Star Gazing

Hubby and I started off with this hobby recently by enrolling into an astronomy club. Thankfully, we both love science and astronomy and hence it is just awesome fun. Attended couple of talks and hubby ended up buying another telescope for himself. I already had one.We bought another reflector, this one bigger than the old oneΒ that I had.

We attended a solar gazing day when I first had a look at sun spots and solar flares. I had never seen them before through my naked eyes. I had always seen them on the TV or internet. It was just amazing to see those spots vanishing and appearing or even moving. Solar flares were even more amazing to look at. I resolved to make my daughter or son an astronomer πŸ˜› Even if he/she hates astronomy, he/she has to become a scientist atleast for his/her parents’ sake πŸ˜€ lol. I want to next buy a solar telescope soon.

Night gazing was even better as we got to see Saturn for the first time. I could never ever focus well on planets earlier. But now that I have a best friend (hubby) for company, we did lot of hard work and finally sawΒ Saturn’sΒ rings on our telescope. It really counts as one of the happiest moments in my life. After Saturn, we saw Mars. But compared to Saturn, every other planet looks so ordinary and bahh. For the first time in my life, I saw binary stars. Never even imagined that I would be able to see one directly. Also got to see Ring Nebula (my first nebula ever). Compared to these things, seeing some constellations or star clusters wasn’t that great. All these were possible thanks to the friend that my hubby made at the club.

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An old lady and her husband are probably oldest members of the club. For some reason, she took liking towards hubby and they have kind of become buddies now. She helped us spot many of the things that we saw and we learnt a lot from her. She has been star gazing ever since she was a small kid and she can spot objects in a minute. She unfortunatelyΒ doesn’tΒ have kids, in order to pass on her acquired knowledge.

We have been liking everyone at the club. People are so friendly and nice. They encourage you, even though you are a newbie. I am not new to star gazing, but hubby is. But he is much better at focusing objects than I am πŸ˜› But I have the knowledge about various filters etc. We bought the largest magnification eyepiece possible and yesterday saw the best view of moon I ever saw in my life. We could spot each and every crater so perfectly. We spent almost an hour gazing at the moon, which was too bright yesterday. And today morning I woke up to see the sad news about Neil Armstrong’s death 😦 A very sad news!

Some people think that the bigger the scope is, the better the magnification will be. Sigh! Wish more people knew difference between reflector and refractor scopes. A person who was standing next to us had a bigger scope than we had. But his was refractor and ours was a reflector. Which definitely meant that, we had a better magnification (thanks to the costly lens we bought). But some Indians who had come thought other way and actually said that. I was kinda furious though.

Let’s just hope we get to spot more interesting objects in the sky and someday become experts like the granny friend of ours. I want to see more nebulae, Andromeda galaxy (which is supposed to be difficult to spot) and many more multiple stars. I am sure this hobby is not for everyone. I remember a friend asking me “don’t you get bored trying to spot objects in the sky?”. I was really too surprised to even answer. “Bored”? really? has he ever looked at the sky through a telescope? has he looked at how beautiful the moon looks through the telescope? Those beautiful objects in the sky amaze me too much and probably I don’t have time to get bored πŸ˜›

Try looking through a telescope guys. I am sure you will not repent. The sky is really really beautiful. I want to get into astro-imaging very soon. It looks like a tough job but I am sure I will love it. πŸ™‚

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30 thoughts on “Star Gazing

  1. I was seeing stars with naked eye on my terrace but someone told me that the light emitted by stars reach earth after 200 years and hence I was watching how the stars were 200 years back!

    I was stunned at the falsehood of star-imagery and the fact that I was watching the outdated images of stars. Since then, I have stopped star-gazing. Using a telescope, can one watch star-light in the present? πŸ˜›

    Destination Infinity

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  2. Wow all that sounds so awesome πŸ™‚ I really wish to see Saturn and Ring Nebula sometime.

