Pete and Paul’s Observing Challenges for 2023

Pete and Paul's Observing Challenges 2023 intro slide image

Pete and Paul gave their popular presentation on Observing Challenges at the 2023 Winchester Webinar. Click here if you would like to view the full pdf of their presentation.

List of Challenges:

Challenge 1: Daylight Jupiter: Tips for fnding lunar occultations of Jupiter during daylight hours.

Challenge 2: Observing Venus at Dichotomy:  Observing Venus in the week and pinpointing when it reaches 50% illumination on 4 June.

Challenge 3: Mars and the Beehive at Sunset: Locate Venus one hour after sunset, then wait for the sky to darken sufficiently to see if you can find Mars and the fainter background stars.

Challenge 4: Observe the Summer Globular Cluster M4: Find the Globular Cluster M4 in Scorpius– the altitude makes this tricky, Scorpius is partly cut off by the horizon in UK skies. But its visual magnitude means that it is visible to the naked eye–and a good challenge for binoculars as well as telescopes.

Challenge 5: Venus at Inferior Conjunction Venus approaches Inferior Conjunction in the days before 13 August, but be careful to consider Solar Safety when observing.

Challenge 6: A Small Partial: The challenge is to see the small portion of the Moon passing into the umbra on 28 October 2023.

Challenge 7: Catch a Falling Star (but don’t put it in your pocket): How to photograph a meteor during the Perseid meteor showers (peaking on 13 August). What images can you capture and share in your BAA album?

Challenge 8: Catching Chi Cygni at Maximum: Red giant star Chi Cygni, in Cygnus, is building up to its maximum. It appears red in binoculars and telescopes and can be observed with the naked eye. See if you can observe and estimate its magnitude.

Challenge 9: Lunar Occultation of Venus: There will be a daylight Lunar Occultation of Venus on 9 November 2023.

Challenge 10: Uranus at Opposition: On 13 November, Uranus will be at Opposition in Aquarius. Its location can be found in the BAA Handbook. Can you find it with binoculars or a small telescope? And can you then find it with the unaided eye?

Let Paul know how you get on by emailing him at with your observations. You can also send them to the relevant Section Director who will be pleased to receive them, and you can upload them to your BAA Album on the website.

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