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Photographing the Night Sky ~ Nik Szymanek

Nik's talk covers the use of modern equipment to photograph the deep sky.  This talk is suitable for all levels and features basic camera-on-tripod sky photography, film, DSLRs and more-complex methods of colour CCD imaging.

Nik is a amateur astronomer and prolific astrophotographer, based in Essex. He is known for his deep sky CCD images and his contributions to education and public outreach.  He collaborates with professional astronomers and works with big telescopes located at La Palma in the Canary Islands, and at the Hawaii Islands. (derived from Wikipedia)

His imaging and image-processing abilities brought him the Amateur Achievement Award of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific in 2004. Hi latest book, Shooting Stars, is the ultimate guide to photographing the universe giving advice on mounts, telescopes, CCDs and featuring a range of processing tutorials, the book includes 132 pages of high quality colour images.  This book will be available at the meeting at £7.99

The strange case of the missing dwarf ~ David Pulley

The new SPHERE instrument on ESO’s Very Large Telescope has been used to search for a brown dwarf expected to be orbiting the unusual double star V471 Tauri. SPHERE has given astronomers the best look so far at the surroundings of this intriguing object and they found — nothing. The surprising absence of this confidently predicted brown dwarf means that the conventional explanation for the odd behaviour of V471 Tauri is wrong.

The Local Group