Palo Alto Colloquia
December 5, 2013
COMETS AND ISONS
Mr. Greg Edwards
In this talk we will look at what comets are, why they are interesting, some famous comets and various trips to comets. New comets give us an idea of the materials that the Earth, Sun, Moon, Mars, Jupiter, etc. are made of. Not yet been warmed by the sun, first time comets contain gases and solids that have been in deep freeze since the solar system was formed billions of years ago. Observing new comets is a great opportunity to better understand where our solar system came from.
We will also discuss photographing comets: Camera, tripods/other mounts, exposure time, aperture, ISO, post-processing, etc. If you have good photos please send your best to email@example.com and we will try to use them on 5 December. If you want hints on taking better photos of the comet:
1.Digital cameras that came out in 2012/13 have much better low light sensors than those that
came out 3 to 4 years ago, and those are much better than cameras that are five or more years old.
2.Use a tripod, a fast lens, focus at infinity, a high ISO and follow the Rule of 500 for setting your
exposure (I prefer using a much shorter exposure or using a barn door tracker).
3.Even better, visit your local telescope store or build/buy a barn door tracker:
Note that the San Jose Astrononomical Assiociation is excellent and has dozens of telescopes to loan
4.Practice. Your best pictures will come after a number of practice sessions
5.Post Processing. To reduce noise I like to use Nik Dfine 2.0. See what works for you. But practice.
Greg Edwards is a retired information security engineer now exploring photography, who has long had an interest in astronomy and geology. Mr. Edwards holds a degree in Physics from University of California, Davis. He taught InfoSec for 8 years through UCSC Extension in addition to many other classes through other institutions. He holds numerous InfoSec certifications and still teaches for the Silicon Valley ISSA and ISACA.
Attention: Beginning this fall, the new Colloquia series will temporarily be held at a new location: The Solar and Astrophysics Conf. Rm., Bldg. 252. The Bldg. 252 conference room is on the Second Floor, Rm. 202, opposite the elevators. Enter the lobby and a guard will allow you access to the elevators. It is recommended that colloquium attendees park in the B255 parking lot. Click on the street address (above in blue) to bring up a detailed map.
With this new location there are security constraints, so there is no guaranteed access to the Conference Room for late arrivals. Additionally, we may not be able to guarantee live broadcast of the presentation during this time.
The following dates are TENTATIVE:
Nov. 28 – NO COLLOQUIUM, Thanksgiving
Dec. 5 – Mr. Greg Edwards. COMETS AND ISONS
Dec. 12 – NO COLLOQUIUM
Dec. 19 – NO COLLOQUIUM
Dec. 26 – NO COLLOQUIUM, Christmas
Jan. 2 – NO COLLOQUIUM, New Years
Jan. 9 - Dr. Alex Cannara, Cannara Consulting: UPDATED: IONIZING RADIATION AND HEALTH
Jan. 16 - Dr. Alex Cannara, Cannara Consulting: UPDATED: MOLTEN SALT AND THORIUM NUCLEAR POWER (MSR)
Jan. 23 - Dr. Alex Cannara, Cannara Consulting: UPDATED: PART 1 OF 2: CLIMATE AND ENERGY BASICS – WHAT’S MISSING IN THE MEDIA
Jan. 30 - Dr. Alex Cannara, Cannara Consulting: UPDATED: PART 2 OF 2: ENERGY DEMAND & SUPPLY — COMPARING OUR OPTIONS & TAKING ACTION
Feb. 6 – Dr. Joy C. Andrews (Hayter), SSRL, SLAC: x-ray microscopy with application to catalysis
Feb. 13 –
Feb. 20 – Dr. Ken Washington, LM/ATC: Demystifying the Advanced Technology Center
Feb. 27 –
Mar. 6 – Dr. Chao-Lin Kuo, Stanford Physics and SLAC. South Pole Research
Mar. 13 – Dr. Clyde Smith, SLAC: Anti-biotic resistance
Mar. 20 –
Mar. 27 –
Apr. 3 –
Apr. 10 – Dr. Jennifer Dionne, Stanford Univ: Metamaterials and Bioimaging.
Apr. 17 –
Apr. 24 – Dr. Tom Passell, former ATC employee and recently retired from SRI and EPRI: Evidence for The Oppenheimer-Phillips (deuteron-stripping) Reaction with atoms of the absorbing metal as the Nuclear Reaction Source of the Excess Heat Episodes in Deuterium loaded metals.