Paper Plate Education
AstroCamp 2010 divided into two groups--morning and afternoon --that came together for viewing under the stars at night. AstroCamp emphasizes learning the constellations and using telescopes to find deep sky objects. The AstroCamp logs indicate a fantastic list of celestial objects were observed over several nights. A crowning sight was asymmetrical Jupiter. By day, water rockets flew high and fast.
Something else really cool was going on, but only a few who stayed up late got to see it.
In past years, AstroCampers have looked at Jupiter and have observed two dark belts encircling the planet. These are vast, turbulent clouds. The Southern Equatorial Belt harbors the Great Red Spot, itself many times larger than earth. Jupiter picture, left, is from previous AstroCamp.
In the spring of 2010, Jupiter emerged from behind the sun in the morning sky, and suddenly it was different. Jupiter's southern belt was gone. A weather system that could swallow the earth, and in a matter of months it had become visually absent. Jupiter picture, right, from 2010 AstroCamp.
Combined, before and after:
Astronomers await a "revival." See http://www.skyandtelescope.com/observing/highlights/94107139.html.
for more images
The pictures are also available in an AstroCamp 2010 slideshow (5:24), below:
Readings from behind Dave's House
*"Squims" are magnitudes per square arc-second
See images from other AstroCamp sessions linked from the Astrocamp Home Page.
Front row: Debra, Chuck, Linda, Steve, Darren.
Copyright ©2012 Chuck Bueter. All rights reserved.