Monday, December 15, 2008

Lunar Halos, Perigee Moon and Geminid Meteor shower


'Tis the season, season for Solar/Lunar Halos, Sundogs and Solar Pillars. I took the above image from my front yard. Halos are caused by the Moonlight/Sunlight being refracted off the hexagonal ice crystals in the high wispy cirrus clouds which refract the Moon 22 to 50 degrees producing the halo, 22 degrees around the Moon, from the Moon to the inner edge of the halo covers 22 degrees of the sky. I made sure I got the houses in the same frame as the halo, gives you some kind of perspective on how big these things are. The cool thing about the above image is as people were walking by they were asking me if something was going on in the sky, I then pointed to the halo and got a lot of wow's , that's beautiful never noticed it. They are so fleeting that unless you are looking for them they go unnoticed, we in our busy day rush from point A to point B never noticing the beauty of the Earth and sky around us, never really stop to look at the halos, smell the roses.



I had mentioned about Lunar Halos in my previous post so Genie decides to look for them , finds one, and gets her first image of one, great job Genie!!


I had also mentioned about the biggest Full Moon of the year occurring last Friday , I had clouds so I couldn't get a pic for you, but once again Genie comes through with a cool picture of it, again way to go Genie!!!


Well we are on the topic of readers pics, Majase Cyc sent me a Solar Pillar image. Solar Pillars happen when plate like ice crystals reflect the Sunlight creating the Pillar, what I like about this image besides the pillar is the crazy cool depth of field, everything seems to be in focus no matter the distance, very striking, do yourself a favor and check out Majse Cyc's sites very very unique and interesting.



Another reader image above, Moonshadow just got her Canon 40D, same camera as me, hey it rhymes, back from the shop and was lucky to capture the Perigee Full Moon, great atmospheric shot with the trees and clouds.


-34c, but feels like -45c, that's the temp at 3:30am Saturday December 13, the peak of the Geminid meteor Shower, and yes I was out taking pics of meteors, call me crazy, crazy like a fox! I have a system , I set up my camera just outside the drivers side window of my car and take images using my shutter release cable, thing is, even then I was too cold, if I keep the window closed I can't really actually see the shower, so I had to leave it open a bit, and at "it feels like -45c" it gets cold, not biting cold in the car, but still cold and talk about tricky getting from the passenger side to the drivers side to operate the camera and make adjustments if needed on the camera, I have to lift my leg over the stick shift not once but twice since I have 2 of them, this time I pulled a muscle, Crap I am such a klutz, honestly it's amazing I've made it this far in life without poking my eye out with a stick, seriously.

So I finally get all set up and take pics of some meteors, NOOOOOOOO, after just 20 minutes the battery is toast, put my other one in thinking, wooo, glad I got another battery, and the same thing happens, 20 minutes and it's done, the wind chill factor taking it's toll. So I go home charge them both up and back out again. I do this a couple times and then it's time to upload to the computer.

I know I got some good shots, the shower itself was okay, but as you can see from the above image, the nearly Full Moon was right in the middle of the radiant constellation Gemini, you can see Castor and Pollux just off the top left of the Moon, add in all the ice crystals and you get a whole lot of white, wiping out a lot of the meteors.

So I get home and start to upload the images, and my computer freezes!! I ended up with the first 10 and a half images, none of course had any meteors on them, never did recover them, sucks.



The image above was taken Sunday night, went back out before the Moon rose to see if I would have any better luck, at least I got a picture of a meteor, doesn't even look like a Geminid, too far from the Radiant, hey it's a meteor.

Leave you now with an animation of my Lunar Halo, put it through a Photshop filter called Plastic Wrap, why do that? because it looks cool, scary cool, like a big eye in the sky watching over us.

I'd like to take a moment here to thank the designer of my website Lady Omega for fixing the code for my Christmas tree countdown, there was a problem with part of the code showing over top the tree and no matter what I did I couldn't get rid of it, Lady Omega came to the rescue and made it all better.

53 comments:

Genie said...

Thanks Bob!!!!!!! You're so encouraging and supportive of us little space dummies.

So sorry your batteries couldn't hold up in the cold air for you and that your computer then let you down, but I still love your meteor pic. I think I even recognize the Pleiades's in the near-center of the photo?

