December 14, 2018

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In the Footsteps of Galileo

Originally published October 5, 2009 LPOD-Oct5-09.jpg
Bullialdus drawing by Erika Rix, Zanesville, Ohio

Deirdre Kelleghan likes to sketch astronomical objects, as do a number of current observers and as many people did before 30 years ago. To help celebrate the International Year of Astronomy Deirdre organized an exhibition of astronomy sketches at Ireland's Birr Castle, the home of Lord Rosse's large telescopes from the 1840s which were used to make the first drawing to show the spiral structure of galaxies. Erika Rix's classic study of Bullialdus is one of the lunar sketches included, as are Deirdre's copies of Galileo's drawings which inaugurated astronomical sketching, and previously unpublished drawings by Sir Patrick Moore. The exhibition opened on September 18th 2009 and runs till November 1, 2009 at Birr Castle, then it will be on show at Dunsink Observatory in Dublin during November. If Ireland isn't on your itinerary during the next two months, you may still be able to enjoy the exhibit for Deirdre is considering placing it online, And you can see Birr Castle and the opening of the exhibit here.

Chuck Wood

Technical Details
Erika's sketch was made 2008 November 12, 0100-0300UT. Lunation 9.95, Altitude +41 deg 25’, Azimuth +144 deg 51’, Position angle –22.0 deg. 10" LX200 Classic with diagonal, 8mm Televue Plossl,~312 magnification, no filters. Temp. 39F, Humidity 60%, Winds 5 mph, S 5/5, T 2/3 to 4/5. Sketch media: Rite in the Rain paper, charcoal.

Related Links
Rükl plate 53
Deirdre's web site

Yesterday's LPOD: Moon Wall

Tomorrow's LPOD: Who Wants To Drive?


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