Category Archives: Science

Comet Neowise was visible in July

Comet C/2020 F3 (NEOWISE) is a long period comet with a near parabolic orbit discovered on March 27th 2020 by astronomers using the Near Earth Orbit Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer space telescope. It survived its fly by the sun and could be seen in July – clouds permitting! We managed faint sightings on 3 nights and also saw noctilucent clouds beyond Perth.

Also posted in Astronomy, Skies Tagged , |


In the small hours of 21st January 2019 there was a total eclipse of the moon visible from where I live, weather permitting! It was forecast to be cloudy so I didn’t stay up but set an alarm for just before the greatest totality at 5.12am and then woke anyway. There was an eerie orange glow in the sky, no moon visible and then I saw it looking like a copper coloured planet, not the bright shining disc we normally see. An arresting sight. It had to be photographed but it was so dark: 30 seconds exposure as wide as my lens would open at ISO 100 – useless because of motion blur due to the relative movement of the moon and the earth. The ISO had to go up to 1000 to give a reasonably sharp but grainy image. I got a couple of pictures and hoped to do a sequence every 10 minutes until the eclipse ended – but clouds intervened. I almost gave up then the clouds partially parted and eventually I managed a reasonable sequence until just before the end of the eclipse when the moon disappeared behind thick cloud. I was groggy the next day and slow to function but it was worth it!

Also posted in Clouds, Photography, Skies, Uncategorized, Weather Tagged , , |


A couple of weeks ago I was able to visit the permanent exhibitions at CERN, The European Organisation for Nuclear Research, which is just outside Geneva. As well as being very informative the exbitions are very stylish and captivate their audience. ‘Universe of Particles’ is in the Globe of Science and Innovation, a largely wooden dome which is an emblem of CERN. ‘Microcosm’ across the road shows the work and history of CERN and includes a garden exhibiting old equipment as sculptures. It was uplifting to see the international co-operation involved. If only the whole world could be so positive.

Also posted in Travel