Dark Sky Places

In this post I will talk about the work of the International Dark-Sky Association (https://www.darksky.org/)and the visit I made a few years ago to the Kielder Observatory, which is in the Northumberland Dark Sky park in northern  England. The International Dark-Sky Association (IDA) was founded in 1988 by David Crawford a professional astronomer, who spent… Continue reading Dark Sky Places

Staying on the Moon

Until the outbreak of the global pandemic there was a good chance that mankind would return to the Moon in the next ten years, even if the deadline of project Artemis to have a manned mission in 2024 was a little ambitious. It will be some time before the effects of the current crisis on… Continue reading Staying on the Moon

The Brightness of Venus

Anyone, even the most casual observer,  looking at  the evening sky in the last month will have noticed the brilliant white planet Venus shining in the west. Often known as the Evening Star, Venus is the third brightest natural object in the sky after the Sun and the Moon. In this post I’ll talk about… Continue reading The Brightness of Venus

Measuring and Mapping Light Pollution

As discussed in a previous post , light pollution is a major nuisance to astronomers both amateur and professional. When astronomers classify how much light pollution there is at a particular location, they often use the Bortle Scale, devised by John Bortle and first published in the popular astronomy magazine Sky and Telescope (Bortle 2001). Rather… Continue reading Measuring and Mapping Light Pollution

British coverage of Apollo 11

Last year as all my readers will know was the fiftieth anniversary of the first Apollo Moon landing. Image credit NASA Although the pictures and video from the Apollo 11 mission, including Neil Armstrong’s first steps on the Moon, are famous throughout the world and are freely available on platforms such as YouTube, it is… Continue reading British coverage of Apollo 11