Thursday, January 12, 2012
First Light Trial Public Narrow Band Viewing 1/12/11
Our day today was so mild and with a blue sky over head the views were bound to be good so lets do a short trial run with the public on the Lunt 60THA.
Saturday morning will have me at StarBucks doing a "Chromosphere, Crater & Coffee" outreach on their patio. You guessed it Solar and Moon in the morning and early afternoon! I want to be ready and get all the bugs out of my operation so today is the perfect time with the park lightly used but "lookers" still available. This was not a numbers outreach but a test run on using the scope, coaching folks at the scope, a general rehearsal for my spiel, and scope set up.
No resource table for the StarBucks events. Just the basics - outreach binder, Atlas Of The Universe, Solar System/Universe Scale Model, Jumbo Styro Ball (moon cycle), Solar Ball, Lunar Map, and handouts - lots of them!
I will start out with the morning moon (AT106) and then move into Solar when the Sun is at a good observing height. Later I hope to have another AstroTec ALT/AZ set up to have Solar Wedge & Ha at the same time.
Ha scopes can be tough to look through for one who has not had much (or any) scope time in their lives. When I was doing outreach for the non profit I had a Coronado Solar Max 40mm to use which was a nice scope! But with the narrow field of view and small "sweet spot" and ghosting a fair amount of folks had trouble seeing. How would the Lunt 60 do?
Jeff is one of the guards at the park and is a great supporter of my efforts. I so wanted him to be the first to view and I would value his opinion highly. Needless to say timing was great and he was treated to a whole array of different prom, spicuale, filament, facuale features. No trouble looking through this scope for him or any other person so inclined to stop. Jeff made detailed observes and was blown away. I will be using my Orion Stratus eyepieces - look at the large eyepiece lens, see the bright red ball(exit pupil) that's your window to the Sun! Every time complete beginners were lining up with Sol in the scope first time!
I saw some spicuales today that blew me away!
Joe was a first time observer and let me coach him at the scope for a good 20 minutes and was seeing changes in the Solar environment by the minute - first time!
The Scope Stuff Sun Shield is awesome! Look at that shadow on the observer with no glare to contend with!
All and all I am so pleased and stoked. The Lunt 60 tha (not because I own it) is better than expected. Flat field, no sweet spot, minimal ghosting, black black field of view, easy easy to look through, built like a tank with excellent finish!
What more can a SUG ask for? Well two things; clear sky and a horde of people to show the Sun off too!