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Archive for the 'News' category

Declare war on viruses and bacteria!

January 12 2021, Patric Leibig

During the colder seasons, we spend more and more time in enclosed spaces, therefore increasing our risk of contracting viruses.
It only takes a short amount of time for us to lose our ability to assess air quality as we adapt to smells. This increases the importance of counteracting this.

Significantly reduce the risk of infection due to SARS-CoV-2 / Covid19 (Coronaviruses) and other viruses by using ambient air filters with Hepa H13 filter systems and CO2 monitors.

Seben HT-2008 CO2 Monitor

Air filters reduce aerosols in the ambient air.

SARS-CoV-2 / Covid19 and other lower respiratory illnesses are transmitted via aerosols/water droplets, amongst other things. Air purifiers with class H13 HEPA filters can filter these minute particles out of the ambient air and therefore significantly reduce the risk of infection. A combination of regular ventilation and air purifiers with class H13 “High Efficiency Particulate Air Filters” HEPA filters is the best way to reduce the risk of infection in enclosed spaces. H13 HEPA filters remove minute aerosols (<5µm) from the air and improve air quality. CO2 monitors can also be used to support ventilation.

Air filter

 

According to estimates, the risk of a person in a room becoming infected with SARS-CoV-2 / Covid19 (coronaviruses) due to the presence of a superspreader is reduced sixfold by using air filters with H13 HEPA filter technology.

Monitor and improve the air quality in your office, your flat, the classroom, etc, using the following measures:

  • Proper and regular ventilation / cross ventilation
  • CO2 monitors which support your ventilation
  • Air purifiers / air filters with H13 or H14 “High Efficiency Particulate Air Filter” HEPA filters

Calculating the filter output for your room:

The ambient air filter should be able to filter the entire volume of air in the room at least 2x per hour in order to considerably reduce the concentration of aerosols and particulates. It is easy to work out the filter output you require:

To calculate the volume of your room, and therefore the volume of air, multiple the room’s length x breadth x height. Multiply this result by 2 and you have calculated the filter output in m³/h for your room.

Example:

Length: 5m, width: 4m, height: 2.5m

5m x 4m x 2.5m = 50m³

50m³ x 2 (per h) = 100m³/h

For classrooms / schools or other spaces where groups of people gather, we recommend calculating the air purifier’s output at 5 to 6 times the volume of the room.

Example:

For a room with a volume of 50m³, the air purifier used should have a minimum output of 300m³/h.

For people in need: Astroshop donates 15,000 euro to Doctors Without Borders

December 21 2020, Marcus Schenk

There are times where astronomy fades into the background, when telescopes and presents are not so important. What is important is to help people who are sick or in need. A Christmas idea that Astroshop is putting into practice once again this year: thanks to you, we are donating 15,000 euro to Doctors Without Borders.

 

Fighting against suffering and death

We have to admit that, despite many problems, people in Central Europe live comfortably. What happens out there in the rest of the world often seems distant, even if we see it in the news every day. But all this can change quickly, as we have seen first-hand with the Corona crisis. Like the shadow of the approaching night, the virus spread mercilessly across the entire world, and, in no time, had us in its grip.

The poorer countries in particular are facing a double shock due to the crisis. Take Sierra Leone for example, where the mortality rate is higher than in virtually any other country. Where more than one in ten children do not make it to their fifth birthday. The health system is in a catastrophic state and fails to meet any standards. Water is scarce or contaminated, malaria is raging – and COVID-19 poses a new threat. Or in the world’s largest refugee camp in Bangladesh, where more than 900,000 people live in catastrophic conditions, almost half of whom are children are under the age of 11. Help is needed everywhere.

Doctors Without Borders is active in all these trouble spots and have already made many things possible, for example the provision of a COVID-19 hospital with 200 beds in Rio de Janeiro. The organisation is active in many areas; it brings important medicines and water along difficult roads or rivers, and treats the people. During the Corona crisis, Doctors Without Borders fight against death and for life in more than 70 countries. We want to support that.

