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Marcus Schenk

Marcus Schenk

Posts composed by Marcus Schenk

Total lunar eclipse on 16th May 2022

April 25 2022, Marcus Schenk

After more than three years, we are once again about to enjoy a total lunar eclipse. It is a memorable experience when the full moon gradually disappears from the sky, smouldering with an unearthly rust-coloured glow.

This year, we are only able to view the first partial phase up until the start of the totality. You can find everything you need to know in the “Brief information about the total lunar eclipse” infographic.

We wish you a very happy lunar experience! With the naked eye, a telescope or binoculars.


Useful products for the lunar eclipse

Do you have a telescope and want to quickly and easily photograph the Moon? The Omegon Easy-Pic smartphone adapter is ideally suited to this. Simply attach it to the eyepiece and lock your smartphone in place –  and you’ll soon have a lasting memory of this unique experience.

Smartphoneadapter für die Mondfinsternis

Our infographic provides the most important information about the current lunar eclipse. When the Moon shines red in the sky, it shines several magnitudes less bright. Photographing it with a long enough focal length without a telescope can be a challenge – especially during totality. Is there a simple solution? Yes. The Omegon Mini Track. Although most often used for the Milky Way and deep sky astronomy, it is also an excellent tool here. Tracking provides sharp images of the red Moon.

Die MiniTrack nimmt auch eine Mondfinsternis auf

Of course, every telescope and every pair of handheld binoculars are suitable for observation. Take a look at our product pages – you can find a suitable device for every type of observation.

Like our infographic? You can share and print out our graphic, hang it in your observatory for visitors or create a link to it on your website (at: www.astroshop.eu).

Want to soak up some of the atmosphere? In this blog post, you can see images of the lunar eclipse created by our colleagues in 2018.

Astronomy Highlights Spring 2022

March 1 2022, Marcus Schenk

Close conjunctions between planets, a bright Venus and a total lunar eclipse: In this quarter, the heavens are offering up some delicious morsels which are worth viewing. What’s happening with Mercury, for example? The small, nimble planet will soon reach its best evening visibility.

In the “Astronomy Highlights in Spring 2022” infographic, you can find at a glance numerous important celestial events. You can find dates and detailed descriptions of the events in the accompanying text.

Have fun observing!

March

08/03 Conjunction between the Moon and the Pleiades

This evening, the six-day-old Moon approaches the Pleiades open star cluster.

12/03 Conjunction between Venus and Mars

Shortly before sunrise, Venus and Mars can be seen over the south-eastern horizon. Venus is almost half-illuminated and shining with a magnitude of magnitude -4.5

20/03 Venus at greatest western elongation

Venus is at its greatest western elongation today. It, therefore, reaches its greatest angular distance from the Sun and can maintain an acceptable altitude above the horizon. It is now 50% illuminated.

23/03 Conjunction between Saturn and Mars

Just above the horizon, we can look forward to an attractive celestial display. Venus, Mars and Saturn are waiting for us in a planetary triangle. A good opportunity to compare their various magnitudes.

28/03 Conjunction between the Moon, Venus, Saturn and Mars

On 23 March, we are able to marvel at three planets. Today the slender crescent moon is keeping the trio company. Grab your camera and capture this beautiful event for ever.

April

05/04 Conjunction between Mars and Saturn

A rare event? Yes, because this morning Mars is passing by the ringed planet at a distance of only 20 arc seconds. A good opportunity to view both planets through binoculars or a telescope, or for a photo of both celestial bodies.

05/04 Moon in Davis’ Dog

An asterism is a random collection of stars which we perceive in pretty patterns. Today the Moon brushes past “Davis’ Dog”, a pattern of stars which resembles a dog or a fox. When viewed through binoculars, the sight is very delightful. In some places, the Moon occults bright stars.

17/04 Conjunction between Mercury and Uranus

This evening sees Mercury passing Uranus at a distance of only two degrees. This means you can locate both planets within the visual field of a pair of binoculars. A high vantage point is desirable since the planets are only 4 degrees above the horizon at 9pm.

