Blog Wednesday 14th of March 2012
After leaving work early to give a most enjoyable astronomy talk to 80 year 5, 9 year old students at Ralph Sadlier School, Puckeridge, Herts for National Science and Engineering week. This was my 6th annual visit to do this for the children and I think this talk went the best so far. The staff also appeared to be excited by what they heard and saw during the hour I was presenting.
I left the school and droppedmy props, namely giant binoculars, PST solar scope and a few other bits back home and then headed off to do the weekly family shopping.
So by the time I returned home it was dark and I was pretty ‘bushed’ but a clear sky must be obeyed if at all possible so I motivated myself after 40 minutes or so harmonica practice to get the observatory open.
I was intent to bag a few more of the availible Hickson groups in the Leo region revisited one HCG that I had previously sketched using the old 14” this was HCG57 better known as the delightful Copelands Septet, I was delighted with the extra detail I was able to pull out in member galaxies (a) NGC 3753 appears split almost as if 2 galaxies, (b) NGC 3746 also showed quite considerable structure. A very exciting group see my sketch here.
I then caught 51 in Leo which is a tricky one with 6 faint members and I was getting a little confused identifying them. That takes my sketched tally to 34 she my sketch here.
I then moved on to HCG 61 the box in Coma, the view was poor as heavy fog was descending, I could have sketched all the components were there but I decided it was worth it I would rather go back and get extra detail. By the time I had scanned my sketches it was heading for 2am! I was going to pay the price the next day!
And so to bed