How we came about the masks

At the beginning, in March 2020, masks were scarce. We therefore used our relationships with our Chinese producers to make protective masks for everyday use available quickly and cheaply. Maybe this is unusual for a provider of telescopes for astronomy, but health and social responsibility concern us all. We also supplied astronomers with masks having astronomy motifs.

It was clear from the beginning that we wanted to link each sale with a donation for Doctors Without Borders. One euro from every sale goes to the organisation. We have topped up the amount raised so far, and are donating 15,000 euro. A Christmas gift that will spread joy.

This is made possible by our customers, and for that we say “thank you”!

Despite the difficult situation, we wish you a wonderful Advent and a happy Christmas.

Your Astroshop team

Astronomy Highlights in Winter 2020/21

December 2 2020, Marcus Schenk

An extremely close encounter between Jupiter and Saturn, Mars and Uranus together in your field of view and the Geminids coincide with a new Moon. Once again there are all sorts of reasons to take a look and admire the starry sky. In the infographic “Astronomy Highlights in Winter 2020/21”, you have all the important celestial events occurring in the next three months at a glance. We wish you lots of observing pleasure!

December:

13/12 Geminids

If the evening sky is clear, take a look to the south. The Geminids meteor shower will appear to be originating from the constellation Gemini. Or to be more precise: from a point two degrees above the star Pollux. The best time for observing is between 21:00 and 06:00 CEST. With 120 meteors per hour, the Geminids are among the most active meteor showers. We are especially lucky with the timing this year since we have a new Moon and so we can observe, undisturbed, all night.

13/12 Conjunction between the Moon and Venus

Are you an early bird who can think of nothing better than to gaze at the stars in the early hours? This morning it will be worth your while. From around 05:30 GMT (06:30 CET) you can see lustrous Venus in the sky and, underneath it, the delicate crescent Moon – since the very next day we have a new Moon. This weekend is perfect for deep-sky observing.

17/12 Conjunction between the Moon, Saturn and Jupiter

We are able to enjoy this attractive event thanks to the fact that at the moment it gets dark early. At dusk we see a conjunction between Jupiter, Saturn and the young waxing crescent Moon. The two gas giants accompanied us throughout last summer and every evening they were the brightest objects in the southern sky. Now they disappear early and let the winter sky take centre stage.

21/12 Ursids

The Ursids are a meteor shower on which you can keep your eye on all night. This is because they originate from the constellation Ursa Minor, from which these meteors also get their name. These beacons speed across the sky considerably slower than the Perseids – at around 35 kilometers per second.

21/12 Winter solstice

21/12 Conjunction between Jupiter and Saturn (note: they appear very close together)

Are you observing the Star of Bethlehem today? It’s the highlight of the month and you definitely shouldn’t miss it. On 21 December, coinciding with the winter solstice, Jupiter and Saturn present us with an unusual spectacle since in this conjunction they are just 5 arc minutes apart. A truly rare sight.

Let’s step back in time: Jupiter and Saturn also met one another in the year 7 BC. In that year a total of three such conjunctions in constellation Pisces between these two planets occurred. Scientists can still prove that today. We can assume that, due to its distinctive nature, this was what became to be known as the Star of Bethlehem. An interesting association so close to Christmas, isn’t it?

How about observing both of them through your telescope in a single field of view? You need to be sure to take up your observing position early. Preferably around 17:00 CET when the gas giants are sufficiently high in the sky, since in less than 1.5 hours they will disappear into the haze on the horizon.

21/12 The Moon occults mag 4.3 star

At 20:04 GMT (21:04 CET) the Moon occults the 4.3 mag star 30 PSC, which belongs to the constellation Pisces. What is especially beautiful is that the Moon moves closer to the star from its unilluminated side, so suddenly the star disappears as if it was simply switched off. At 21:15 GMT (22:15 CET) it twinkles again from the other side of the Moon.

23/12 The Moon near Mars

In October Mars stood in favourable opposition and was spectacular to see. Now it is in the constellation Pisces where it can be observed during the first half of the night. This evening the Moon joins it.

24/12

Happy Christmas!

