (510) 661-4249
Secretary Earl Mack (510) 828-1414
Vice President Bob Braddy (510) 855-0964
Treasurer Gene Nassar (510) 462-7843
Observatory Director Chuck Grant (510) 449-1500
Eyes on the Skies BBS Mike Rushford (510) 443-6146
Web Site http://www.hooked.net/~tvs/
Editor Alane Alchorn (510) 455-9464 (510) 455-9466 fax email@example.com
Meeting Location Unitarian Universalist Church in Livermore 1893 N. Vasco Rd. 3/4 mile north of I-580
Rich Combs Chuck Grant Rich Green Al Smith
August 15 Thu White Mountain Star Party.
(Grandview campground tonight).
Europa's shadow transits Jupiter 8:36 to 11:24 PM; satellite transit ends 9:32. 16 Fri White Mountain Star Party. (Barcroft High-Altitude Research Facility).
Mercury 0.3° north of Moon; occulted in South America. 17 Sat White Mountain Star Party.
Good weekend for observing: no Moon after 10 PM 18 Sun White Mountain Star Party.
19 Mon Ganymede reappears from occultation by Jupiter 8:55 PM,
eclipsed by planet's shadow 9:47 PM to 1:00 AM Io transits 12:46 to 3:01 AM (AM=20th). 20 Tue Venus at greatest western elongation (46° ) in morning sky.
Io occulted, then eclipsed, by Jupiter 9:54 PM to 1:11 AM (21s t). 21 Wed Mercury at greatest eastern elongation (27° ) in evening sky. Unfavorable apparition for northern la titudes.
First Quarter Moon 8:36 PM Moon occults Theta Librae (mag. 4.3): disappearance at dark limb 9:56 PM Io transits Jupiter until 9:28 PM; shadow transits until 10:30 PM 22 Thu Europa transits Jupiter 9:09 to 11:55 PM; shadow transit begins 11:12 PM
23 Fri Tri-Valley Stargazers meeting 7:30 PM PDT. Unitarian Universalist Church in Livermore,
1893 N. Vasco Road, Livermore. (3/4 mile north of I-580). Callisto eclipsed by Jupiter 8:15 to 11:43 PM 24 Sat Jupiter 5° south of Moon.
25 Sun AANC Meeting 1:00 PM Lawrence Hall of Science, Berkeley.
Neptune 5°, later Uranus 5° south of Moon. 26 Mon TVS Planning Meeting 7:00 PM Loca tion TBD.
Ganymede occulted by Jupiter 9:22 PM to 12:31 AM (27th). 27 Tue Comet C/1995 O1 (Hale-Bopp) (mag. 4.5) near globular cluster M14 (mag. 7.6).
28 Wed Full Moon 10:52 AM
Io transits Jupiter 9:03 to 11:18 PM; shadow transits 10:10 PM to 12:25 AM 29 Thu Io reappears from eclipse by Jupiter 9:34 PM Europa transits 11:33 PM to 2:20 AM;
shadow transits 1:47 to 4:35 AM (AM=30th). 30 Fri Star Party at Glacier Point, Yosemite.
Saturn 3° south of Moon. 31 Sat Star Party at Glacier Point, Yosemite.
September 1 Sun Star Party at Glacier Point,
Dawn conjunction of Venus and Mars in the East, begins a si x-day seri es of conjunctions with the planets 3 degrees or closer. Dusk conjunction of Jupiter and Globular Cluster M22, near Sagittarius. 2 Mon Dawn Mars and Venus together in the East below Castor and Pollux.
4 Wed Last quarter moon.
9 Mon Alignment of Castor, Pollux, Mars, Venus, waning cresent moon and Procyon.
12 Thu New moon at 4:07 PM PDT.
14 Sat Young moon near Spica, 30 minutes after sunset, between west and southwest.
18-21 W-Sat Waxing moon moves through Scorpius and Sagittarius, on the 20th it is near Jupiter at dusk.
21 Sat 1.5 hours after sunset, use binoculars or a scope to locate Mars
in the midst of the Beehive Cluster, in the east. 26 Thu TOTAL LUNAR ECLIPSE; 6:12 PM enters umbra; 7:19 PM total eclipse begins; 7:54 PM
deepest eclipse; 8:29 PM total eclipse ends; 9:36 PM leaves umbra.
22P/ Kopff (2000) DATE R.A.
Sky Mag 08-15 19h34.2 m -23 ° 30' 149 ° E 7.8
08-20 19h38.2 m -23 ° 49' 145 ° E 8.0
08-25 19h42.9 m -24 ° 02' 141 ° E 8.2
08-30 19h48.3 m -24 ° 10' 138 ° E 8.4
09-04 19h54.2 m -24 ° 13' 134 ° E 8.6
09-09 20h00.7 m -24 ° 11' 131 ° E 8.9
C/1996 N1 (Brewington) (2000) DATE R.A.
Sky Mag 08-15 13h41.8 m +39 ° 49' 59 ° E 9.4
08-20 13h58.8 m +43 ° 04' 60 ° E 9.5
08-25 14h16.9 m +46 ° 04' 62 ° E 9.7
08-30 14h36.5 m +48 ° 49' 64 ° E 9.9
09-04 14h58.1 m +51 ° 18' 67 ° E 10.0
09-09 15h22.1 m +53 ° 30' 70 ° E 10.2
By Don Machholz "Comet C/1996 N1 (Brewington): Howard Brewington discovered this, his fifth comet, on the evening of July 3 from his home in Cloudcroft, New Mexico.
Using his 8" reflector, which is mounted on top of his 16" reflector, he visually swept up this comet some 702 search hours (and nearly four years) after his fourth find. This is the longest that Brewington has searched for a comet, his previous four finds took a total of 725 hours.
An early orbit calculation shows the comet to be approaching a perihelion distance of 0.92 AU on Aug. 3. Comet Brewington should remain in our evening sky for the next two months, moving north and dimming slowly.
Comet Hale-Bopp and Periodic Comet Kopff remain in the summer Milky Way. Comet Hale-Bopp continues to brighten as expected, which is good news to cometeers everywhere.
|Peri. Date||1997 04 01.14561||1996 07 02.19980||1996 08 03.418|
|Peri. Dist (AU)||0.9140971 AU||1.5795617 AU||0.92309 AU|
|Arg/Peri (2000):||130.59227 deg.||162.83487 deg.||44.120 deg.|
|Asc. Node (2000):||282.47 087 deg.||120.91 329 deg.||235.11 9 deg.|
|Incl (2000)||89.42807 deg.||4.72143 deg.||51.672 deg.|
|Orbital Period:||3000 yrs.||6.45 yrs.||Long period?|
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