24/04 Mercury in the evening sky

Mercury achieves its best evening visibility this year. Do you still want to see it? Then the time is now. At dusk, it can be found just above the western and north-western horizon. But only for the next 10 to 14 days, before it disappears.

27/04 Conjunction between Venus and Jupiter

Three days before the new Moon, its narrow crescent comes into conjunction with the planets Venus and Jupiter.

29/04 Conjunction between Mercury and the Pleiades

The winter constellation of Taurus goes down in the west. In the twilight, Mercury approaches the well-known Pleiades star cluster. You can marvel at both in the visual field of a pair of binoculars.

May

01/05 Conjunction between Venus and Jupiter

At a distance of barely 20 arc seconds, Venus “scrapes” past Jupiter. Such a close encounter is seldom seen. The only downside is that you have to drag yourself out of bed early as it can only be seen in the morning sky.

02/05 Conjunction between the Moon and Mercury

For those who prefer to observe in the evenings, you can catch a last glimpse of Mercury today. The spectacle takes place just above the western horizon but is especially attractive. A delicate waxing crescent moon to the left and, to the right, the Pleiades.

12/05 Venus, Jupiter, Mars in alignment

Shortly before dawn, we can see Venus, Jupiter and Mars sitting in a neat row. A little further up, we can also find Saturn. The band of planets stretches from the eastern horizon almost diagonally across the sky.

16/05 Total lunar eclipse

The last visible lunar eclipse took place in January 2019. Three years later, the event is repeating itself. However, visibility for the current eclipse is sadly not optimal. We cannot fully follow it, only the first part. The Moon enters the Earth’s umbral shadow at 04:28. At this time, our satellite is still 8 degrees above the horizon. Just at the start of the totality, the Moon goes down in the southwest. We won’t be able to see another total lunar eclipse until 2025 – and that will be in the evening.

28/05 Tau Herculids

The Tau Herculids are a meteor shower which we have not previously recommended in our Astronomy Highlights. Why? They are usually barely noticeable and not so exciting with a maximum of two meteors per hour. Only avid meteor fans get anything out of them. But this year could be different. This year, the Earth crosses paths with the trail of dust left by the disintegrating 73P/Schwassmann-Wachmann 3 comet in 1995. This year, it could be quite the shower. The International Meteor Organisation (IMO) is encouraging people to collect observational data.

29/05 Conjunction between Mars and Jupiter

At three in the morning, Mars and Jupiter climb above the horizon. It will be immediately apparent that we are dealing with a very close conjunction here. The two planets pass each other at a distance of around 0.5 degrees. When viewed through binoculars, they will appear as a stunning pair in the same visual field.

Omegon Pro Kolossus – the new mount for large binoculars

February 24 2022, Marcus Schenk

Large binoculars with diameters of 80mm or 100mm are almost reminiscent of a double refractor. So how can such heavy binoculars be used practically in the skies? With the new Kolossus parallelogram mount!

Using this, you can move heavy instruments like a feather across the sky.

Großfernglas auf Parallelogramm Montierung

Simply attach binoculars with a level view or an angled scope and then surf the skies. This is a good way to describe using your binoculars under the stars. Turn the mount in any direction you desire. Without having to tighten axles or kneel on the ground in awkward positions. Simple, natural and comfortable.

Different than usual

Normal tripods are small, too weak and you often need to position yourself awkwardly until you’re able to see an object. With the Kolossus parallelogram mount all that is history. You can move your binoculars upwards, downwards, to the right and to the left always in a relaxed position. This does not only lead to comfortable and more intensive observations – you also see more!

Parallelogramm Montierung für verschiedene Körpergrößen

Observe together

Your binoculars move where you want them to go! Observe when lying down, on a stool or sitting normally. Thanks to the huge swivel mechanism, you have complete freedom when observing. What would it be like to observe with others? This is easy with the Kolossus mount as height differences are not a problem. Within seconds, you can lower the binoculars and also let your children observe with you.