27/12 The Moon near Aldebaran and the Pleiades

Even people who do not concern themselves with the night sky notice the Pleiades, and they often mistake them for Ursa Minor. Observers of the sky know differently: it is the best-known open star cluster which has been observed by mankind for thousands of years and which has a special significance for many cultures. Tonight the Moon meets up with the Pleiades and with Aldebaran, the brightest star in Taurus.

January:

02/01 Quadrantids

The Quadrantids is a meteor shower originating from the constellation Boötes. The new year starts with an astronomical performance which delivers around 120 meteors per hour. The radiant, from where the shooting stars appear to originate, only appears after midnight. Unfortunately, this year the bright Moon disturbs the show, since full Moon was only three days ago.

03/01 The Moon near Regulus

Today the Moon and Regulus can be seen, with a separation of 4 degrees. The name Regulus means ”little king“ in Latin. Because of its proximity to the ecliptic, it regularly meets the Moon.

07/01 The Moon near Spica

Spica is a massive blue star, a variable star, and at the same time a binary star system. 262 light years away, 13,000 times brighter than the Sun, and 7.5 times larger than the radius of the Sun, it takes 16th place in the list of the brightest stars in the sky. Spica is located at the ear of grain that Virgo holds in her left hand, this is also the origin of the star’s Latin name. On 7 January the Moon is nearby.

11/01 The Moon near Venus

On the morning of 11 January dawn is nearly over when Venus rises at 06:00 GMT (07:00 CET) and meets the slender crescent Moon above. At this point the Sun is still just 9 degrees below the horizon.

20/01 Mars near Uranus

The planet Uranus is theoretically visible with the naked eye. However, in practice the 2.9 billion kilometre distant planet is not so easy to find. The problem is that it is so small that it can be difficult to distinguish from a star. This is tricky with binoculars, but is a little easier with a telescope where you can distinguish one ”star“ with a minimally-greater diameter from another. This evening you can find Uranus more easily because it comes near Mars at a distance of 1.5 degrees.

If you use an eyepiece with a longer focal length then you can admire both in your field of view.

21/01 The Moon near Mars

Today the Moon passes Mars at a separation of 5.5 degrees.

24.01. Mercury at greatest eastern elongation

Mercury orbits the Sun so quickly and so close, that we cannot always observe it. However now Mercury is once again at a greater angular distance of 18 degrees from the Sun. That’s not a large number, but we can nonetheless observe it during its half phase. Mercury is to be seen in the evening sky shortly after sunset. Whatever you do, wait until the Sun has set. Then you will discover Mercury just above the western horizon.

27/01 Mercury at best visibility

Today Mercury reaches its highest position in the night sky, and with it its best evening visibility. From tomorrow its orbit sends it lower, back towards the horizon.

February:

03/02 The Moon near Spica

Once again, this morning the Moon passes by star Spica in Virgo. What is behind these frequent encounters? The ecliptic lies above Spica which ensures that the Moon frequently comes to visit.

06/02 The Moon near Antares

This morning, the 23-day old and waning Moon meets Antares, the brightest star in the constellation Scorpius.

19/02 The Moon near Mars, Pleiades and the Hyades

A fine sight in the evening sky: the Moon visits the constellation Taurus and remains in a position between the Hyades and the Pleiades. Both are ancient open star clusters that people have been observing since time immemorial. Mars joins in too. Isn’t this get-together worth a photo?

23/02 The Moon near Pollux

In the last days of the month the waxing Moon wanders from the constellation Taurus towards Gemini. This evening it meets Pollux, a red giant star that is 34 light years away.

26/02 The Moon near Regulus

Just a few hours before the full Moon, our satellite meets up with Regulus, the brightest star in Leo. When dusk is over we see an interesting image in the starry sky: in the west the autumn constellations are disappearing from view, in the south the winter constellations reach their highest point, and in the east spring is climbing over the horizon.