    Coming to hobbies, I think everybody has their own and might find the others not worthwhile. Like people ask us why we keep going on wild safaris and not be happy with just seeing the wild beauties on TV πŸ˜› πŸ˜›

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  3. Wonderful ! I’ve always wanted to look at all the stuff in the cosmos as you mentioned above. But I never managed to do so. Now I have just the right people to guide me once I find the right time and place to do so.

    Of course, Saturn leaves all the planets behind in terms of good looks. Would it be possible for you to take pictures of what you see as well ?

    You are really lucky to have your best friend to accompany you in your wonderful hobby. Hope to read more such adventures from you.

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    • Yeah you can find clubs in your city too. Atleast Bangalore has one. Other cities in India too might have astronomy clubs.
      Right now I havent tried taking pics through my telescope. I want to learn astro-imaging though. It would be so nice to click pics.

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  4. Yes, star gazing is a fascinating hobby. I became interested a few years ago after watching a documentary somewhere (History Ch or Nat-Geo). Since then I watch every documentary in relation to the stars or old stuff regarding earth … like the piramides.

    It is hard to accept that the light we see from the stars now (the star we see today) actually emitted that “picture” long ago.

    I have been through the entire aspect of beliefs and disbeliefs. I, at one point, accepted the possibility of UFO’s and E.T.’s. Now, after “studying” so much about the universe through the documentaries I’ve watched, it became very hard to accept the possibilities of either one … as intelligent life from somewhere else in the Universe.

    Our Solar system, one of the Stars among the possible 200 billion ones in our galaxy (Milk Way), has a humongous radius all the way to the Ore Cloud. The next Star is Alpha-Centaurus which is 4.25 light years away.

    With our current knoledge we are planning to reach Mars with a manned mission in 15 years (I believe 2025). That mission will take about 9 months to reach the red planet.

    Voyager 1, the space probe launched in 1977, 35 years ago, is just about to leave the Solar System as per NASA info.

    Now, we all the possible (Theoretical Physicists claims) space shrinking and expanding, it would be possible to travel far through the Universe. Let’s say that somewhere out there, not to disappoint Karl Sagan, an intelligent planet sends manned missions throughout the Universe to “observe” other civilizations and, they are so careless that simple microwaves make their interstellar vehicle to crash into Earth …. ain’t that something???????

    How about if we put all the efforts together, from every nation involved in exploring the Universe, and try to make this planet, Earth, a better place for everyone?

    Jay Ell III
    http://smj.int-domains.com (science mambo jambo).

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    • Even I got this interest after watching some documentaries and reading books on astronomy.
      Thanks for visiting my blog Jay.
      I am just waiting for the day when we would discover some alien creatures.

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  5. Yet, in reference to Voyager I, it is leaving the Solar System at the speed of 16.49km/s. The speed of light is 300,000km/s. WIth those numbers we can estimate that the Solar System boundary sits at approximately 0.7 Ligh Years. But, the current speed of 16.49km/s was not the initial speed. The probe speeds up as time goes on. Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hill_sphere) claims the Solar System Hill Sphere to be, approximatelly, between 1 & 2 Light Years.

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  6. Welcome back AK πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ Lovely hobby u have.. and its been sometime since I have gazed at the sky fondly. Might be the time has come now and also through telescope.. will let u know my thoughts πŸ™‚

    And people might not be knowledgeable and come there through interest. Correct them and u will feel better πŸ™‚

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  7. I wonder how many posts we will see on this blog that will start with ‘Hubby and I’, ‘My Hubby’ etc πŸ˜€ Ah women.. πŸ™„
    Nice hobby to share with Hubby πŸ™‚ Build your own Astronomy tower now.. πŸ˜‰

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  8. Wow AK, we ordered our first telescope last night, can’t wait to sky-gaze, and I have a lot to learn about it.. I’m just a fascinated girl now.. I know who to contact for tips .. πŸ™‚

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