January’s Garnet Star
A few months ago I joined the Ft Bend Astronomy Club and one of the members is a high-school aged amateur astronomer that has created a list of carbon stars for the other members to located and check out.
I haven’t even started on the advanced list yet but the novice list has provided some tough targets from my Stafford Texas suburban backyard. Although the list from my club isn’t online yet, here is one to try out.
Well once I tracked down my first of these strange copper-colored dim wonders I was hooked. Let’s face it, stars colors are an esoteric pursuit for the avid astronomer. But carbon stars colors pop out of the eyepiece at you and I for one won’t look at a field of stars the same way any longer. The color stands out so strikingly that my first target WZ Cassiopeia actually made me gasp as I had when first seeing the moon or Saturn through a scope. It was just so very red.
So the January 17th 365 Days of Astronomy podcast is all about carbon stars and gives some good observing advice so head over the website and have a listen to the post from RapidEye. As always there is more info to be found by following the link.
Try finding R Leporis using the chart below made from a screen shot by Stellarium. The location is set for Bellaire TX and the time date are January 17th 2009 8:30 pm. Click the image for a larger view.