AstroNotes 2021 July Vol: 60 issue 07

Editor’s Message . President’s Message . Ottawa Skies . The Ottawa Observatory . Eclipse 2021 . Monthly Challenge Objects . Submitted Images . Members in the News . Announcements . Carp Star Parties . FLO Star Parties . Next Meeting . Centre Information



Download PDF version: 

Editor’s Message

Plans are well underway for the FLO 50th Anniversary Event to be held September 11. This will be an all-day event starting workshops, guest speakers, a telescope clinic, tee shirts, hoodies, a barbeque, an observing challenge and, of course, a star party. The details will be announced at the August meeting and in the August issue of AstroNotes. With COVID infections dropping and vaccinations rising the lockdowns and restrictions are gradually being lifted. Within a week of writing this we will be able to have 100 people at outdoor events. That is about all we could handle at the FLO anyways, so we should be fine. And by September, who knows? The sky may be the limit!

This issue features the seventh and last of Rick Scholes fabulous series of articles looking at the history of the FLO through the logbooks. We have an observatory with a rich history. It is a facility that has grown and expanded over the years. With the completion of the additions underway we will have an even better facility for member no matter their observing goals or interests. Rick has done a great job of sharing that history with us. Thank you, Rick.

This issue is also packed with images submitted by members. Of the 48 pages, more than 20 pages are member observations. Please, keep those images coming! A member profile planned for this month has been rescheduled for August. And of course, we have all our regular features as well as a message from our President, Stephen Nourse.

I will be away next month so Doug Fleming will be looking after the Editorial affairs in the luxurious AstroNotes offices. If you have something to submit, please try to send in before July 27 as I leave on the 28th and I am not sure what kind of internet connection I will have where we are camping, and I would hate for me to miss being able to forward something to Doug.

See you in September!

Clear skies and stay safe,


President’s Message

Hello Everyone,

It’s hard to believe that we are already halfway through 2021. The good news of course being that COVID-19 vaccination rates are climbing, and infection rates are falling. Assuming the Delta variant stays in check those of us fully vaccinated can soon look forward to resuming some of the astronomical activities that we love with others. Certainly, how we want to potentially move forward with Centre activities will be on the agenda at our July 15 council meeting. If you have any thoughts on the subject, please let me or any of the council members know about them.

I would like to give a big shout out to everyone involved in the Virtual Astronomy Day events held on May 15. I won’t try and name everyone, as I am sure to miss at least one of the many contributors. By all accounts this joint event with the Ottawa Valley Astronomy & Observers Group was a great success thanks to your hard work and dedication. Let’s hope next year’s event can go back to being in person, although given the reach the virtual platform provides us it may have to play some role moving forward.

If anyone would like to become more involved with the Ottawa Centre Council, we have an opportunity for you. David Parfett, who has so wonderfully been serving as our Treasurer has, unfortunately for us, accepted a job opportunity in Winnipeg. Although David has generously offered to continue virtually from there until such time as we can find a replacement, it is obviously preferable to have someone local. The centre’s finances are thankfully relatively simple so anyone who has even a basic knowledge of accounting should be fine. We now fully use QuickBooks as well making it even more use friendly. If you are interested or want more information about the position, please contact either me or Chris Teron our Centre Secretary. I am sure you will find it rewarding.

We were approached earlier in the year by the Ottawa Public Library to assist them with their telescope loan program by doing some familiarization videos of their specific equipment. Paul Sadler started this project on behalf of the Centre. Unfortunately, between COVID restrictions and then life getting in the way he is no longer in a position to complete it. Paul has a significant amount of the prep work done and we just need someone to take and assemble the actual videos. If you have any interest and/or talent in this area we would love to hear from you. This is a great opportunity to help out new astronomers and at the same time promote the Centre. Please contact me for more information.

And finally, if you are the type of person that just likes to build stuff – stay tuned. With the easing of COVID restrictions we are looking to finally get the Rolf Meier dome and telescope up and running at FLO, likely starting in August. If you like to play with concrete, frame a door, or figure out how to fit a dome do we have a deal for you! Rick Scholes, our FLO director, will have more details in the coming weeks.

