Partly cloudy skies with hazy clouds greeted 24 visitors (17 children and 7 adults) from the London 68th Beavers for Exploring the Stars at Western University’s Cronyn Observatory, Wednesday, May 2nd, 2018, 6:15 p.m. Graduate student Viraja Khatu presented the digital slide presentation “The Scout / Guide Astronomy Badge,” with the title slide “The Basics,” and fielded questions. Viraja followed this with the “Crater Experiment” activity, placing a pan filled with flour on the floor, into which was dropped various size balls to demonstrate impact cratering.
RASC London Centre was represented by Heather MacIsaac and Bob Duff. Bob directed the big 25.4cm refractor (Meade 28mm Super Wide Angle eyepiece, 157X) towards the communications tower in south London. He also set up the London Centre’s 25.4cm Dobsonian (17mm Nagler eyepiece, 66X) on the observation deck outside the dome and directed it towards the wind turbine on the Engineering building. Heather set up her Celestron NexStar 90SLT 90mm Maksutov-Cassegrain (32mm Plossl eyepiece, 39X) and directed it towards the communications tower.
When the Beavers arrived upstairs in the dome, Bob gave a talk on the history of the observatory and technical aspects of the big 25.4cm refractor telescope. He also showed them the 2 clocks on the east wall of the dome and explained the difference between Standard and Sidereal Time. Viraja supervised as the visitors climbed the observing ladder to view the communications tower through the 25.4cm refractor (Meade 28mm SWA eyepiece, 157X). The Beavers also viewed through the telescopes set up on the observation deck. Bob showed them the wind turbine on the Engineering building through the London Centre’s 25.4cm Dobsonian (17mm Nagler eyepiece, 66X). Heather showed them the communications tower through her Celestron NexStar 90SLT 90mm Maksutov-Cassegrain (32mm Plossl eyepiece, 39X). The visitors were gone by around 8:15 p.m. after a very interesting and enjoyable visit to the Cronyn Observatory.