28 SEPTEMBER 2016 @ 19H00:

West Rand Astronomy Club Meeting

  • Dutch Reformed Church,
  • 844 Corlette Avenue, Witpoortjie
  •  Werner Kirchoff.
  •  Juno around Jupiter

Werner Kirchoff needs assistance as he does not drive at night. Is anyone willing to fetch and return him to his home address in Rosebank on this evening.  If you can, please phone Jess 083 320 6465 to obtain further details.

Cost: Donation of R10 for the use of the venue which includes tea and coffee.

Telescopes will be set up for viewing (weather permitting). Members are encouraged to bring along telescopes, you can bring along observation sheets and any of your favourite astronomy books for discussion. Ask questions, share information and enjoy!

On Line Shopping and walk in shop


Notice to members:

Wrac does on going Outreach programs from month to month throughout the year.

Any members who have telescopes and who wish to enjoy the excitement of  showing others the night skies, please leave your name and number with Jess by e-mail so that you can be included in the program.

  • Secretary@wrac.org.za
  • sales@telescopeshop.co.za

Next viewing:

Veritas College  Springs – 30 September 2016

School of Merit  Edenvale – 5 November 2016

MSP  for Club members only to entertain a church group with the stars on the Saturday evening. Club members can go and make a weekend of it.

Magaliesberg Visit 24 September

From: “‘Stewart, Chris (Nokia – ZA)’ chris.stewart@nokia.com [assajhb]” <assajhb@yahoogroups.com>

Subject: [assajhb] Reminder: ASSA-ESSA star party Sat 24 Sept

Date: 09 September 2016 at 8:19:01 AM SAST

To: assajhb@yahoogroups.com” <assajhb@yahoogroups.com>, “assaatm@yahoogroups.com” <assaatm@yahoogroups.com>

Reply-To: assajhb@yahoogroups.com


Please remember the upcoming annual stargazing event with the Exploration Society of Southern Africa.
As usual, ESSA arranges the venue, ASSA provides telescopes.

24 September, from 3pm

Bushtrails in the Magaliesburg.

What’s up:
Venus, Saturn and Mars are well positioned in the early evening.
As the crescent Moon only comes up at 3am, we will have access to a lot of faint deep-sky objects.
From about midnight, it may even be possible to spot Uranus.
View the Sun in both white light and Hydrogen-alpha.

To book:
Contact Miriam on mariamisa45@gmail.com
Please let her know if you are coming, how many people in your party, whether you plan to stay overnight

We will again have the Potjie Cooking Challenge which was such a tasty success last year.
Dinner will include all the potjies, as well as salads and bread

A cooked breakfast will be available the following morning if you do not wish to bring your own.

Available dormitory accommodation:
Loft 9 bunk beds
Bogies Nest 7 bunk beds
Owl house 5 bunk beds
Tiggers Den 4 bunk beds and 1 single bed
Hawk 4 bunk beds
Celtis 4 bunk beds

Costs per person:
Entrance fee R35 for paid up ESSA/ASSA members
R55 for guests; this includes children.
(Free entry for anyone bringing a telescope – one person per telescope only)
Camping R65
Dormitory R65
Dinner R80
Breakfast R80

Please make an EFT as follows:
Acount name: Mariam Alkhalifa
Bank: Nedbank
Account No: 1970752815
Sort Code: 197005
Reference: STARS/Your Surname




Juno the satellite, arrived at Jupiter on 4 July under a great umbrella of Earthly excitement. We shall now be able to learn so much more of the big gaseous giant, to find out what makes it tick!

18 days ago, on 28 August, NASA’s Juno Mission successfully executed its first of 36 orbital flybys of Jupiter, passing 4200kms. above Jupiter at a speed of 208000 kms. per hour.

This mission is estimated to end in February 2018. NASA Southwest Research Institute advises that they have recorded very intriguing data and only as time goes by will scientific results be available for release to the public.

This is one of the best chances for our scientists to study the galactic environment and our Solar System, to find out about our beginnings. Juno has on board many different  and new scientific instruments to do just that. We will lift the mantel and find out what is beneath Jupiter’s gaseous atmosphere. We can find out about other worlds, like our Earth, orbiting other stars as their suns and learn about the evolution and formation of our own Solar  System.

