Thanks to Members for some stunning pictures of The Moon, Jupiter, and the house across the street[...] [Read more about Member Images in September 2020]

Andy Lawrence

We will soon sadly be losing one of the stalwarts of the society shortly: Andy Lawrence.  I say sadly, but for Andy and his wife, Anne, it is the start of a whole new exciting chapter in their lives as they move up to Scotland by October[...] [Read more about Andy Lawrence]

Coming Society Events

Hook's House Event - 22nd August 2020

Planned as our first real outdoor ...outreach event, it was hoped conditions would play ball for our annual pilgrimage over to Hook’s house[...]

Westerdale Event

As of ‘going to keyboard’, we haven’t yet officially had a date confirmed for the annual Westerdale star party event, but it certainly will not be in September[...]

Monthly Meetings Recommence??

WDAS monthly meetings may also possibly re- start in October, but to be honest we won’t know whether it will be feasible until after the college goes back and settled down[...] [Read more about Coming Society Events]

No.

Cancelled earlier in the year, a casualty to the Covid 19 pandemic, this year’s Whitby Regatta (had it gone ahead) would still have been a huge disappointment weather-wise with cloudy, misty and damp conditions prevailing across the weekend.  I very much doubt whether we would have even ventured onto the West Cliff at all, such were the leaden skies.  Some things never change[...] [Read more about Regatta 2020 – Did we miss out?]

In this month's edition:

  • Planetary Skylights: Jupiter & Saturn, Mars, Neptune & Uranus, Venus (with Beehive).
  • September 2020 Sky Charts

Having graced our skies throughout most of July after brightening far more than predicted, comet NEOWISE is currently residing in Coma Berenices.

Discovered in late March by the Near Earth Object Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer, aka NEOWISE launched by NASA in 2009, comet NEOWISE became readily visible to the naked eye shortly after rounding the Sun in early July.  The comet was visible low to the north during the short hours of semidarkness in the twilight skies from approximately 23:00h until 02:45h[...] [Read more about Member Images of Comet Neowise]

In this month's edition:

  • Planetary Skylights: Jupiter & Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, Mars, Venus, Mercury.
  • Meteors: Perseids
  • Comet F3 Neowise
  • Noctilucent Cloud
  • August 2020 Sky Charts

Think this may have always been a challenge to view Venus’ occultation by the waning moon. And so it proved.  The day itself was much improved on the previous 8 or 9 days and I had some optimism that something would be viewed.  The start of the occultation occurred at 08:38h from Whitby, so with compass, tape measure, binoculars and camera on hand... [Read more about Venus Occultation by The Moon (by Mark Dawson)]

Lockdown measures continue to eased, but I think that July is still too early and impractical to host a star party. It will actually be rather light anyway until the end of July. I think therefore we shall revisit the situation in a month’s time as it may be possible to host a few star parties in August... [Read more about WDAS Diary: July-August 2020]

Sky Notes - July 2020

In this month's edition:

  • Planetary Skylights: Jupiter & Saturn (Opposition), Mars, Venus, Mercury.
  • Meteors: Lyrids, Virginids, alpha Scorpiids
  • Comets
  • Noctilucent Cloud Watch
  • July 2020 Sky Charts

Strawberry Moon

They say June's Full Moon got its name as it's the month when wild strawberries begin to ripen.  ('Evidently not named by a Canary Islander!' --Andi)  Be that as it may, Mark has been out in force to take some photos for you pleasure and delight.  So ('Odd-one-out' round) which of these Moons is Mark's teaser?

 

  [Read more about Strawberry Moon]

Sky Notes - June 2020

In this month's edition:

  • Planetary Skylights: Mercury, Jupiter, Saturn, Mars
  • Lunar Ocultation of Venus
  • Meteors: Lyrids, Virginids, alpha Scorpiids
  • Comet: C/2020 F8 SWAN
  • Summer Solstice 2020
  • Noctilucent Clouds 2020
  • June 2020 Sky Charts

Sky Notes - May 2020

In this month's edition:

  • Planetary Skylights: Venus, Jupiter, Mars and Saturn
  • Meteors: Eta Aquarids
  • Comets: 2019Y4 (ATLAS), C/2020 F8 Swan
  • May 2020 Sky Charts

The start of April offers up an interesting stellar challenge, testing the observing dexterity of astronomers; casual or otherwise in a race against time.This is all about spotting first magnitude stars; those ranked brightest in the sky.

Piercing the spring twilight dotted around the sky, no less than thirteen of these are currently visible, more than at any other time of yearHowever the window of opportunity in which to identify these stellar jewels rapidly diminishes as we head deeper into April... [Read more about The Stellar Baker's Dozen Challenge]

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