Mercury Transiting the Sun, today 5/9/16

DSC_0140DSC_0140 - Version 2About 8:58 AM EDT this morning, Mercury (The round black dot) is seen beginning its transit in front of the sun. (Sunspots are visible above.) Image at about 600 mm f 6.3, 1/400 sec, hand held. 

As usual, click on to view closer, and Comments are always welcoms. M 🙂

 

 

“There’s a Moon Out Tonight” Make that FIVE! – Co-Starring Jupiter and The Four Moons

Some astronomy pastime tonight (March 21, 2016,) as Jupiter and the moon were pretty close together in the eastern sky about two hours after sunset.

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Above: The slightly over-exposed moon, and Jupiter just visible to the left. 400mm telephoto lens, ISO 4000, 1/1600 sec, f6.0, hand held

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Above: In circle: A 200x close up of a slightly longer and slightly distorted exposure of Jupiter (to left,) showing three of four “Jovian” moons tonight, with the fourth out of frame in the magnified insert. 

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Above: An accurate graphic representation of  the positions of the four brighter moons of Jupiter at about the same time the images above were taken, orientated horizontally. By the time the night is over, the two closest to Jupiter will have passed in front of the planet. (Courtesy “Javascript Jupiter”.)

1.101 8-29-62 Bergenfield, 16 W. Englewood Ave., Jupiter thru 8 inch, color, bands 2

Above: An image of Jupiter taken by a younger version of myself some years ago, using Extachrome Color film 35 mm SLR camera and the telescope below. 

1.120 9-29-62 Bergenfield, 8 inch telescope just before selling it

Above: 8″ newtonian reflector telescope

As usual, click on the image for a closer look, and thanks for viewing. Comments are always welcome. M 🙂

Glen Campbell, a Horn Antenna, a 100 ft. Balloon and The BIG Bang…All Here, All There

In Homdel, New  Jersey, less than a mile (~one km) from the often ear splitting outdoor concerts of the Garden State (PNC) Arts Center, sits this odd looking contraption designed and built by Bell Labs, the historic and  prestigious research arm of AT&T. Jeanne and I visited this recently.

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…Known as a “horn” antenna, here facing down for storage, this large (for its day) 15 meter (50 ft.) sheet metal radio telescope was specifically built to bounce and receive radio signals off early satellite experiments using  the 100 ft. diameter Echo I Satellite Balloon, launched August 12, 1960.

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(On March 14, 1963, I took this 25 minute guided photo showing the Echo I satellite, as a wavering-bright “star trail” due to it’s slight deflation, passing overhead from the then dark skies of Bayville New Jersey.)

1963.03.14 001 4 AM 25 min, Bayville, Echo Sat

But what really ensured the telescope’s place in history was the work of Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson, who in 1964 could not explain a mysterious background “noise” being picked up by the ultra sensitive cryogenic microwave receiver.

They systematically tried to eliminate any terrrestrial sources. No difference was detected when pointed generally toward New York City for example. Bird droppings, thought to be creating some sort of electrostatic interference, were cleaned from the horn, to no avail. Perhaps if the Arts Center were already there, with its 10,000 patrons and concerts, it too would have been suspected. (Although Jeanne and I would see Glen Cambell perform there four years later, Engene Ormandy (music of “Star Wars”)  was also one of the early classical performers!)

11.100 7-4-69 Holmdel, Garden State Arts Center, Glenn Cambell_edited-1

But, after conferring with Robert Dicke, a particle physicist  at nearby Princeton University – and familiar with the theoretical, but never before detected “background radiation” components of the Big Bang Theory of cosmological evolution, the source of the mysterious  “static” was eventually verified and now the keystone for the theory’s acceptance.

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The telescope is located in a semi-wooded area on Telegraph Hill in Homdel, NJ, on  the private property of Alcatel-Lucent Technologys, and not readily accessible without special permission.

As usual, thanks for viewing, and comments are always welcome. M:-)

(Thanks to Wikipedia for their indispensable resources. Please consider contributing via their site.)

Abstract Creation nets Millions for Obscure Photographer

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Lunar Plane

Always be skeptical for anything you see or read on the internet.

Last month I “took” the above, realizing seconds before, a plane was about to cross in front of the totally eclipsed moon. Having camera off mount, and scrambling for a combination of  improbable shutter speeds and exposures, the above result  later struck me as …interesting.

 Speaking of interesting, you can  purchase this masterpiece by contacting me anytime at 1-800-money$$

As usual, thank you for viewing, and comments are always welcome. M 🙂

More Plane over the Moon stuff.

Unlike last month’s silhouette image of a jet in front of the moon, tonight’s was taken with the sun still illuminating the plane. DSC_0949

The result was pretty much what I was looking for, but… I like the first one better, as in it, the moon was not ‘reddened’ by the setting sun, making the jet black plane a bit more dramatic. Note the exhaust blurring the lunar edge in the above image. 

Click on (or stretch) for a closer look, and, thanks for viewing. Comments are always welcome. M 🙂

“Got It!” Plane Silhouetted Over Moon

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August 26, 2015, 8:15 PM from the Jersey Shore

It was only a matter of time, good weather, and patience, I knew it was going to happen. It was right on line. And when I clicked that shutter, I knew I had it! It was hard to contain my excited exclamation…”GOT IT” Job done!

Click on for closer look.

Thanks for viewing,  As usual, comments are always welcome. M:-)

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PAIRS: Gulls, Planes and the Sea of Tranquility

This post contains three photos. Click on any… for a closer look.

I felt that tugging feeling…. that another post was due. So I “captured” these images a little before sunset tonight, Monday, April 27th 2015.

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The plane was about 12,000 feet (3600m) probably heading to Kennedy Airport, NY. The moon was about 240,000 miles (386,000 km.) with the Sea of Tranquility being the darker plain in the center.
Gull landing on neighbors house
Gull landing on a neighbor’s house
Gull heading west with American Flad in foreground
Sea Gull heading west with the American Flag in foreground

🙂 This is my 101st post. 🙂

Thanks for viewing and for your support. As usual comments are always welcome. M 🙂