Majse Cyc's page is hypnotic! I have to go back and look at it some more.

I didn't know about solar pillars, cool! Doubtful I'll ever see one in Texas though. But I'll be watching anyway.

I'm so envious of your fish-eye lenses. You shoot the heck out of the sky, though, regardless of what lens you are using. Incredible.

Final_Transit said...

Very nice pictures - Genie too! I'm going to enjoy +20 degrees for few more days and then I am back to sweet snow :) You are right, people are always hurrying somewhere to do things to buy happiness but the real one is around us, and free :)

Daisy said...

The lunar halo is beautiful! I have never heard of that before.

Moonshadow said...

I just don't understand people not checking out the sky when they go outside. That's the first thing I do when I step out the door. I'm always seeing halos and sun dogs and things like that. OH! I've posted my perigee moon. It's not the best shot, but I had to shot it now that I have my camera back.

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks Genie, I am going to have to spring for yet another battery, and look into a camera cover to try and keep the battery and camera warmer.

You are right about the Pleiades, very distinctive and beautiful cluster in the middle of the shot.

The Kokina fisheye is the best investment I have made into photography to date, it is an awesome lens, can do so much with it.

Check out Majase Cyc's sites, awesome phoyography.

I have only ever seen a couple Pillars here as well very rare and beautiful, hopefully capture one this winter.\m/\m/

Bob Johnson said...

Lol Priyank, 20c weather with a plus in front of it, that would be so nice right about now, welcome back to the snow,lol.\m/\m/

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks Daisy, they are beautiful, thanks for stopping by.\m/\m/

Bob Johnson said...

Hey Moonshadow, great shot, so happy you got the camera back, let me know if you want me to post it, get another pair of 3D glasses.\m/\m/

Majase Cyc said...

Hey Bob,

Thanks for posting my Solar Pillar photo, it's much appreciated!

And for those that have asked or sent me inquiries, you'll find a listing of my various sites on my main blog here:
http://pan-psychist.blogspot.com/

Thanks for checking them out, and again, much appreciation Bob :-)

notedscholar said...

Just beautiful.

It's entertaining seeing the pictures with Wordpress snow falling through them!

NS
http://sciencedefeated.wordpress.com/

Bob Johnson said...

No Problem Majase Cyc, glad to do it, if you want a pair of 3D glasses just email your address to me, I will get a pair out to you.\m/\m/

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks NS, I just uploaded a new image to the post, Moonshadows' perigee Moon, when I went back to the main page a snowflake, aka meteor went through it, that is the main reason I got the plugin, multipurpose, snow/meteors, I hope it will be around in the new year.\m/\m/

Mike said...

You have some great pictures here Bob. I visit so many blogs a day. I have to come here more.

You know what is funny about the 3rd picture of the yellow moon?

It looks bigger on the horizon even in a picture! I still don't get it.

Swubird said...

Bob:

Wow! What a post. The halo shots were fantastic. I can't remember seeing anything like that down here. And that was an eerie water reflecting GIF. What a cool image. I did see the bright, full moon. It was something. I tried to take a picture with my hand-held 1.8 MP, but the image was too small to see anything. It looked more like a star than the moon. Brrrrr, -32 is too cold for me old buddy. I had to do a little math to convert it to Fahrenheit. -26F! No thanks. I get the chills just climbing out of the shower.
Great post.

Happy stargazing

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks Mike,lol with all the sites you have it's amazing you have time to look at any other sites.\m/\m/

Bob Johnson said...

Lol swubird, glad you like the post, too bad you couldn't get a pic, and yes it is and was frigging cold here, like living on Pluto.\m/\m/

robroy said...

Absolutely beautiful as usual. Your blog has such a calming effect one me.

zsygab said...

the first photo is absolutely STUNING! Well done! I like the snow effect of Your site... Pls write me where did You get it. Bye!

Danny said...

Hey Bob. I'm back. What a truly great resource you have. Reminds me to look up more often! Like the fisheye effect. Thanks Bob and everyone for the pics. Regards Danny

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks and thanks for dropping by robroy.\m/\m/

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks zsygab, I got the snow from the link below,

http://www.dynamicdrive.com/dynamicindex3/snownoimages.htm

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks Danny, good to see you back!\m/\m/

CJ Harley said...

