Exploring the Stars, Laureate Epsilon Beta Chapter of Beta Sigma Phi International, November 26th, 2015

Mostly cloudy skies greeted 12 visitors from the Laureate Epsilon Chapter of Beta Sigma Phi International for Exploring the Stars at Western University’s Cronyn Observatory, Thursday, November 26th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. Graduate student Shannon Hicks presented the digital slide presentation “Our Solar System” and fielded questions.

RASC London Centre was represented by Dale Armstrong, Peter Jedicke, Tricia Colvin and Mark Tovey. When everybody arrived upstairs in the dome, Peter and Dale talked about the history, design and construction of the big 25.4cm refractor (including the Schmidt camera and Cassegrain reflector piggy-backed on the 25.4cm refractor) and the Observatory. There was one star seen in a tiny break in the clouds, which Dale thought was Aldebaran. Dale set up the Observatory’s 8-inch (20.3cm) Meade Schmidt-Cassegrain (26mm Plossl eyepiece, 77X) and directed it towards the lights on the communications tower in south London. One or two people also got a brief glimpse of the one-day-past-full gibbous Moon in the Schmidt-Cassegrain through an opening in the clouds. Peter distributed 8 or 9 copies of the pamphlet “Getting Started in Astronomy” (RASC, SkyNews [2015]) to interested visitors. Everybody was gone by around 9:00 p.m. after an interesting and enjoyable evening of astronomy.