Experience astrophotography with the Radian Raptor

November 3 2020, Jan Ströher

Under its own brand, Radian, the American telescope retailer OPT is now launching a high-performance, top-quality, and super-portable apochromat with triplet lens design, which has already created a great deal of enthusiastic anticipation among astrophotographers. The Radian Raptor is a light and compact photo machine which, with an aperture ratio of f/4.5, will, above all, ensure amazing deep sky images. With a shorter design and weighing just 1.8kg, the telescope can be attached to photographic tripods and travel mounts such as the Skywatcher Star Adventurer or the iOptron SkyGuide without any problem. This makes it a perfect travel companion that can be easily transported in the padded backpack supplied and fits in any hand luggage.

OPT has thought of everything you might need for successful astrophotography in this triplet apochromat:

A fast aperture ratio of f/4.5 allows short exposure times, ensuring that the Radian Raptor stands out as a fast wide-field device – ideal for images of emission nebulae, galaxies and star clusters.

The use of premium glass, coupled with multi-coated surfaces, results in this triplet apo’s colour-true, high-contrast and very sharp imaging capabilities. An already built-in corrector flattens the entire field of view, shows needle-sharp stars right up to the edges and so makes the use of full-frame sensors a pleasure. In addition, there is no need to purchase an additional flattener or reducer.

With a focal length of just 275mm, you have an ultra-compact telescope for extensive wide-field images: objects such as the Veil Nebula or the Horsehead Nebula in the constellation Orion fit completely into the field of view of a full-frame sensor. Here is an image of the California Nebula captured by the 61mm Radian Raptor:

A solid, rotatable 2.5″ rack and pinion focuser with a high load capacity and the 1:10 fine focusing ensure a stable connection to your camera and precise focusing. The hexagonal tube clamps have differently-threaded holes to attach various accessories and integrated cable channels in the clamps reduce cable clutter. Especially for astrophotography, other equipment such as guidescopes, dew heaters, control modules or remote controls are usually required in addition to the telescope itself. The Radian Raptor is designed by astrophotographers and takes all possible applications into account. The recommended back focus of 55mm can be achieved and precisely adjusted with the adapters included.

Another treat is the inclusion of two bars for attaching to your mount: a 4″ Vixen dovetail bar and a 6.5″ universal Losmandy bar with a correspondingly-wider surface area. Both bars also have threads to attach the Raptor to a photo mount. With these you have compatibility with all mounts/dovetail clamps.

Finally, you get a waterproof and padded backpack to safely store the Radian Raptor, which also offers space for a CMOS camera and other small items.

Experience a new chapter in astrophotography and optimise your equipment with the Radian Raptor**!

(**available from mid-November 2020 from us here at Astroshop!)

CEM70 with iGuider – the latest innovation from iOptron

September 23 2020, Jan Ströher

The American company iOptron, which has already built a good reputation for itself in recent years with innovative, efficient and quiet mounts, launched a worthy successor to the popular CEM60 in April this year: the CEM70.

The new CEM70 comes with the characteristic appearance of the proven CEM mounts. CEM stands for centre-balanced equatorial mount. This design allows a particularlyfavourable ratio of load capacity to actual mount weight. In the case of the CEM70, the ratio is 2.3. This means that the mount carries more than twice its own weight! So, the CEM70 is still suitable for mobile applications, but is also a very good mount for observatories.

The stepper motors and the toothed belt drive allow high pointing accuracy in GoTo operation, but most importantly, a very precise tracking accuracy with a periodic error of less than +/- 3.5 arc seconds. All this with the usual welcome quiet operation of all iOptron mounts.

Just like the CEM25P or the CEM60, the new model is perfectly suited for astrophotography. The highlight is a version which comes with iGuider, an integrated autoguider! In addition, both versions of the CEM70 have an ST4 interface, built-in GPS, a sturdy transport case, quiet stepper motors, the proven Go2Nova hand controller, as well as a dual mount saddle for Vixen and Losmandy dovetail plates.

With a maximum load capacity of 31kg, the CEM70 offers great flexibility for different telescopes and the appropriate photographic equipment. All in all, the new CEM70 is an even more portable mount with a wellthought-out design, useful functions and additional features, which also carries a higher instrument load even more safely, tracks quietly and precisely, and thus will never let you down during astrophotography! Both model versions can be found from us here at Astroshop.