More information on the Juno mission is available at:



This color view from NASA’s Juno spacecraft is made from some of the first images taken by JunoCam after the spacecraft entered orbit around Jupiter on July 5th (UTC).
Credits: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SwRI/MSSS



DATE                       SUNRISE                           SUNSET               LENGTH OF DAY

5/9/2016              06:16                                    17:58                                     11:41:17

10/9/2016            06:10                                     17:59                                     11:48:44

15/9/2016            06:05                                     18:02                                     11:57:47

25/9/2016            05:54                                     18:05                                     12:11:33

30/9/2016            05:48                                     18:09                                     12:19:14

Looking at the sun through a telescope or binoculars without the necessary equipment or protection Will Blind You.


DATE                                     MOON RISE                        MOON SET

7/9/2016                              8:41                                        21:34

9/9/2016                              11:19                                     00:06                     1ST.QTR.

16/9/2016                            17:50                                     05:42                     FULL MOON

23/9/2016                            00:12                                     11:21                     LAST QTR.

30/9/2016                            5:29                                        17:46


  • http://www.timeanddate.com/moon/south-africa/johannesburg

Planets in SEPTEMBER:

The planets are in much the same situation as what they were in August.

Mercury, Venus and Jupiter:These three planets sinking fast. They are lower down in the west than they were in August, they and are  gone by mid evening.

Mars and Saturn:  are still brightly visible each night but are now situated high in the sky. Moving westward with Scorpious, together they will all be gone from our sky in the early morning hours. Keep observing them as they travel westward and absorb their beauty for they will have left our skies by November.



 Deep-sky objects:


M4 – NGC 6121  ( Scorpious) M4 is the Milky Way’s Largest globular cluster, Omega Centauri, sparkling with ten million stars.

M8 – NGC 6523    (Sagittarius) The Lagoon Nebula

M6 – NGC 6405    (Scorpious) The Butterfly Cluster

M20 – NGC 6514  ( Sagittarius) Trifid Nebula



 Meteor Showers:

Most important: A dark sky, is what is needed to observe meteors.Moonlight is a chaser. A dark sky is important so patch in to see what the moon is doing and schedule your dates and times for meteor sightings.

Meteor, Meteoroid or Meteorite?

Whenever a meteoroid enters the atmosphere of the Earth, it generates a flash of light called a meteor, or “shooting star.” High temperatures caused by friction between the meteoroid and gases in the Earth’s atmosphere heats the meteoroid to the point where it starts glowing. It is this glow that makes the meteoroid visible from the surface of the Earth.

Meteoroids generally glow for a very short period of time – they tend to burn up before hitting the surface of the Earth. If a meteoroid does not disintegrate while passing through Earth’s atmosphere and hits the Earth’s surface, it is known as a Meteorite. Meteorites are thought to originate from the asteroid belt, though some meteorite debris has been identified as belonging to the Moon and Mars.


What is a Meteor Shower?

Sometimes, meteors occur in clusters known as a meteor shower. Meteor showers occur when a comet comes close to the sun and produces debris – meteoroids – that spread around the comet’s orbit. Anytime the Earth’s and the comets orbit coincide, the Earth experiences a meteor shower.

Since meteoroids that create a meteor shower all move on a parallel path, and at the same velocity, they seem to originate from a single point in the sky to observers on Earth. This point is known as the radiant. By convention, meteor showers, especially the regular ones are named after the constellation that the radiant lies in.





Like W/2014 w2 PanStarrs comets in September will have a magnitude of 12or 13 and visibility will be in the early evening.


Venus, Mercury and Jupiter are in the West and setting. They are gone from our skies by by mid evening.

Saturn and Mars are still very visible. Situated almost midpoint in the skies in mid evening and  receding westward and Scorpious also goes down. Read more….



 Satellite movement:

Satellite movement can be viewed on:


All your photographs are uploadable on our WRAC website and your photos are memories worth keeping, so share happiness with others. send your photos to our website manager, Neil.   e-mail: sales@telescopeshop.co.za

Unfortunately there are no current wrac website pictures to up load : Come on members, Please send in your pictures!

 Dress to beat the chills, keep warm and spend your nights under our star spangled, beautiful  night skies!!


photographed by a WRAC member

What Einstein said….

Try not to become a man of success, but rather try to become a man of value.

Read more at: http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/a/alberteins131187.html



Regards Wrac.


Share This