From: TerryMosel@aol.com Date: Fri, 15 Mar 2002 16:27:36 EST Subject: RockyRoadShow, J Mason,+ Fireball Hi all, Two reminders: The Ulster Museum & Belfast Geologists Society are running the annual 'Rocky Road Show' at the Museum, Stranmillis Road, tomorrow & Sunday afternoons. (Sat 1-5, & Sun 2-5). It's mainly about rocks & fossils, but the IAA has been invited to put on an astronomical stand, with features on the other planets, comets, meteorites, etc, and we'll have a few telescopes to show the Sun if it's clear. Maybe the crescent Moon on Sunday too. So come along & see a great collection of meteorites & share ideas with thos who study particularly our OWN planet. 2. Don't forget the next IAA lecture is the Ronnie Ormonde Memorial Lecture: it's on Wed 20th, at 7.30 p.m., Lecture Room 5, Stranmillis College, as usual. It's by Dr John Mason, well-known author, lecturer & broadcaster. He's also a past President of the British Astronomical Association. The Title is "What If We Had No Moon?". Now take it from Uncle Terry that that is a VERY interesting topic, and that John is one of the most knowledgeable, entertaining & informative lecturers you'll ever hear, so DON'T MISS IT! Bring along some friends too - if they have any interest in the world around them, they won't be disappointed. Admission is free, but come early as there will be a good crowd, and places are limited Did anyone see a bright fireball on Wed, 13 Mar 2002? Prof Mark Bailey (Director, Armagh Observatory, reports as follows: "Bright meteor seen from about 1.5 miles East of Auchnacloy at about 19:54:30. Moved roughly from slightly north of East on a fairly steep, swift trajectory through Ursa Minor and Cassiopeia towards slightly south of West. Exploded in a shower of sparks, total magnitude about -6 to -8." And Dr Bill Napier, also from the Observatory, and his wife, also saw it! "I saw the fireball near Glaslough [Co Monaghan], from my car. I agree Mark's estimates of magnitude and background constellations (although there may have been 20 km between us at the time of observation). To me it had a distinctly greenish hue (this was also Nancy's impression). I'd have described the motion as "slow"; and the trajectory as shallow, with an appreciable curvature." If there are any other observations of this, please let me know! Comet Ikeya-Zhang is now about 4th magnitude, and still brightening as it heads North through Pisces towards Beta Andromedae, which it will pass very closely on 30 March. It has a tail several degrees long, easily visible in any binocs. Catch it over the next few days before the Moon gets too bright. Tonight it's just W of Eta Piscium, mag 3.6. Tomorrow evening (Sat) it will be 12 degrees NNW of the crescent moon - that's about 2 - 3 binocular fields of view apart. Finally, following requests from some members to save them paper & ink, I'm cutting out the full copy address list on these emails! I hope everyone still gets their copies! Terry.
Last Revised: 2002 March 15th
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