Free mouth and nose masks from your 3D printer: How to make your own mask

June 5 2020, Marcus Schenk

It is part of everyday life. We all have to wear a face mask in public from now on. We, therefore, have an unconventional craft tip for everyone with a 3D printer.

With our free downloadable 3D file and a simple tissue, you can quickly make your own makeshift mask.

Once printed you can make up a mask in only a few minutes.

Die selbstgebastelte Mund- und Nasenmaske

 

So how does this work exactly?

Normally our production department develops new products and telescopes for our Omegon brand but, due to the Coronavirus outbreak, we are having a rethink. So our developers have designed a holder, using which you can create a sturdy mouth and nose cover using kitchen roll.

But how? You attach two of the four frame sections created in the 3D printer to the outer edges of the sheet of kitchen roll. Even a sharp tug will not tear the paper, it will remain sturdy. You can then attach a rubber band to the sections of frame and, voila, you have a mask!

And this is how it works:

  1. Download the files Holders.stl and Top.stl and save them to a card which is suitable for your 3D printer.

Download Holder

Download Top

  1. Place 1x Holders.stl and 2x Top.stl into the work area and start the 3D print.
  2. Around 3 hours later you will have the following components:
Holder für die Mund- und Nasenmaske aus dem 3D-Drucker

One of two upper sections, each of which clicks into a lower section with the inlaid paper.

 

Step-by-step guide to making your mask:

  1. Lay out one disposable tissue and two sheets of kitchen roll. Ensure that you use a good quality tissue – it should be thick and dense enough not to become saturated. Lay one sheet of kitchen roll in front of you and place the other on top of it at a 90 degree angle. Finally place the unfolded tissue on top.

  1. Cut both sheets of kitchen roll to the same size as the tissue.

  2. Using the tissue’s folds as an aid, create three mountain folds in order to achieve the classic mask design. Pinch the creases together at the sides (as shown in the image) and place the crease towards the top edge. Do the same with the other folds.

  1. The folds should resemble those in the following image:

  1. Now take a standard hole punch and punch holes in the right and left-hand sides.

  1. Find a rubber band and cut it into 20 centimetre sections. The holders have a small hole at one end and a tapered slit at the other end to hold the rubber band. Tie the rubber band at one end, feed the other end through the small hole and pull the band through until it stops at the knot. Feed the untied end into the slit and wedge it in. Do the same with the other rubber band.

  2. Place the mask with the pre-punched holes into the designated holder lugs and attach the mask to the upper sections. Press down firmly, pressing the spikes into the sheets as you do so.

  1. Your mask is now ready and you can try it on as shown in the top image.

Bear in mind that this is only a makeshift mask and you should replace the tissues after use. However, the plastic units which you produced in the 3D printer are reusable.

Note: These masks reduce the risk of transmission due to airborne infection in the environment. This is not a medical product as defined by the Medicinal Devices Act and does not constitute personal protective equipment (PPE).

Enjoy printing and making.

Grand Opening: The New Astroshop Showroom in Warsaw

February 27 2020, Marcus Schenk

In Poland, there is not just the culture and landscapes waiting to be admired, but now also telescopes for stargazers! Just very recently, a new subsidiary in Warsaw first saw the light of day – then the showroom grand opening followed.

Astroshop is now ensuring that amateur astronomers in eastern central Europe can gaze into distant skies.

Unser neuer Showroom von außen.

Our new showroom from the outside.

The opening was a complete success and was celebrated with many astro-enthusiasts, ambitious astro-photographers from the Polish astro-scene, as well as representatives of the Astronomia Amatorska astronomy magazine.

Photo: Damian Demendecki

In a showroom of 50 sq.m., you can now not only inspect and compare approx. 15 telescopes of different manufacturers, but also many binoculars and spotting scopes. As an astro-photographer you are in good hands here, too: Michal Bączek can offer you professional advice on your choice and will show you what is possible to do with your equipment.

Photo: Damian Demendecki

Is it to be a Newtonian telescope or perhaps rather a compact and light SC-telescope with Go-to control? When looking at the different telescopes in person, it quickly becomes clear what comes closest to your own wishes. Amongst others, there were exciting instruments to admire, such as the Dobson-Telescopes of the Taurus brand manufactured in Poland, an iOptron CEM25P mount, the Starscope 2,1×42 and the popular mechanical mini travel mount Omegon Minitrack LX3.