It really is true that you get more out of your membership when you participate. Chances are you will end up with new lifelong friends and personal satisfaction. I urge you to consider one, or all, of the above opportunities to become more involved in your Centre.

Stay safe and clear skies,

Stephen Nourse
President, Ottawa Centre

Ottawa Skies

By David Chisholm

Full Moon July 24th -The Moon will be located on the opposite side of the Earth as the Sun and its face will be fully illuminated. This phase occurs at 02:37 UTC. This full moon was known by early Native American tribes as the Buck Moon because the male buck deer would begin to grow their new antlers at this time of year. This moon has also been known as the Thunder Moon and the Hay Moon.

French astronomer Jean Louis Pons discovered this comet in June 1819, which was then rediscovered in March 1858 by German astronomer Friedrich Winnecke. Comet 7P/Pons-Winnecke belongs to the Jupiter family of comets, short-period (6.4 years) comets with orbits primarily determined by Jupiter.

The Delta Aquarids is an average shower that can produce up to 20 meteors per hour at its peak. It is produced by debris left behind by comets Marsden and Kracht. The shower runs annually from July 12 to August 23. It peaks this year on the night of July 28 and morning of July 29. The nearly full moon will be a problem this year. Its glare will block most of the faintest meteors. But if you are patient, you should still be able to catch a few good ones. Best viewing will be from a dark location after midnight. Meteors will radiate from the constellation Aquarius but can appear anywhere in the sky.



July 4 - Mercury at Greatest Western Elongation. above the horizon in the morning sky. Look for the planet low in the eastern sky just before sunrise.



Visible in the evening.

Rise/Set 07:25/22:24 -> 08:42/21:52



Visible in the evening.

Rise/Set 08:04/22:41 -> 07:47/21:28



Visible evening and through night.

Rise/Set 23:27/09:51 -> 21:24/07:40


Visible evening and through night.

Rise/Set 22:37/09:51 -> 20:33/05:57



Visible before sunrise.

Rise/Set 02:04/16:13 -> 00:08/14:19



Visible before sunrise

Rise/Set 00:16/11:43 -> 22:14/09:43

The Ottawa Centre Observatory:

A History – by Rick Scholes

Book 7: The Fred Lossing Observatory turns Fifty (2019-2021)

The year 2021 is the 50th anniversary of the Ottawa Centre Observatory, located on MVCA grounds near the Mill of Kintail on the Indian River, near Almonte, Ontario. This history summarizes the observatory logbook highlights, which are presented in chronological order, and have been cherry- picked for their interest, significance, or humour. Additional information from a source other than the logbook has occasionally been inserted in [square brackets].

This month it is exactly 50 years since the day in July 1971 when Ottawa Centre observers saw first light in their new custom-built 16” telescope from the original North Mountain site. Both the site and the telescope have changed since then. The bones of the clubhouse are original, as is the observatory roll-off roof. The desk and swivel chair in the clubhouse also date to 1971, but other than that, it is largely memories and photographs that remain. And the logbooks!

Logbook 7 is only a fraction filled so far, about 12 pages. Many empty pages are waiting to receive the experiences of future FLO observers. Through most of this period we have been encumbered by the worldwide pandemic, which has closed or restricted the site use for significant durations. The pandemic has also delayed the final setup and commissioning of the SkyShed Pod / Meade and the Meier Dome / Refractor facilities.

Thanks to Chris Teron and Taras Rybarskyi for providing their photographs, and especially Astronotes Editor Gordon Webster for his encouragement and support for this project.

Before the Pandemic

Book 7 begins in July 2019. Jupiter and Saturn were prominent summer objects. The 18” Starmaster continued to exhibit quirks with the azimuth drive motion and battery performance. (As currently configured the DOB mount can only be powered by a 12V battery in the base, not by mains power.)

An August Star Party organized by Gordon Webster was well attended by “about 25 people.” Dave Lauzon commented, “MANY new faces!” Always a good sign, that. In September Dave decided to step away from the co-director role in order to focus on other commitments, leaving me as sole director. My thanks to Dave for his support and teamwork during our two years sharing the job.

