Tales from THE EYEPIECE
Stories and strange tales from the world of amateur astronomy by Jonathan Powell
For my astronomy O-level, I chose to study, sketch, and evaluate the Moon’s Mare Crisium. Sitting on the northeast lunar limb, it’s easily discernible with the naked eye. With the encouragement of the late Peter Grego, then head of the Lunar Section at the Junior Astronomical Society, I set about capturing the Sea of Crises. However, it wasn’t my 2.4-inch telescope on wobbly wooden legs that thwarted me, nor was it the lack of an electric drive on said wobbly scope. No, it was the vast underestimation of the time involved. As the Moon waxed and waned, I was not prepared for how night after night, the most subtle of changes occurred, as the Sun’s light captured the same landscape but from a different angle. Capturing these changes took time – many Moons, in fact.
Jonathan Powell is the astronomy correspondent for the South Wales Argus