Friday, October 14, 2016

Northern Lights (Aurora) view from Horn Head Peninsula on the night of 2016 October 13

Geomagnetic Storm of level G3~G1 prediction stayed active from noon time on 13th October and I couldn't wait to rush home after office hours to a North most and dark location to witness it for the first time in my life. At 3:30 pm, I rang home and asked my better half to keep the camera batteries fully charged. I finished my supper early to reach the destination as soon as night falls in, I took all my accessories (camera, a head lamp, GPS Navigation, tripod) and drove to  Horn Head Peninsula - a location from where I can look towards the North Atlantic Ocean and Horizon form 180 meter above sea level.

My effort turned out fruitful, even though the moon was 80% or 90% full, and up in the western sky, I could see a grey/green haze towards the North, but the camera captured all the colors that my naked eye couldn't see.
Out of around 200 Images that I captured between October 13th 9:30 pm - October 14th 01:30 am (Irish Time), here are the four that had distinctive features such as green pillars and purple haze over the green patch. These four clicks had a time stamp around 12:30 am Irish Standard Time on it.

The temperature was around 6 to 7 degree Celsius and within 15-20 minutes my fingers became numb and was quite difficult to operate the camera, I had to take back my camera down to my parked car a couple of times to remove the lens-fog-condensation by turning on the car heater to the maximum. A battery operated hair dryer and a pair of gloves for my hand should have helped much if I had them handy. 

Thursday, October 06, 2016

Star Trails from Donegal

Star trails around Polaris (Alpha Ursae Minoris) – A picture that says the Earth still rotates on an imaginary axis that points nearly towards Polaris - This final picture is the result of 126 clicks @ 24mm-f4.0, ISO2500, Exp:10 to 11 sec in manual mode, focus on near infinity on a full frame each stacked together that spanned 30 minutes of star trails. The intervalometer was simulated using the Eos Remote Android app by clicking the shutter release button on the app screen and holding it till the screen counts 10 or 11 secs and then repeating the whole thing for the next 30 minutes. These clicks are captured from a spot near the road R251 that leads to Mt. Errigal from Gleanveagh National Park.

A time lapse video with these 126 clicks is uploaded onto YouTube -

The temperature was around 10 degree Celsius outside the car at that time (12:15 am to 12:45 am) , so I kept the camera as close as possible to my car's radiator to prevent lens fogging, and now I feel that I should have a 12V hair dryer handy for any future attempts.

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Venus Transit View From Bangalore - 2012 June 06

Update on 2012-June-06 08:15 IST
Now I got clear pictures of the Venus transit (2012 June 06) from the terrace of the building where I live. This time I used my tripod effectively. In these new pictures, along with the Venus on the top left corner, you can see many sunspot groups spread over the solar disk. All these photographs are using my old Canon PowerShot S2 IS with a tele-convertor TC-DC58B. I used couple of x-ray films to adjust the brightness. Many times it was too difficult to adjust the brightness and point at the sun at the same time to get it in focus as the clouds made sudden and a lot of brightness change. Here are the pictures with the time of capture as title.
07:28 IST

07:29 IST

07:32 IST

07:32 IST

07:32 IST

07:32 IST

07:35 IST

07:43 IST

I got these first pictures of Venus Transit of 2012 June 6th from Bangalore around 06:35 am IST. I waited from 05:45am and at last, the sun peaked through the monsoon clouds for a small moment, and I could capture only these shaky pictures, the wind was very high at the apartment roof, and I could not hold the camera and the x-ray film firmly to get a better focus, by the time I reach again with my Tripod, the clouds again obscured the sun. These pictures are taken around 06:35 am IST.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Circumhorizontal Arc

On a fine early morning, when the flight from Bangalore International Airport to London – Heathrow, climbed up the heights, I could see this Circumhorizontal Arc. (Look at the upper right-hand side of the first picture and slightly towards left from the center of the second picture to spot it.) But I am not sure if it is a Circumhorizontal Arc, or a sundog. The Wikipedia definition says that “a sundog is an atmospheric phenomenon that creates bright spots of light in the sky, often on a luminous ring or halo on either side of the sun”. You can read more about sundog in arcs or fire bow are formed not from water droplets in sky, but due to the presence of ice crystals in sky in the form of Cirrus clouds. More info about Circumhorizontal arcs is available at wikipedia => Circumhorizontal Arc
Here is another similar optical event that I captured long back ago that looks like a Circumhorizontal Arc =>A Rainbow or a Circumhorizontal arc!!! and here is yet another capture that I made a while back that looked like a Sundog =>Parhelion

Climbing Above the Clouds

As the flight climbed up to the height from Bangalore International Airport on the way to London Heathrow on a fine morning, the cloud pattern changed their appearance over different layers. Here in the two pictures below, you can see the same layer of cloud from bottom and top. In the first picture you can see two layers of clouds, one below the level of the aircraft and one above, obscuring the sun. The second picture is taken after the flight climbed to some more height and reached farther high from the obscuring layer. But another dispersed layer of cloud is still visible obscuring the sun to a certain extend in the second picture also.

Friday, May 04, 2012

St. Catherine Church Payyampally – A Painting

The St. Catherine Church in Payyampally is a catholic Syro Malabar Church under Mananthavady Diocese. Payyampally Parish was promoted to Forane somewhere around the year 2000 with the following 11 parish under it, including Payyampally parish

  • St. George, Appapara
  • St. Thomas, Arattuthara
  • St. Joseph, Bavali
  • Bl. Chavara Kuriakose, Edayoorkunnu
  • Little Flower, Kammana
  • St. Sebastian, Kartikulam
  • St. Martin, Martin Nagar(Ondayangadi)
  • St. Alphonsa, Padmala
  • St. Mary, Panavally
  • St. Catherine, Payyampally
  • St. George, Thrissilery
  • The church was established in the year of 1936 as per the diocese website
    The above painting shows the Church building which was constructed somewhere in 1970~75. I was not even born then. I asked my mother (P. C Mary, retired teacher of St. Catherine’s Higher Secondary school) and came to know that prior to the construction of the church that you see in this painting, the church was functioning in another small building adjacent to the old parish house which is now in the verge of collapse. Even before that the church was functioning in the old lower primary school building of St. Catherine’s Higher Secondary School. The LP school building is destructed as it reached its age limit and a basketball court stands in the location as of now in 2012. A new two storey concrete building is constructed as the new lower primary wing of St. Catherine’s school.
    The building that you see in the above painting is destructed recently (2011~2012) and a new church building construction is going on which is expected to be complete by 2012~2013. So I thought of recreating the memories of the old church building by painting it and as a tribute to all those who nurtured out from this Parish during the last 35 or 40 years.
    Read more about St. Catherine’s Higher secondary school here ->St. Catherine's Higher Secondary School