The Kolossus mount was specially-designed for large binoculars. The sturdy swivel arm allows for 360 degree rotation so that you can reach almost every point in the skies. When packed up, the new wonder mount fits into a practical carry bag. Optimal for transportation to the observation site. All you need are your favourite binoculars and a sturdy three-legged tripod. And your new observation sensation can begin.

Want to observe more simply and naturally? View the Omegon Kollossus parallelogram here.

Helping children: Astroshop donates €10,000 to UNICEF

December 22 2021, Marcus Schenk

The smell of freshly baked biscuits hangs in the air, poinsettias glisten, and our thoughts turn to the gifts we might find under the Christmas tree. But it is also time to reflect and ask ourselves whether there are people in the world who are less fortunate than we are? Unfortunately, there are many. That is why Astroshop is donating €10,000 euros to the children’s charity UNICEF this year.

“When you wake up in the morning, remember what a gift it is to be alive – to breathe, to think, to enjoy…”
Marcus Aurelius, Roman emperor, 121-180

The background to our donation

Every year we put some thought to who we could help by making a donation. Last year we supported Doctors Without Borders, this year it’s UNICEF – the United Nations Children’s Fund.

Dominik Schwarz, CEO of Astroshop (Nimax) commented: “This year we want to help those who are especially suffering from the effects of the worldwide Corona pandemic; children.”

UNICEF was founded 75 years ago as a children’s charity and has done a great deal of good work since then. Active in 190 countries, it is committed to the well-being of children, to education, to helping with medical provisions, and to combating child poverty. UNICEF sees itself as the global children’s advocate.

The Corona pandemic is the worst crisis since in UNICEF’s history. Even before the pandemic, 1 billion children lived in poverty, without medical care, without education. According to a recent study, a further 100 million children have been added to this number in the last two years alone. The gap between rich and poor is widening and there is an imbalance in the way that rich and poor countries recover from the pandemic. Every person in the world should have the right to medicine, food, and education.

Merry Christmas from Astroshop from Landsberg am Lech

Dear customer, now is the time to relax and to recharge your batteries. We wish you and your family a happy Christmas and a few contemplative hours with freshly baked biscuits or the smell of freshly cut wood. Perhaps you will have the chance to enjoy the stars at New Moon at the turn of the year, and maybe even welcome some shooting stars (the Quadrantids).

Thank you for your trust in us, and we wish you a successful, happy New Year!

Your Astroshop team

Home planetaria: the gift of the night sky

December 20 2021, Marcus Schenk

It’s Christmas time. Besides tinsel angels, snowflakes and snowmen, ice crystals form on window panes – and on telescopes.
The temperature is often unpleasant for stargazers who would otherwise be spending many hours outdoors. No wonder that some people prefer to spend their time in front of a blazing fire or under a cosy blanket.

But you can still enjoy the night sky! Simply bring the cold of outer space into the warmth of your living room.

Projection by the Sega Flux home planetarium with 60,000 stars

This works really well with a small home planetarium. Just imagine being able to turn your living room or a child’s bedroom into a wonderful world of stars. It’s almost as though you could lift off and go on an amazing journey.

Which planetarium should you choose to simulate the night sky?
In our buying guide “6 home planetaria that will transform your home into a sea of stars“, you can find answers to your questions and our recommendations. What are the differences between the different models? Which planetarium offers a realistic night sky and which a more fanciful version? What about other important functions, such as shooting stars?

A light burns bright at Advent? With your own home planetarium, there will be hundreds and thousands. And children will learn a lot along the way too. How about giving someone a theatre of stars as a gift this year?

Then read our Buying guide to home planetaria – here you will find at-a-glance comparisons.
For young and old, and anyone who wants to marvel at the stars!

The right telescope for Christmas

December 16 2021, Marcus Schenk

Candlelight and the smells of freshly brewed coffee and just-baked biscuits: it could all be so tranquil.

Instead, for most of us, the weeks before Christmas are the most stressful of the year. The children are moody and you still haven’t bought the tree. Phew!