Two names from the past, Doug Luoma and Anthony Dore, returned for September visits, noting, “First time out in years! I like the upgrades. Amazed at how the trees and bushes have encroached on the hill!” Regulars Taras Rabarskyi and Konstantin Popov were using the 18” for visual observations while imaging with their own gear, often joined by Andrew Brown and his imaging gear, and often Dan Vasiu at the 18”.

In October 2019 the Meier dome was brought on site and placed in two pieces on the north mound for the winter. This dome was built by Rolf Meier as one of his home observatories. It was donated to me by his widow Linda and in turn by me to RASC Ottawa, along with Rolf’s 6” Astrophysics refactor. Together, the 18” DOB for visual, the 14” Meade SCT in the Skyshed Pod for photography, and the 6” Astrophysics ‘planet killer’ will give FLO an excellent complement of observing instruments.


Meier dome arriving in two pieces, by flatbed, October 2019 (photo: R. Scholes)

There was heavy snow that winter. [Plowing was done regularly by Allen Toshack. Due to the amount of snow fall costs were high, $800.] Site use was irregular, low in December and January but moderate in February, just before the world changed.

The Pandemic

In mid-March 2020, as we all know, the Covid-19 pandemic arrived in Ontario like a … a power failure. Council closed the observatory for the balance of March, April and May in order to comply with the recommendations of government and public health authorities. The only site visits were for maintenance and grass mowing. As the first wave of the pandemic subsided in June, FLO was reopened with restricted numbers and face mask requirements. Due to low demand, only one training session was conducted, with physical distancing and masks.

Restrictions were in place when the observatory was able to be open in 2020 & 2021 (photo: R. Scholes)

[In early 2020 we were able to complete the process of renewing our five-year lease with the MVCA.] More site improvements were then led by Chris Teron in July, including the addition of gravel to muddy portions of the access lane, the expansion of the south mound to more than double its size, and the removal of some trees and bushes around the south mound.

Access lane improvements, July 2020 (photos: R. Scholes)


Expansion of the south observing mound with fill & topsoil, July 2020 (photos: R. Scholes)


Aerial view showing expanded south mound & north mound with new structures (photo: Chris Teron)

Slow Gains, Fine Views

Site usage picked up gradually beginning in mid-July 2020. Comet Neowise, Jupiter, Saturn, and the Perseids all put on fine shows. Mars was approaching opposition that fall. In September, Konstantin Popov wrote, “View of Mars in 18” at 310x has been simply stunning, with tremendous details, multiple dark lines ... and beautiful polar cap. I will remember it for a long time.”

Star Parties resumed in September, October, and November, albeit with limited attendance. The limit varied from 5 to 15, changing in step with the recommendations from public health. The fall of 2020 provided some clear skies for visual observing and imaging by the usual suspects. I was able to do some outreach and training to small numbers of people.

The favourable opposition of Mars in October 2020 was photographed by Taras Rybarskyi using the 18” Starmaster, with a barlow lens at prime focus (approximately 665x). If you need any convincing about the quality of our telescope optics, look no further than his photo sequence in the figure below.


Mars near opposition in 2020 captured with the FLO 18” Starmaster (photos: Taras Rybarskyi)


In October the 18” tracking problems were finally resolved properly by replacing the entire azimuth bearing surface with a new slab of fiberglass reinforced panel (FRP). This surface will require regular replacement, perhaps every couple of years. Wear and tear add up quickly on a telescope used by a dozen or more key holders, new trainees, and members conducting outreach sessions. Other maintenance and upgrades included tightening of the azimuth axle bushing, installing a new “smart charger” for the 12V batteries, and re-introducing an illuminated reticle eyepiece to improve star alignment.

If A Tree Falls ...

One November day I arrived to find two trees, both with 6” diameter trunks, had fallen across the access lane. If you don’t wish to walk in, it’s always a good idea to bring a tree saw, and, in wintertime, deicer for the gate lock. High winds brought down a number of trees that fall. Our landlords, the MVCA, did some trimming and pruning along the lane and the power line corridor later in December.

The close conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn in December was observed from FLO with personal telescopes – the trees to the west of the observing mound blocked the view from the 18” observatory. [Some of these trees were removed by the MVCA in May 2021.]

