Star gazing night sky is always amusing. We visited Dubbo Observatory where we can view the night sky with high-tech computerised telescopes. Peter Nielson at the location is very friendly and at the same time being knowledgeable and passing on all the astronomical stories and science.
Tour started at 8:30pm when the sky got dark. We have seen planets Venus and Jupiter which quickly disappeared into earth’s horizon.
Then we started watching the introductory movie related to astronomy and Nasa adventures whilst we wait for other interesting inhabitants to appear in the night sky. We loved the Morgan Freeman narrated bit which is based on facts, but got a bit sidelined and bored with NASA’s “astronauts feats in the space” clips as we have already watched various of these ones on discovery channel.
After the movie, its the show time! The distant inhabitants were out in the open sky to put on a show for us.
We observed Sirius, the brightest star in the night sky, with the high powered telescope, and then Orion Nebula. We couldn’t see some of the stars and constellations due to the Moon being the brightest in the sky.
Peter passed on a handy tip to us to identify a planet from a star. Stars twinkle and planets don’t. We were also told different facts and stories about the craters formed a a result of the asteroids collision with the earth.
We then watched Mars (where men are from :p) and the incredible craters on the Moon.
We finished off the evening with watching the Saturn and its rings. What a way to finish the tour. On a good night, depending upon the time and when Mr Moon is less powerful you can also see the international space station.
Other interesting things in the Sky during the night were Southern Cross and Orion Constellation. (Warrior with a sword and belt)
Overall this is a great, fun way of learning astronomy and we would highly recommend it for both adults and kids!
We took the photos with our Canon by peeping into the lens from the Telescope viewer. But you can also take as good pictures with your mobile camera too!
We then head back to our camping area and star gazed and dozed off under the starry sky!