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Sunday, July 03, 2005


What cloud is that!

As you can guess, the sky was clouded out, so no Pleiades occultation [SFX: tiny violin playing "Hearts & Flowers"]. There are some great Sun Spots, but I won't be imaging them either. Tom's Astroblog reports clear skies, and a neat way for CCD/Webcam users get your telescope into focus on screen (this is a perpetual nightmare for webcams that have significant time lag).

Rather than change the name of this blog to "Obscured by clouds", [pauses, okay, I'm adding this to my blog description] I thought I might do an occasional series on clouds. After all, amateur astronomers spend a lot of time looking at clouds, and clouds are often very beautiful in themselves, even if they are obscuring a once-in-every-40-years phenomenon.

The clouds last night and this morning were nimbostratus. Thick grey almost structureless cloud producing rain. They are probably the least attractive cloud around, and are the predominant cloud form here in Adelaide and Melbourne during the winter months. They are difficult to photograph, because of this structurelessness and lack of contrast. I can't think of much more to say about these clouds, next time I'll talk about more interesting cloud.

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