In January 2021 Taras and Konstantin Popov began a quest to view the Horsehead Nebula visually. Really it had been spotted with no filters back in 1994 by Glenn LeDrew and company, as described in my previous article covering Logbook 5. On 4 February, Taras reported, “Used 18” Starmaster to observe Horsehead Nebula with H-Beta filter. SUCCESS!” Konstatin corroborated. My older eyes think they saw it.

Brian Lavergne assisted with snow clearing throughout the winter and also donated an electric snow thrower to help clear the mound. Our plowing contractor only clears the lane and parking lot. It is the director and volunteer helpers who must shovel the pathways, mound, and also the observatory roof (a heavy snow load would make it difficult to roll off).

Brian & Marcelle Lavergne clearing roofs, path, & observing mound, February 2021 (photo: R. Scholes)

Meanwhile, the pandemic restrictions continued to oscillate. [The ‘second wave” arrived after Christmas and a larger ‘third wave’ in early April, the latter forcing another provincial lockdown and closure of the FLO for another 8 weeks.] I took this opportunity to compete the fencing around the extension of the south mound. At our request the MVCA cleared two of the trees obstructing the western view.

Expanded and fenced south mound, looking west, June 2021 (photo: R. Scholes)

As of this writing we have cautiously reopened FLO with some limits and restrictions. The rapid progress of vaccinations through the population allows us to resume monthly star parties, training, and site upgrades. With volunteer help and some luck, the setup and commissioning of the 14” Meade SCT and Meier 6” refractor should resume and finish later this year. These exciting upgrades will be a very fitting way to launch FLO into its next era. Planning for a 50th anniversary celebration in the fall is underway. We sincerely hope this celebration will take place on site and in person!

Endpiece - The next 50 years

I frequently enjoy flipping through the logbook pages and sensing the wonder of those who have observed there. Indeed, it’s what gave me the idea for these articles. There has always been camaraderie and shared enthusiasm for whatever was on offer: planets, comets, galaxies, meteors, satellites, aurora, eclipses, or maybe just learning a faint constellation. The simple joy of just gazing up at the night sky is something we can all share.

This journey has revealed many surprises: the wildly popular ‘Star Nites’ in the 1970s; the eventful move from North Mountain in 1977; the original open fields at the Mill of Kintail Conservation Area; the radio telescope successes of the 1980s; so much aurora in the 1990s; the various break-ins and vandalism in the 2000’s; stories of overnight stays, and members traveling in by foot on snowy winter nights; members coming out to enjoy the site and staying even though it was cloudy or raining.

Enormous respect is owed to the outreach specialists (Doug George, Pat Browne, and Al Seaman were prominent) who spent so many hours of their time showing the universe to outing clubs, school groups, cub packs, neighbours, friends, and strangers who tagged along. This is such an important part of what RASC does and nowhere is it more evident than in the observatory logbook pages.

The telescope trainers (Glen LeDrew, Hilderic and Pat Browne, Al Seaman, Ron St. Martin) are another important group which is an essential part of the smooth functioning of the club telescopes offered to its members by the Ottawa Centre since 1971.

I salute all those involved with running our observatory over its 50 years of existence. It is a shared resource we can all be proud of and grateful for. It has been truly a team effort to plan it, maintain it, and grow it. There were those who toiled tirelessly for years, like Robin Molson and Al Seaman. But the smooth functioning owes a debt to the countless others who came to mow, shovel, paint, fix, and build.

The five comet discoveries made at IRO/FLO will forever be standout moments in our history. But if you have observed at FLO and left your impressions, you too are a part of the story. We can only dream of what the next 50 years will bring.

Eclipse 2021

June 10, 2021, Solar Eclipse

Robert Dick

For some reason this event “crept up on me”, for which I feel ashamed. As an eclipse chaser from way-back-when, I should have had this marked on my calendar in bold letters. Fortunately, it didn’t need any planning.

I had two observing sites in mind: the deck of my observatory near Rideau Ferry that gives a nice eastern horizon and Carlington Park in Ottawa. For those unfamiliar with this park, it’s a grassy field on top of a very large water reservoir between Maitland and Kirkwood, Carling and Baseline roads. Don’t try to imagine what you are standing on or it may make you nervous. Usually, it is used for walking dogs, morning and evening jogging, and in this case - astronomy.

