Total Solar Eclipse 2012
North Australia, Cairns
Photographed from the Outback (Kings Junction), Cape York on 14/11/2012
A.Heidl, Th.Boeckel, M.Rietze
With greetings from the spooky outback.....
Since the 24th of Oktober we cruised through Queensland in an intensive astro-outback--tour with a four by four car, whereat the day brought us to majestetic places. But the night was dedicated for the suberb southern sky by cruising through the celestrical beauty with our telescopes. A foretaste to the sun eclipse.
A bottle tree near the South pole rotation (Queensland, Australia)
During our ride in Australia Martin visited the Waitomo-Caves which are unique to New Zealand. Beeing fascinated in majestic places the glow worm, Arachnocampa luminosa resembles to a 'cave astronomy'. Thousands of these tiny luminescent larva radiate their unmistakable light as an celestrial sky on the rocky lava walls. These creatures spin a nest out of silk from the ceiling and then hang down.
But here the real Southern Milky Way...
Much tries to calibrate our telescopes to the celestrial Southpole failed. So, some will ask himself if it is really so hard. Yes it was. The area around the south pole is a very dark zone, and by misty conditions the matching constellation Octans was weak and nearly unvisible through the pole finder. After 5 nights the moon was disturbing. Because of the equadorial closeness in the middle of Cape York, the pole height was falling down to 12°. Again bad. Near Chillagoe the pole climbed 7° again, and three nights before the solar eclipse it was extremely clear. Now it was childs play. But try it by yourself, you will be astonished.....
..... with its jewels
Left: Large Magellanic cloud Middle: Tarantula Nebula (NGC 2070 or 30 Doradus) inside the Large Magellanic cloud
Right: Small Magelanic cloud with the globular cluster 47 Tucanae (NGC 104)
Left: Carina Nebula System Middle: Omega Centauri (Biggest globular cluster) Right: Carina Nebula System
Fascinating the southern Milkyway appeared with the neon tube effect very strong. Despite of the high temperatures (~30°C at midnight) some acceptable photos were exposed. But it doesn't matter if you choosed three minutes with ASA 800, or six minutes with ASA 400. There was nearly no differences in digital noising on the chip.
Tall and extraterristical shape of the termite constructions (up to 3m) gave the eclipse place a special shape.
Why not Cairns? Two weeks before we observed the clouds at the Wet-Tropic-coast. Always during the time of the totality a wall of clouds was moving over the sea reliably in the sight height between 5° and 20° degrees. This cloud phobia pushed us on the 14th of November 200 km far into the outback. This place seemed save for our observation. (Map up).
The beginning phase seen from Palmer Ville (mr) and Kings Junction
The total eclipse phase seen from Kings Junction and Palmer Ville (Martin)
SOLAR ECLIPSE VIDEO
The astro outback after the eclipse
The sun eclipse hype in the Cairns Post Newspaper.
The morning edition was sold out in Cairns in every store at 10 am.
But fortunately we discovered that the editorial office was across the street of our shopping mall. Let's go and ask for the fresh afternoon edition... :-)
More at ALPE by Martin Rietze
All eclipses & occultations