Occultation Section


Firstly you may ask, well what is an occultation?

Firstly welcome to the Occultations section of our site, this is a new area of observation for our Society and so there will not be much material found in this part of the site yet, but keep watching as it will hopefully grow.

Basically it is the blockage of light by the intervention of another object e.g. the Moon can occult (block) the light from a distant star, thus resulting in the star disappearing behind the Moon (so is similar to a solar eclipse).

Want more information?

http://www.popastro.com/sections/occ.htm - a very useful website for all things of the occult (in terms of Astronomy!)

http://www.lunar-occultations.com - has timings of occultations (by the Moon) and basic information

Observations made by us

Wednesday 14th January 01:00 to 03:00

Well it started great, lots to be optimistic about as there was not a cloud in the sky (however I had noticed that a band might come over at 3am), and we managed to fix the telescope on the position of Porrima (Gamma Virginis, ZC 1821) as it disappeared behind the Moon. This alone was quite an achievement however the clouds did come and spoil our otherwise interesting night.

We were not the only people observing this though, in Scarborough, North Yorkshire, UK (Geographical co-ordinates: N 54* 16' 30.4", W 000* 25' 05.5" Alt: 50m (Datum:WGS84)) Jon Harper of the Society for Popular Astronomy Occultation Section managed to get a great view of this and has kindly agreed to letting us use his photograph of this (see below: for a larger view just click on the image)

To do this he was using: Telescope 9" Newtonian reflector (f 6) + 25mm Orthoscopic eyepiece, Alt/Az mount, Camera: Hand held IXUS300. The image was taken at 03h 07m UT.

He also managed to get the emersion timings of the event:

1st component: 02h 57m 14.42s UT
2nd component: 02h 57m 15.68s UT
Step time: 01.26s mag(V) increase 0.6/0.7




This site is maintained by Alexandra Yannacopoulou, Communications Officer. Site originally designed by Emma Robinson.

Last updated: 16/06/2004

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