The Park overlooks the city, but the multitude of trees tends to limit the glare from the city lights – somewhat. Unfortunately, there are trees on the hillside around the park, so you have to pick a place where you can look between the trees if you want to see to the horizon.

My son Jonathan was interested in seeing the eclipse, so I chose the Park instead of my observatory.

Set-up was simple: cameras, telephoto lenses and tripods. These had to be carried up the very steep paths that lead from the surrounding pathways up to the top surface. Fine if you are young and agile, but precarious for a senior citizen. We were not alone – but almost. There was less than a dozen people – some with eclipse viewing glasses (metal foil in cardboard frames), there was another couple with a camera, and three people bearing a colander with holes to get the pinhole camera effect. Sadly, the perforations were too close together. I showed them how to make a very crude pinhole with your fingers that at least gave a hint of a crescent.

Jonathan and I set up our tripods behind the visual observers so as not to mar their experience. We used small pieces of Baada filter material over our lenses, which produced white solar images. I started with my 400 mm f/6.3 lens and Jonathan had his 200 mm lens. We swapped lenses halfway through the eclipse. I used an ancient Canon T2i that I bought “used” when Jonathan bought his Sony 7 S2.


A t sunrise, the partially eclipsed Sun shone through clear sky, but it soon rose into the bands of thin cloud about a degree above the horizon. This produced interesting effects and added the “terrestrial connection” – even a Sun pillar.

Maximum eclipse arrived “on time” at 05:40. But the low 3-degree altitude did not help the seeing, nor did looking over the city’s heat island. The images clearly show the rippling structures around the solar and lunar limbs. The optical properties of the cloud bands changed the “structure” of these ripples. I couldn’t see any sunspots through my camera, but I did record a hazy patch in a few images when the seeing was good enough to not completely washout surface detail – or it was a cloud fragment.

I rate this effort as a success. The minimal planning effort, 5-minute travel time, virtually zero cost and experiencing it in a quiet setting with a few friends and family was a pleasant experience and makes a good memory.

Jonathan and I are looking forward to the 2024 total eclipse. The options range from a carefully planned expedition into the USA (4-min 26-sec), or a pleasant afternoon drive down Hwy 416 (about 2 min 20 sec.) ( Since it will occur at roughly 3:25 EDT, the Sun will be a comfortable 45-degrees above the horizon – it won’t even hurt my neck.

Monthly Challenge Objects

By Oscar Echeverri

Submitted Images

Stephen Nourse

Stephen Nourse

Jim Sofia

Jim Sofia

Jim Sofia

Calvin Klatt

A few images that may be of interest…

These are wide-field images shot from the La Peche region on the evening of June 19 and the wee hours of June 20.  They are roughly 40 degrees by 30 degrees.

I used a newly purchased Canon EF-S 24mm f/2.8 STM Lens (cost ~ C$160) with a ZWO ASI294MC Pro camera. I use an Astromechanics device to focus the lens remotely from the computer.

The Milky Way shot has two small star clusters (center left), Graff’s Cluster (IC4756) on the left and Tweedledum Cluster (NGC6633) on the right.  The bright star on the left is Altair.

The Cygnus region shot has many nebulae.  At the very bottom you can see the Veil nebula, with the North America nebula very easy to see.  Also visible are the Pelican and Elephant Trunk nebulae.  The bright stars are Deneb (just below center) and Sadr (to the right among the red patches of Cygnus).


Calvin Klatt

Calvin Klatt

Howard Simkover

I took the attached from the north bank of the Ottawa River in Gatineau, Quebec, near the Macdonald-Cartier Bridge. For the close-ups, I used a Nikon D5100 SLR with a 400 mm. lens, and a doubler. The wide-angle view was also through a solar filter - Nikon D5100 and a Zoom lens at about 50 mm focal length.

