Yet again it was another cloudy night but that did not stop yet another good turnout of members with a few new faces too.
Phil gave a very interesting talk on vintage refracting telescopes. Starting with an quick explanation of how they work and the basic terms used to describe them such as focal lengths and ratios. There was a detailed walk through of the development from the very first refractors through to the modern APO’s of today, with an explanation of how lenses developed from a simple single lens through to multiple and later coated multiple lens combinations.
It is obvious that Phil has owned a good number of these works of art over the years and his enthusiasm was very well received and reciprocated by the audience. Phil gave some advice on what to look for in buying a vintage refractor and also gave some good book recommendations.
The lunar sketching / imaging competition was then judged by Phil, an experienced and knowledgeable lunar imager himself, from a number of entries received despite the bad weather of late. The winner was ex GCSE Astronomy, now sixth form student Vaughn, who won a Philips Moon Map donated by Mr Perkins.
Mr Perkins then gave a very brief recap of some of the latest developments with the ESA Rosetta mission and reminded members that the NASA Orion mission launches next Thursday (4th Dec). This will be streamed live via the internet on http://www.NASA.gov and by clicking on the NASA TV link. The Orion mission looks set to be another huge landmark space program in beyond Earth orbit manned missions.
Our next meeting will be the Christmas Quiz on Wednesday 17th December at 6:30pm. All welcome for mince pies and, if last year was anything to go by, fun and laughs.
One of the sketches submitted by Vaughn, winner of the lunar sketching competition.