I really wanted to see the shower, but that darn moon was too bright. The moon was a great sight, don't get me wrong but I was looking forward to the meteorites. I'm glad you got to see it. :o)

Bob Johnson said...

Hi CJ Harley, maybe next year, the Moon will be less of a factor next year for both the Leonids and Geminids as it will be nearly a New Moon.\m/\m/

Cashmere said...

I saw the halo over here... It was huuuuge! Then while looking, I also caught something which I think is a falling star.. =)

Bob Johnson said...

Hi Cashmere, great you saw a halo and a meteor, I got both at the same time but wasn't able to download it to my computer.\m/\m/

KindleDude said...

Love the top shot of the lunar halo.

Sherer said...

Bob,

Wow, -35 you have got to be kidding me. In my neck of the woods we freak out if the tempature drops below 50f. Very cool pictures as always - very scary cool.

Jesse

Area 51 Aliens said...

As usual, Amazing photos! :D thanks for sharing them

TheFortunes said...

Spectacular photography as always Bob, awesome light and refractions. Thanks for sharing the Moon halo and all, and am shivering from just reading about the temperatures there...Sorry for not visiting but I have been with pneumonia and in the hospital for quite awhile and am still recovering. Take care and happy holidays to you and yours :)

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks, It's one of my favs KindleDude.\m/\m/

Bob Johnson said...

Lol, thanks Jesse, it has been a steady cool here, it did warm up to -20c today, almost feels warm,lol.\m/\m/

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks Area 51 Aliens.\m/\m/

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks and good to hear from you again TheFortunes, terrible you have pneumonia, I'll be praying for a speedy recovery for you, take it easy, this is a busy time of year so try and relax and enjoy the season.\m/\m/

MyGemStoneBox by Diane said...

What a great pic at the bottom of this post! Awesome blog.
Best,
D

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks a lot Diane, and thanks for dropping by.\m/\m/

Roger said...

Thanks for the goooooood stuff Bob!

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks for dropping by Roger.\m/\m/

Ruth said...

Too bad about the lost images! After all that. Ouch!

All these images are gorgeous and amazing, how cool to see your readers' too.

Wow, that is ccccold.

Nature Nut /JJ Loch said...

WOW!!! Beautiful pics and well-deserved. :D You're out there working hard for this blog. :D

I love that you have reader participation.

Hugs, JJ

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks Ruth, there is always room for one more reader participation,lol.

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks JJ, I like the fact there is so much talent out there that like taking these kind of shots.\m/\m/

Bemused26 said...

Hi there, I love reading your site and looking at your pictures. When I got your email newsletter thing saying about the moon being so much bigger the other day I thought I'd go and try to photograph it. I only had a few minutes between clouds and not enough time to get my tripod ready! Please have a look at my moon pictures and see if you like them? Thank you! (it is my latest post by the way at www.dslr-images.blogspot.com)

Genie said...

You have a newsletter??????????? I searched your page for one and didn't find it. How do I sign up?

L. Venkata Subramaniam said...

are these halos artifacts caused by the camera?

Bob Johnson said...

Thanks Bemused26, I will take a look for sure.\m/\m/

Bob Johnson said...

Lol, No newsletter, I can barely find the time for 2 posts a week, sorry Genie.\m/\m/

Bob Johnson said...

These are actually happening live L.Venkata, they are really a site to behold, usually has to be very cold for them to form, but I have imaged one in +25c weather as well, although they are extremely rare at that temp.\m/\m/

Genie said...

I got another pair of 3D glasses in the mail from you, thanks!!!!!!!!! Now hubby and I can view Mars 3D photos together! Suhweet!

jordan shoes said...

Very good!

Web Designer said...

This is wonderful

Anonymous said...

I hadn't seen her for a long time so I was shocked to see her unusually slim silhouette hovering over my desk buy viagra One of the new treatments in tinnitus is laser therapy (known also as low-level laser therapy or cold laser therapy) So, they are incapable to express their views and feelings in a normal way cialis uk Winter comes upon as and brings with it hosts of infection as part and parcel

Anonymous said...

[url=http://www.magicaudiotools.com/convert-flac-to-mp3]flac to mp3 free[/url]