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Remote Astronomy at Observatorio del Pangue
We still offer a service of hosting telescopes or private observatories for those stargazers who enjoy accessing to the Southern sky in optimal conditions. Don't worry for technical support or high speed internet, we provide it all. Below is an example posted by Evasope, our most recent customer. For more information and availabilities, just ask us.

Contact us at : astronomicasur@gmail.com

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Click here to link to the original site "Astronomy Picture of the Day".

Cliquer ici pour accéder à la version française "Image Astronomique du Jour".


Transit of Mercury, November 11th, 2019: done !...

The Moon wasn't the only celestial body supposed to pass right in front of the Sun this year : a transit of the planet Mercury was scheduled for that morning of November 11th, visible from all the Americas, and certainly we didn't miss such an opportunity to witness one more rare event.

The picture below shows the greatest moment of the phenomenon, that is when Mercury stands at its closest from the centre of the solar disk : can you glimpse that tiny dark spot, almost perfectly centered on the Sun ? If you do, compare the apparent size of the planet (10 arcsec.) with that of the Sun, almost 200 times greater. Note also that the solar surface is completely free of sunspots, as it has been for the last two years, indeed a very unusual circumstance that maybe helps to make Mercury appear a little bit more relevant !
The darker areas faintly visible all over the solar disk are not actual features, but only some thin clouds crossing through our own atmosphere. Still the sky was clear enough to allow to watch the entire phenomenon. Let's hope that the next transit of Mercury will have good weather as well.
That will be in November 2032...

Photos: Cristian Valenzuela/Observatorio del Pangue
Camera: Canon EOS 60D, at prime focus of 80mm refractor at f/11

Total Eclipse of the Sun, July 2nd, 2019 : huge success for everyone !...

The weather was perfect, not a single cloud in the skies of the whole "Region de Coquimbo", not even in the coast, usually cloudy in winter. All the groups or eclipse chasers have been granted with a stunning spectacle, any location worked well, from the centre of Vicuña, to the summits of the nearby mountains. We at the Observatorio del Pangue were more concerned about attending our many guests than the weather itself, but we must admit that when the crucial moment arrives, everyone forgets all the rest... At the telescope, during the totality, the Sun limb displayed a wonderful series of large and complex proeminences (we counted 4 of them) plus a shorter series of smaller ones: that was almost unexpected in this time of minimal Sun activity (not a single sunspot visible...). And of course the Sun corona was there, always large, different, sophisticatedly structured. Without loosing too much visual observing time (the eternal dilemma...) Cristian even managed to take some quick shots of it (below): the polar lines are obvious, as well as the wide equatorial extensions.

See you next year then, still in Chile, for the December 14th, 2020, Total Eclipse of the Sun...

In preview for the eclipse: a rare planet occultation...

We are all waiting for the chance to witness the Total Eclipse of the Sun that will happen here in the afternoon of next July, 2nd. The Moon itself seems impatient, since in the evening of June, 18th, as an "avant-premiere" of the great event, it offered to us a wonderful and quite uncommon spectacle by occulting the planet Saturn.

Beside the nice and unusual sights, it is rather impressive to imagine the contrasts involved in such an encounter. In the view above, the tiny Moon shows huge compared to the diminute, still giant, planet (about 40 times larger), while the discrepancy in distances is even greater: the Moon was almost 400.000 km away from us, while Saturn stood at some 1.400.000.000 of km !...

Photos: Cristian Valenzuela/Observatorio del Pangue - June, 18th, 2019
Picture taken with smartphone...