Howard Simkover


Howard Simkover

Howard Simkover


Howard Simkover

Hugo Lama

No doubt there will again be many fine photos and even time-lapse sequences by our „amateur” astronomers with professional equipment, but here’s my quick stab from behind my backyard in Kanata North. Fortunately, there’s still a plowed farmer’s field behind the trees in my yard, so that I can still see the sunrise fairly close to the horizon, if I stand behind my trees. Surprisingly, even though I was standing between bushes and tall grass, no mosquitoes or bugs bugged me. Perhaps, the 12°C that morning had something to do with it.

I found one of the solar viewing filters that the RASC gave out some years ago and cut out a disk from it to fit my camera lens. I taped it to my polarizing filter, so that I could easily attach it and remove it from my camera without messing around with tape. I was a little concerned that the auto-focus might not work, since you can’t see anything through it unless it’s nearly as bright as the sun.  No problem, except when the cloud partially obscured the sun; then I had to switch to manual. I tried it out a couple of mornings before the event and found that at f5.6, 1/100 sec with ISO 3200 gave the best results at maximum zoom, which for my lens is the 35 mm equivalent focal length of about 225 mm.

The first sliver of the sun appeared through low lying clouds around 5:30 and then fortunately the bright crescent rose above the clouds to show the maximum at this location around 5:40. Even though our view does not show fully the annular „ring of fire”, it is obvious that the Moon’s disk is somewhat smaller than that of the sun in this occurrence.

Solar Filter – Hugo Lama


Before Sunrise – Hugo Lama

Eclipse - Hugo Lama

Deep Moon Rising – Andrea Girones

The Fireworks Galaxy – Andrea Girones

Rho Ophiuchi – Andrea Girones

The Ship – Andrea Girones

The Elephant’s Trunk – Bob Olson

NGC 5907 – Bob Olson

Stephen’s Quintet – Bob Olson

  1. Maximum Eclipse from Ottawa - Paul Klauninger

Eclipse 2021 and Cloudy Tendrils – Paul Klauninger

Eclipse 2021 over Ottawa – Paul Klauninger

Abell Galaxy Cluster 2065 – Paul Klauninger

Members in the News

Chris says, “I  was interviewed four times during the eclipse, reporting on how it was progressing and explaining how to view an eclipse safely”.

Congratulations Dave!!!



July Public Astronomy Talks on Capturing the Night Sky, hosted by RASC Montreal Centre

WIth warmer nights upon us and the transition to green zone status for Montreal and the province of Quebec, Astronomy enthusiasts can get back out under the Night Sky on our own (for now). Our RASC Montreal Centre in-person events for members are slowly restarting, with physical distancing and reduced attendance measures required. So, as we regain our access to the stars from beyond our backyards, we are happy to host two daytime public events on capturing the Night Sky using photography - accessible for beginners and experienced observers.

Sat, July 17th 4pm EDT Quick Astrophotography Under a Light Polluted Sky, by Steve Warbis

Montreal is ranked the third-worst metropolis in the world for light pollution, which greatly reduces our ability to enjoy the Night Sky. If you’re interested to know how to take a light-polluted image with enough hidden detail to process it into a high quality deep sky image within the space of just 5 minutes in total, then you might want to see Steve Warbis’s talk ‘Quick Astrophotography Under A Light-Polluted Sky’. Steve will explain and illustrate the very simple, quick and basic methods and techniques which enabled him as a relative beginner to quickly capture all the Messier Objects under very challenging sky conditions. An example of the before/after images is showcased on the attached poster.

Register in advance:


Sat, July 31st 4pm EDT Stunning Star Trails, by Mary McIntyre, FRAS (Fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society)

With the Perseids Meteor shower around the corner, the last two years have featured talks on photographing meteor showers (last Aug's talk event is available on our YouTube channel). This year we are happy to host UK Astronomer Mary McIntyre to teach us how to capture the motion of the entire Night Sky. Learn absolutely everything you need to know to create star trails images like the ones on the attached poster. Mary will take us through framing and composition, camera settings, instructions on how to use the free star trails software, basic image processing and finally how to create a timelapse video of your beautiful star trails. Everything that’s covered in the talk will be available for members as a PDF star trails photography guide by Mary.

Register in advance:


We are also happy to announce that the initial submissions on Creation Station are now posted on the National RASC website. We've also extended the project period to accept new Creations until July 31st. Are you between the ages of 5 and 12? Are you curious about the universe? Do you spend your nights watching the moon and the stars, dream about being an astronaut or finding alien life? We want you to let your imagination run wild! 