Unser neuer Showroom von innen.

Our new showroom from the inside.

It is only in our showrooms that you have the opportunity to experience telescopes live and to talk about your wishes and observations face to face. Please come and pay us a visit, we look forward to seeing you.

The exact address:
Astroshop.pl

Kruszewskiego 2, U1

04-086 Warszawa

Tel.: + 48 22 120 23 43

Email: service@astroshop.pl

 

Bushnell Spectator Sport Binoculars in the latest edition of Trekking Magazine

July 5 2019, Betty Lux

In the July edition of the Trekking Magazine you can get your money’s worth from the great outdoors. In the product review various brands of binoculars in different price ranges were presented, among them the Bushnell Spectator Sport 8×25.

Enjoy the magic of nature in close-up

What is the most important consideration when buying binoculars specifically for hiking, travel, and outdoor activities? The answer is really simple: they must be low weight. No-one wants heavy binoculars hanging from their neck for hours at a time. The Bushnell Spectator Sport PermaFocus 8×25 is a real lightweight, weighing just 304 grams. Anyone who thinks that this must compromise quality is mistaken; as is typical for Bushnell, all the latest innovations are on board. This includes multiple layers of coatings on the lens surfaces along with being nitrogen-purged to ensure no fogging due to temperature changes. This can happen anytime when hiking in the mountains, as all experienced hikers know only too well. The best feature: the built-in PermaFocus eliminates the need to continually adjust the focus – ensuring that you can immediately enjoy every precious moment of your tour.

Bushnell Spectator Sport Binoculars 8×25 PermaFocus

The Bushnell Spectator Sport with PermaFocus also comes in other sizes and objective lens diameters. All the binoculars that we recommend for travel or hiking can be found here. Take advantage of our wide range with many products in stock to find your new hiking binoculars.

We are looking for a translator (m/f/d) for German – English

March 26 2019, Joshua Taboga

Thanks to our excellent customers, Astroshop is growing every year.  So, we are on the look-out for a new colleague, to join us with an enthusiasm for amateur Astronomy and would like to turn a hobby into a career!

We are looking for a translator (m/f/d) German – English

You will deal with the translation and proofreading of shop content and blog posts from German into English.

We expect:

  • Job experience in translation
  • English native speaker
  • Excellent knowledge of amateur Astronomy
  • About 10 hours/week
  • Open to new technology
  • Using of SDL Trados Studio a plus

We offer:

  • Interesting translation material
  • Fair compensation

Type of employment:
freelance

Place of work:
Home office or at our HQ in Landsberg am Lech or in our Munich office

More about the company behind Astroshop, nimax GmbH, is available at nimax.de.  We are happy to answer any questions or concerns: Anita Maier, HR, Tel: +49-(0)8191-94049-82.  If you would like to apply, send your application materials to jobs@nimax.de.

If you are interested in becoming part of our team, we look forward to hearing from you!  Apply now!

 

Donation for Scope4SEN

February 12 2019, Anita Maier

Children with special educational needs and more vulnerable people should also be given the chance to look through a telescope and explore the Moon, the planets and the stars. Joanne & Patrick Poitevin took up the challenge to roll out the initiative Scope4SEN (Telescopes for Special Educational Needs) for the United Kingdom since end 2015. Schools for special educational needs and institutions for children with disabilities are donated a telescope, a binocular, and loads of education material through sponsorship.

https://patrickpoitevin.weebly.com/uploads/4/6/8/1/46815569/header_images/1478982112.jpg

Each school or institution who got this telescope will get the necessary support to use the telescope and all the material. So far they donated in 3 years about 600 telescopes, along with other educational material, such as binoculars, meteorites, SUNoculars, books, posters, magazines, stereoscopes, digital microscopes, planispheres, solar glasses, magnifiers, planetariums, CCD cameras, etc.

Picture

Once again, we have given support to this project at a value of 10,000 Euros and wish the association even more success in their endeavors!

 

27.01.2021
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