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As part of the Institute’s extension program, stargazing activities are conducted at the UP NISMED Observatory during months of January, February, and March each year.

Below are some photos taken during the stargazing session with The Learning Tree Child Growth Center (Sikatuna Village, Quezon City) on January 14, 2015 at the UP NISMED Observatory in UP Diliman.

Stargazing sessions highlight the viewing of night-sky objects through one of the country’s largest telescopes housed at the NISMED Observatory. Students as well as their teachers are treated with telescopic views of craters of the moon, Jupiter and four of its brightest moons, Saturn with its beautiful ring system, and a glimpse of the current phase of Venus, and the ice caps on Mars. Participants also listen to various lectures aligned with the K to 12 Earth and Space Science topics such as constellations, the solar system, comets, and many others.

Sessions are conducted at the rooftop of the UP NISMED building where participants spend the overnight session under the stars.

For details on how to schedule a stargazing event for your school, click here.

For featured photos, click here.
For tutorials on how to get started with astrophotography, click here.
For DIY astronomy projects useful for astrophotography, click here.
To subscribe to this site, click here.

© Anthony Urbano (Manila, Philippines)

CometLovejoyDec12,2015_C2014 Q2
C/2014 Q2 Lovejoy imaged on January 12, 2014 from Cavite, Philippines, using a Canon 450D DSLR and an f/1.8, 50 mm lens. The photo was a stack of 10 images, with each one exposed for 6 seconds at ISO 1600, processed using Deep-Sky Stacker. Photo Credit: Anthony Urbano. For other images of comets, click here.

Here are simple steps to image comet Lovejoy (C/2014 Q2 ) using an entry-level DSLR camera:

1. At around 7 pm to about 1 am tonight (your local time), look at the sky and try to match the patterns in this finder chart (from Sky and Telescope) with the actual stars in the sky. You should be able to spot Orion (a prominent constellation) and then estimate the general location of the comet.
2. Mount the camera on a tripod.
3. Focus the camera lens at the stars by pointing it at any bright star and then adjust the focus manually by rotating the focus ring.
4. Point the camera to the general direction of the comet.
5. Set the camera to manual shooting (M) mode.
6. Set the ISO to highest value (ISO 1600 is recommended).
7. Set the aperture to its widest setting (e.g., f/1.8 is preferred instead of f/8).
8. Experiment with various exposure time. Try 1 or 2 seconds exposure and then adjust accordingly. In my 50 mm f/1.8 lens, I used 6 seconds exposure. The exposure time must be long enough so that the image of the comet would register, but not too long so as to avoid over-exposure and star trailing.
9. Once ready, take a photo using the camera’s remote shutter or time-delay function to minimize vibrations.
10. Check your images for any hint of the comet. It should show up as a fuzzy green patch in your photos. Adjust framing as necessary.

The comet will show up nicely in photos and may also be bright enough to be visible to the naked eye, especially if viewed from the province. To see the comet visually from a city, you need at least a decent pair of binoculars. For queries, kindly leave a comment.

For featured photos, click here.
For tutorials on how to get started with astrophotography, click here.
For DIY astronomy projects useful for astrophotography, click here.
To subscribe to this site, click here.

© Anthony Urbano (Manila, Philippines)

As part of the Institute’s extension program, stargazing activities are conducted at the UP NISMED Observatory during months of January, February, and March each year.

Below are some photos taken during the stargazing session with St. Mary Goretti School, Caloocan, on January 9, 2015, at the UP NISMED Observatory in UP Diliman.

Stargazing sessions highlight the viewing of night-sky objects through one of the country’s largest telescopes housed at the NISMED Observatory. Students as well as their teachers are treated with telescopic views of craters of the moon, Jupiter and four of its brightest moons, Saturn with its beautiful ring system, and a glimpse of the current phase of Venus, and the ice caps on Mars. Participants also listen to various lectures aligned with the K to 12 Earth and Space Science topics such as constellations, the solar system, comets, and many others.

Sessions are conducted at the rooftop of the UP NISMED building where participants spend the overnight session under the stars.

For details on how to schedule a stargazing event for your school, click here.

For featured photos, click here.
For tutorials on how to get started with astrophotography, click here.
For DIY astronomy projects useful for astrophotography, click here.
To subscribe to this site, click here.

© Anthony Urbano (Manila, Philippines)

As part of the its 50th anniversary celebration, UP NISMED—a government institute that takes care of the development of science and mathematics education in the Philippines (and currently, the office I work for)—opened its observatory to the public on December 5, 2014, from 7 to 11 pm. Here are some photos taken during the Buwan at Bituin, UP NISMED Observatory Open House.

About 850 people including teachers, students, parents, children, and science enthusiasts attended the event.

Hover the mouse pointer over of the image to read the caption and click to enlarge.

UP NISMED offers stargazing sessions during months of January, February, and March each year. For further details and reservation, interested parties may contact UP NISMED at (02) 928 3545. For more information, visit UP NISMED Observatory’s Facebook page.

Clear skies everyone!

The UP NISMED Observatory presents Buwan at Bituin, a free public stargazing event that will surely bring out the astronomer in you! See the craters of the Moon through a telescope and learn fascinating stories about the stars. Don’t miss this wonderful chance to visit one of the country’s most powerful telescopes. Spend a fun-filled night with your family and friends under the moon and the stars!

Buwan at Bituin UP NISMED Observatory Open House December 5, 2014, Friday, 7-11 pm Quirino Avenue corner Velasquez Street, U.P. Diliman, Quezon City Telephone No. (02) 981-8500 loc 3901-3910

Buwan at Bituin, UP NISMED Observatory Open House. December 5, 2014, Friday, 7-11 pm, Quirino Avenue corner Velasquez Street, U.P. Diliman, Quezon City. Telephone No. (02) 981-8500 loc 3901-3910

To register, click here.

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