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In this month: October

EVENTS 31st October 1992 Pope John Paul II pardons Galileo for his views. The Catholic church condemned Galileo in 1633 for his subversive views, namely that the Earth revolved around the Sun. He lived under house arrest for the rest of his life. Pope John Paul II formally apologized for the "Galileo Case" in the first of many famous apologies during his papacy. 11th October 1994 The Magellan spacecraft ( illustrated above by NASA/JPL) is intentionally crashed into the surface of Venus. During its four years in orbit the spacecraft mapped 98 percent of the surface and collected high- resolution data of Venus. The purpose of the crash landing was to gain data on the planet's atmosphere and on

Solar Observations: August 2019

Coronal Holes were observed at the end of July, beginning of August by Space Weather.com - these are shown in the image above from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, recorded using very sophisticated imaging equipment. However, through my telescope in the Southern Hemisphere the Sun appeared far less exciting and I observed it to be void of Flares, Filaments, Faculæ and Surges throughout the month. According to my observations the Sun continues to be very quiet as expected at this stage of the Solar Cycle. No observation was made on the 1st August due to bad weather and on the 2nd, 3rd, 13th, 15th, 16th &.17th no activity on the Sun could be seen at all. On the 4th & 5th only two very small

Stargazing and Amateur Astronomy Outreach by Members

In addition to the informative talks at our monthly meetings Sydney City Skywatchers (SCS) offers or assists at public sky viewings. Over the past couple of years members have taken their telescopes, binoculars and enthusiasm to astronomy events at Sydney Observatory and Centennial Parklands. Recent events have included a Sydney Observatory lunar eclipse event and Earth Hour events as well as Stars for Your Valentine, The Planets-Music and Science in the Park and Astronomy 101. Some might ask, “Why bother attending an astronomy viewing night under the light polluted skies of Sydney.” Well, while the light pollution is not ideal for some types of viewing it doesn’t prevent us from seeing the

Did you know?

This month Pluto…. Once our ninth planet Pluto was demoted to “dwarf planet’ in 2006. However, with the New Horizons mission enigmatic Pluto, once shrouded in mystery, is giving up its secrets. The image below is Pluto photographed by the LORRI and Ralph instruments aboard the New Horizons spacecraft in 2015. After Clyde Tombaugh’s discovery of Pluto astronomers rushed to their telescopes to see if they had also sighted the planet. More than a dozen images of Pluto from before the 1930 discovery have been found, but no one realised what they had seen! Some of the ashes of Clyde Tombaugh were flown onboard the New Horizons space probe that went to Pluto and beyond. When Pluto was demoted from

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