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RASC eNews

RASC eNews

The Winter Milky Way - Part 1


When someone utters the words Milky Way, we immediately associate the grand veil seen overhead during warm, mosquito ridden summer nights. At that time of year it is quite easy to trace out the collective glow of millions of suns stretching from the famous W of Cassiopeia the Queen in the north to Sagittarius the Archer in the south. To experience this marvellous sight under dark country skies is beyond words. Resting above the southern horizon is the nucleus or heart of our home galaxy.

The RASC has just launched a limited-run exclusive “vintage” t-shirt, featuring a centuries-old design from the Society’s rich archives. The striking image is an evocative invitation to an astronomical past which has shaped where we are today, and whose traces can still be seen in our science. The fascinating story behind the image can be found here.

Once again the Ottawa Centre will be streaming their monthly meeting live on Friday Dec 6 at 8 p.m. EST.  Just click on http://www.ustream.tv/channel/rascottawalive  Sign in with Facebook to chat live. Follow us on Twitter to get automatic notification.

Comet ISON’S Last Gasp

The last few days of November saw a combination of excitement and disappointment. It all began with fourteen months of hype and anticipation of how Comet ISON might perform on the November 28 showdown between fire and ice. Its path would take the comet through the upper atmosphere of the Sun – a mere 1.3 million kilometres above the hellish surface. As the hours ticked off on that faithful morning, ISON was in the home stretch of its solar rendezvous and was brightening to a healthy magnitude -1.

TORONTO, CANADA (November 15, 2013) – Will Comet ISON be the Comet of the Century???

The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (RASC),  the astronomical and scientific communities are eagerly anticipating Comet ISON’s appearance on November 28th.

Have you been hearing about Comet ISON on the news lately? How can you track what may be the comet of the century? Here is a guide from The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada including resource links to help you learn more and keep you up-to-date about Comet ISON.

 

Discovery:

Amateur astronomers Vitali Nevski and Artyom Novichonok spotted the comet in photographs taken by an ISON telescope in September 2012. The comet appeared unusually bright relative to its distance indicating that its nucleus may be between 1km and 10km across.

Toronto, Canada (October 31, 2013) – The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (RASC) is pleased to announce that young Canadian, Nathan Gray, age 10, has discovered a supernova in the field of the galaxy designated PGC 61330, which lies in the constellation of Draco (the dragon).

On Friday November 1 at 8 p.m. Eastern, the Ottawa Centre plans to broadcast its monthly Centre meeting from the Canada Science and Technology Museum live via the internet. Our two hour meeting consists of a few speakers and a photo gallery of images. This is the Centre’s first try at a live broadcast and we hope it’s a smooth ride. I would be interested on hearing your feedback. Come join the Ottawa Centre in this new avenue of public outreach..

What has been the buzz in the astronomical community for the past year is now in the home stretch. Discovered on Sept 21, 2012, Comet ISON was first though to be a daytime comet with an estimated magnitude -16, when it rounds the Sun at a very close distance on Nov 28. But recent observations now paint a slightly different picture. All comets are a bit of a mystery and seems to have a mind of their own - ISON is no different.

The RASC astrosketcher community is pleased to announce that the winner of the 2013 Summer Solstice to Autumn Equinox Contest is Gerry Smerchanski of the Winnipeg Centre! Gerry's award winning work is a depiction of the lunar crater Gassendi in all its stark glory. It can be found, along with the other quality entries, here. We wish to extend out congratulations to Gerry, and our thanks to all who participated.

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