Saturday, August 05, 2006

the morning after (Union)

At 9:03am, the humidity finally started dropping.

temp: 24°C
humidity: 70%

I just remembered the dew point number in weather prediction. That must be the critical temperature where the air gets supersaturated... Must pay attention to that more in future.


Looked for sunspots in the day time. Couldn't see any... Nothing Friday around supper. Nothing today at 8:51am. Mildly disappointing.


David shows hints of extensive knowledge of astronomy... Is he a closet astronomer? That gives me a great gift idea... But I'm not telling!

I thought Miranda would be more interested in the skies above. But she's a jaded, bored tweener clearly entangled in boyfriends, shopping, emoticons, and hormones.


Headed into town around 11am or so, running errands, and bought a (second) shower cap for Mom's telescope. Dave was with me at the drug store. He later admitted shuffling away so to not be seen with me!

Mom had at some point purchased a shower cap. I thought I had told her we needed two... Anyway, the newt tube is now better insulated.

As we chatted about it, Mom intimated she is going to make tight fitting caps. I'll have to discuss with her the design she's considering: we need to be mindful of the nuts at the mirror end and the eyepiece holder, accessory mount, and Telrad mount at the open end. I also need to learn what material she's planning on using. I suppose fabric is OK: the key purpose is to reduce dust and debris into the tube. But to cut down moisture, we should use something non-porous.


A low battery indicator lit up on the Oregon Scientific eb313hg portable weather station on Friday. Got the unit mid-March? So its lasted 4.5 months. OK, I played with the backlight unnecessarily at the beginning. And I think the alarm got triggered by accident a couple of times. Still... That's somewhat quick.

I bought two new lithium 2032s from The Source. They offered me a battery replacement warranty special thingee (I usually don't go for these). It was cheap: an additional $1.50 per battery. This means I can replace each 2032 twice within the next three years! Sweet deal. Little do they know how the weather station eats batteries...


I reviewed my old blog notes to verify that I gave Mom solar eclipse glasses made of Mylar in Dec 2000. Still, we looked in the kitchen drawers, in the telescope folder in garage, and in the Telrad box. No sign.


I reviewed my notes and skimmed my books for data on photography.

I found my old notes for exposure times for star trails. Assuming wide angle and 400 film, I could use f5.6 for 1 hour or f8 or more for 3 hours.

For wide-field planet shots, I could use the 100mm at f2.8 for 4 to 20 seconds using 400ASA. Wow. I haven't used my “portrait” lens very much. It would be good to get it into service.

But I couldn't find any data, at the time, for exposure times for shooting Jupiter through the telescope. Which was probably a good thing...


I thought of a potentially good analogue to describe galaxy: a Ferris wheel.


I finally had a snooze (in my tent) I was so tired...

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