Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Astronomy Scrapbook Wednesday 11th December 2013

Eye in the Sky (1)
December 11th 2013



At about 22.10UT the moon will occult the 4th magnitude star Epsilon Pisces, the star will re appear at about 22.17UT ( time varies with location)

Eye in the Sky (2)
December 11th 2013



The Sigma Hydrids meteor shower which is active between December 4th and 15th will reach maximum tonight. The  shower should produce 5 meteors per hour.

Eye in the Sky (3)
December 11th 2013


The December Monocerotids have a long active period between November 9th until December 18th. They peak on December 11th. Only about 2 meteors per hour will be seen. The meteor shower appears to be connected to comet Mellish 1917 I.

However the December Monocerotids might be  able to solve an astronomy riddle. Between 1038 until 1099 AD a number of very bright meteors and fireballs were observed. It is possible that although very weak now the Monocerotids was a very spectacular shower but that due to planetary gravitational effects from the 4 gas giants the stream has changed positioned. These same changes could bring the Monocerotids back again in about 1,000 years time.

On This Day
December 11th 1863



Annie Jump Cannon was born, the daughter of shipbuilder and state senator Wilson Lee Cannon and his second wife, Mary Elizabeth Jump, Cannon grew up in Dover, Delaware she was instrumental in the development of the Harvard Classification Scheme for stars. The HR diagram classification of stars OBAFGM is based on her work.

Her observation of stars and stellar spectra was extraordinary. Her Draper Catalogue listed nearly 230,000 stars, all the work of a single observer. Cannon also published other catalogues of variable stars, including 300 that she personally discovered. Her career lasted more than 40 years, during which time women gained acceptance within the scientific community. She was the first woman to be elected as an officer of the American Astronomical Society.

She was also the only single female to win the Henry Draper Medal from the National Academy of Sciences in 1931.

Annie Jump Cannon died April 13, 1941.

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