Tähtipäivät will be organized in Turku 19.-20.3.2011

Astronomy and amateur astronomy will be in highlight in Turku during this weekend. Event called Tähtipäivät (Literally “Star days”) will be organized in Turku, Finland. The event will be organized by Turun Ursa, which is the local astronomy club in Turku. The event hot spot will be in the building of University of Turku. There will be several lectures for audience (by some leading astronomers in Finland) and also the amateur astronomy hobby scene in Finland will be highlighted. Also the Deep sky -section of Ursa will be attending this event. Me and Linda Laakso will be there presenting Deep sky section and demonstrating observing of deep sky objects.


Two faint aurora displays

10.3.2011 at 20.45 I saw some aurora belt in northern sky at low altitude, but there was too much clouds that it was practically impossible to do any good observation.

Date: 10.3.2011
Time: 20.45
Observing place: Sodankylä
SQM: –
Weather: Mostly cloudy sky, high- and low clouds, windy, -4 °C

Upper limit for the aurorae: ~30°
Condition: –
Quality: –
Structure: –
Shape: B, band
Brightness: 2 (range from 0 to 4)
Colour class: c (white/green/yellow)

13.3.2011 in the evening I saw some belt -type aurorae with some rays in the northern sky. Sky was clear, but 50% moon was shining high in the southern sky, and sky wasn’t completely dark. The aurora display was relatively faint.

Here is the detailed info for the display:

Date: 13.3.2011
Time: 20.00-20.40
Observing place: Sodankylä
NELM: 4,3
SQM: –
Weather: clear sky, -14 °C

Upper limit for the aurorae: ~60°
Condition: a3, rays are moving rapidly along the belt
Quality: –
Structure: R1, rays, short rays, that are disappearing fast
Shape: B, band
Brightness: 2 (range from 0 to 4)
Colour class: c (white/green/yellow)

Here under the Polaris and first aurorae in six years!

Since the beginning of this month, I have been in Sodankylä in Lappland, Northern Finland. I came here to work, but luckily I also have some freetime for amateur astronomy. I will be here until the end of september, but nevertheless I will do some short trips to southern Finland also during this time.

Currently I don’t have any telescope here with me, but I’m doing observations of weather everyday and I’m also doing some observations of celestial phenomenae with naked eye. Nevertheless, I’m planning to take some telescope here or buy a new one, perhaps some suitable lens scope to observe objects of our Solar system and other objects.

Sun has been getting more active during this year, and that is causing aurorae borealis more frequently. 7.3.2011 I managed to see my first aurorae in six years! During that night, there was a magnificent aurorae show in the sky, it was a complex and rapidly changing band -type display! There was a bright band almost in the zenith and other band at lower altitude in northern sky. The band straight ahead was complexly striated, and those striations moved rapidly along the band. The display was also very bright, but still their color was white/pale green.

Here are the specs for the show:

Date: 7.3.2011
Time: 21.24-21.50
Observing place: Sodankylä
NELM: 4,4
SQM: ~19,12
Weather: clear sky, -2 °C

Upper limit for the aurorae: 130° (southernmost aurorae around Auriga)
Condition: a1, a2, active, striations moving rapidly along the band, band moving and changing its shape rapidly
Quality: C, coronary
Structure: S, striated
Shape: B, band
Brightness: 3 (range from 0 to 4)
Colour class: c (white/green/yellow)