Nous sommes également heureux d'annoncer que les soumissions initiales sur Station de création sont maintenant affichées sur le site Web national SRAC. Nous avons également prolongé la période du projet pour accepter de nouvelles créations jusqu'au 31 juillet. Vous avez entre 5 et 12 ans? Êtes-vous curieux à propos de l'univers? Passez-vous vos nuits à regarder la lune et les étoiles, rêvez-vous d'être astronaute ou de trouver des extraterrestres? Nous voulons que vous laissiez libre cours à votre imagination!

Visit/Visite or/ou email


We look forward to your continued support and participation in our in-person Outreach events once this current health situation passes. We encourage everyone to follow the recommendations of our Public Health agencies and wish you clear skies and good health.


RASC Montreal Centre



Perth Star Party


Hello Everyone,

I have been approached by a company in Perth that would like to host a public star night - around the night of the Perseids. If it is permitted, we would like to see a few telescopes out for public viewing. Although the Perseids may be a good "hook" to get people to come, it is unlikely they will have the patience to wait and watch for them. Sadly, my telescopes are not "portable". To the best of my knowledge, there are no aircraft landing fields around, so we could use laser pointers if we register the activity through the RASC.

If you have your 2-doses AND are "comfortable" dealing with the public [who may not have 2-doses] in a low people-density location, please let me know and I will keep you informed.

The sponsor is the Perth's Top Shelf Distillery. It would be held at their plant where they can turn off the outdoor lights.

Robert Dick, 613-283-0362

Carp Star Parties

Hopefully this fall???

FLO Star Party Dates for 2020

Our Ottawa Centre’s Members’ Star Parties at the FLO continue this summer. If you haven’t attended before, be sure to mark at least one of these dates on your calendar. You are welcome to bring family members or a guest. The GO/NO GO call will be made on the Centre mailing list, about noon the day of the star party.


  • May 15 – Waxing Crescent, 3 days, 12.6% illumination NO GO due to Lockdown

  • June 12 – Waxing Crescent, 2 days, 4.3% illumination NO GO

  • July 10 – The day after New Moon, .06% illumination GO

  • August 7 – The day before New Moon, .5% illumination

  • September 11 – 50th Anniversary Event – details coming in the AUGUST AstroNotes

  • October 9 – Waxing Crescent, 3 days old, 16.6% illumination

  • November 6 – Waxing Crescent, 2 days old, 6.5% illumination

  • December 4 – New Moon

Next Meeting

7:30 PM Friday August 6, 2021 This will be A VIRTUAL MEETING ON ZOOM. Watch for email updates. Note there will be no $4.00 parking fee. The meeting runs until 9:30 pm

PLUS: all our regular meeting features: Ottawa Skies, 10-minute Astronomy News Update, Observation Reports and, sadly, no Door Prizes!

All RASC monthly meetings are free and open to members and non-members alike. Refreshments will be available, and this will be a wonderful opportunity to meet new friends who share a common interest and chat in a relaxed, stimulating, and fun environment.  Please join us!

Centre Information

To subscribe (or unsubscribe) to our members-only discussion list ( ) please contact .

The Ottawa Centre 2021 Council

President: Stephen Nourse (
Vice President: Dave Chisholm
Secretary: Chris Teron (
Treasurer: David Parfett (
Centre Meeting Chair: Dave Chisholm (
Councillors: Carmen Rush, Gerry Shewan, Jim Sofia
National Council Representatives: Paul Sadler, OPEN
Past President: Mike Moghadam

2020 Appointed Positions
Membership: Art Fraser
Star Parties: OPEN
Fred Lossing Observatory: Rick Scholes (
Light Pollution Abatement: OPEN
Public Outreach Coordinator: Jean-Sebastien (JS) Gaudet
Hospitality: Art & Anne Fraser
Stan Mott Astronomy Library: Estelle Rother
Ted Bean Telescope Library: Darren Weatherall
Webmaster: Mick Wilson (
AstroNotes Editors: Gordon Webster & Douglas Fleming (