How can this be a good time to research buying your first telescope?

Luckily, you don’t have to.

In the guide Telescopes for beginners“, we show you how, in just a few minutes, you can find a telescope which will take you from your balcony directly into space. Together with suitable recommendations that will ensure that the parcel under the Christmas tree will bring you endless pleasure.

Read our buying guide: The best telescopes for beginners.

 

New: 80mm binocular spotting scope with ED optics from Omegon

December 14 2021, Marcus Schenk

Observe nature or the stars with both eyes. It’s plastic and fantastic! Soar over the Moon’s surface or marvel at animals at the forest’s edge. Observing is relaxed and natural with the new Omegon binocular spotting scope with ED optics.

Spektiv für beide Augen

Small and compact, and yet it gathers so much light that observing is clear and rich in contrast – even at dusk. This spotting scope combines two strong winners: multi-coated 80mm ED optics together with new binocular eyepieces with a beam splitter (dielectric) mirror. This gives you brighter and sharper images in daylight, at dusk or at night.

The highlights of this binocular spotting scope:

– Relaxed observing with both eyes
– Comfortable and practical, especially if you are not used to looking through an eyepiece or keeping one eye closed
– 80mm optics for bright images, even in poor light
– High-quality mirror binoculars with 99% reflection: images are bright, sharp and rich in contrast
– New sliding system: easy interpupillary distance adjustment from 58mm to 74mm, perfect for adults and children
– Supplied with 12.5mm LE eyepieces for 40-times magnification and comfortable viewing
– Eyepiece set can be extended at any time with additional 1.25-inch eyepieces
– Sturdy carrying case

Would you like to find out more? Then take a look at the new binocular spotting scope in our shop.

Stars, not smartphones – The ultimate telescope buying guide for children and young people

December 8 2021, Marcus Schenk

Wondering what else to get them for Christmas? Surprise your child with planets, moons and stars! The right telescope makes this possible. So our experts have compiled the best telescopes and binoculars for four age groups. You can now read what suits your child and what to look out for when buying in our Astroshop Magazine.

Astronomy is an adventure with no minimum age. By looking up at the sky, children and young people get to know our world and its natural phenomenons – starting with playfully discovering images of stars through to taking their first astrophotos. Even at the start, the right equipment plays an important role in this. It not only guarantees initial success, but fun as well.

You can use our telescope guide to find a reasonably priced high-quality telescope which will turn your child’s fascination with the night sky into an exciting new hobby.

Astronomy Highlights in Winter 2021/22

December 3 2021, Marcus Schenk

The highlights of the winter sky are the bright stars around the constellations Orion and Taurus. But the next three months also offer us more to discover: a bright evening star, meteor showers and a beautiful necklace made of planets.

In the “Astronomy Highlights in Winter 2021/22” infographic, you will find many important celestial events at a glance. Information and further explanations of the events can be found in the accompanying text.

We wish you lots of observing pleasure.

December:

4 December Bright Venus

Venus is at its brightest at the beginning of this month. At mag -4.8, it stands out in the evening sky now and is, after the Moon, the brightest object in the sky.

7 December The Moon near Venus

In the early evening sky, the waxing crescent Moon joins an attractive planetary parade. Venus, Jupiter and Saturn are visible, looking almost like a pearl necklace.

8 December The Moon near Saturn and Jupiter

Those who sighted the Moon yesterday will discover it higher and about 14 degrees distant today, between Saturn and Jupiter.

13 December Geminids

If the sky is clear in the evening, you should take a look towards the south. There you will find the Geminids meteor shower, appearing to emerge from the constellation Gemini. More precisely: from a point two degrees above the star Pollux. The best time for observing it is between 21:00 and 06:00. With 120 meteors per hour, the Geminids are among the most prolific meteor showers. This year we have to wait until the morning hours to observe undisturbed and with no Moon.

