An astronomical diversion


We haven’t had enough of these recently – there has been too much going on.

But my good friend Jamie Cooper, astrophotographer, has sent me this great picture today, and given me permission to put it up on the Soapbox.

He took it with a conventional off-the shelf DSLR camera using just a small refracting telescope.

I have messed with it slightly (apologies, Jamie !) to try to give the impression of what it is like to see Jupiter through a modest telescope – or good binoculars.

This was only 4 days ago.

Jupiter is absolutely impossible to miss if you are up late into the night, like I always am (it’s about 2.30 am right now as I write).

It’s a splendid sight – the brightest thing in the sky until the Moon rises .. and well worth a look with just our eyes. And even in the City ! Even in catastrophically light-polluted Kensington this is a sight to see in the night sky.

And here’s what you might see if you turn a small telescope towards it. You gotta !

Jupiter by Jamie Cooper
Jupiter and its principal moons, 11th September 2011 – photo by Jamie Cooper

The four small ‘stars’ in a line are Jupiter’s four giant Moons, discovered by Galileo – in order left to right … Callisto, Io, Europa & Ganymede.

Thanks Jamie.

Dr. Bri