17 December The Moon occults Tau (τ) Tauri

Tau Tauri is a star in the constellation Taurus and, at magnitude 4.3, it is visible with the naked eye. Since the Moon’s orbit appears to run through Taurus, occultations often occur. This is the case today: at 22:30 Tau Tauri disappears behind the almost full Moon and appears around 80 minutes later on the other side.

29 December Mercury near Venus

Mercury begins to be visible in the evening and meets with neighbouring planet Venus at dusk. If you have a good view of the horizon, you will discover both planets from 17:00.

January:

3 January Quadrantids

The Quadrantids are a meteor shower originating from the constellation Boötes. The new year brings us up to 100 meteors per hour, but they are only moderately bright. The radiant, from where the shooting stars seem to originate, does not appear until after midnight. The new Moon was just yesterday, making astronomical observations particularly worthwhile right now.  Green light for all deep sky observers!

5 January The Moon nears Mercury, Saturn and Jupiter

Planet fans will be delighted: at dusk you can see a beautiful chain of planets consisting of Jupiter, Saturn and Mercury. The three-day-old crescent Moon accompanies the trio. A lovely way to welcome the new year.

6 January The Moon occults Tau (τ) Aquarii

It’s still twilight and we’re waiting for the night to come. But the first astronomical highlight is already taking place. At 17:00, the Moon occults the mag 4 bright star Tau Aquarii in the constellation Aquarius. In this occultation, the Moon approaches from its unlit side.

8 January Mercury in the evening sky

Over the last few days, Mercury has become increasingly visible in the evening sky. It’s not exactly bombastic, but for those who would like to see reclusive Mercury, now is a great opportunity. Today and for the next two days, the conditions are particularly good, because its brightness and altitude in the sky are aligned. Soon Mercury will sink back toward the horizon and disappear.

11 January The Moon near Uranus

The planet Uranus is a distant agent in the solar system. Today, it is just 2.5 degrees from the Moon. Try your luck with a pair of binoculars.

26 January The Moon occults Alpha (α) Librae

This is something for early risers only: an occultation by the Moon of a star in the constellation Libra. More specifically, the Moon occults the mag 2.7 bright double star Alpha Librae. It gets going at 6:40!

29 January The Moon near Mars

Those with a great craving for the planet Mars will be able to see it at dawn in the south-east on 29 January. On this day there is an attractive meet-up with the narrow crescent Moon. You won’t catch another glimpse of Mars in the night sky until the coming summer.

February:

3 February The Moon near Jupiter

Jupiter accompanied us last year and was visible every evening in the sky. But soon it will escape our gaze and disappear from the sky for a while. On 3 February, it reveals itself once more in the twilight in a duo together with the delicate crescent Moon.

7 February The Moon near Uranus

Tonight, the Moon passes the planet Uranus at a distance of just 1.5 degrees.

9 February The Moon passes the Golden Gate of the Ecliptic

The area between the Hyades and the Pleiades has a name: the Golden Gate of the Ecliptic. Today, the Moon is a nocturnal wayfarer between the two well-known star clusters.

9 February Bright Venus

Venus lives up to its title of the Morning Star. Because with almost mag -5, it is radiantly bright. This astronomical spotlight appears above the horizon at around 05:00. It shines so brightly that no one can miss it.

27 February The Moon near Mars and Venus

Bright Venus, red Mars and a slender crescent Moon, just before the new Moon. What a great motivation to take a very early morning look at the sky. A peaceful morning mood is guaranteed.

 

Just in time for Christmas – gift sets for star gazers

December 1 2021, Marcus Schenk

Rudolph the red-nosed ….  bah. Once again Christmas is nearly upon us. Are you still looking for a Christmas present? But haven’t got the patience of a saint to search through telescopes and accessories?

Most people have hardly any time for shopping in the so-called tranquil Advent time. Finding the perfect gift is a tough nut to crack, but to be certain you’re not grinding your teeth we have the perfect solution for you!

Our telescope gift sets are perfect for your loved ones. Eyepieces, filters and star maps are all here, and Rudolph and his friends will have them winging their way to you in no time. Take a look at our telescope sets!

Merry Christmas!

 

16.05.2022
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