November 2003

ACT, Inc. has been meeting continuously since 1937 and was incorporated in 1986. It is a nonprofit; tax deductible organization dedicated to promoting, to the public, the art of viewing and the scientific aspect of astronomy.


The Astronomy Club of Tulsa Club


Thursday, 6 November, 2003 at 6:00 PM


Bishops Restaurant (formerly Furrs), located on the Northwest corner of

41st Street and Garnett Road.

Presidentís Message

Denny Mishler


Our Annual Dinner Meeting and Club Elections will be held at 6 PM on THURSDAY November 6th at Bishops Restaurant (formerly Furrs), located on Garnett Road on the west side near the intersection with 41st Street. Dinner is cafeteria style. Bishops just received a very good review in the Sunday Tulsa World. When you get to Bishop's go through the cafeteria line and bring your tray to the back middle room. Around 7pm we will start our meeting and hold our election of Club Officers and Board Members at Large. You may nominate a club member for any position but please be sure that you have spoken to them and they agreed to being nominated. The ACT Board met recently and is nominating the following Officers for a term of one year:

President: Craig Davis
Vice President: Ruth Simmons
Secretary: Jim Miller
Treasurer: John Land

The Board is also nominating the following members for Board Members at Large, also for a term of one year:

Teresa Kincannon
Rod Gallagher
David Stine
Tom McDonough
Rocky Keys
Steve Chapman

The board feels that these nominations are a good mix of longer term experienced members and active new members.

Did you notice that there is an officer's name that is missing for the first time in 30 years? Nick Pottorf has been our Treasurer for over 30 years and we want to honor Nick for his extraordinary service to our club. Therefore, we are dedicating this meeting to our long time Treasurer. I won't give all the details, but I would like to have some of our members tell us of interesting experiences and stories about Nick and the Astronomy Club of Tulsa.

During the past year many of our members took interesting photos of Astronomical Objects and Club Events. I've seen (by email) some beautiful photos from both film and CCD cameras. I would like for members to print out their pictures and bring them to the meeting where we will display them on a special table. The club was active with some monster events such as the MSRAL 2003 Convention in June and Mars Watch Mania in August. Other events such as the TUVA Messier Marathon, Okie-Tex, and Club Star Parties were well documented by digital and film photos. Please bring your photos so that we can enjoy the wonderful year that we all experienced as members of ACT. Email is great but I would like for all the members to enjoy the photos together.

November is shaping up as a great month with a Lunar Eclipse on Saturday November 8th, the Leonid Meteors peaking around November 18th and a host of Comets growing brighter throughout the month (See David Stine's AstroCorner). So let's get things off to a crisp fall start by joining us for Dinner, Elections and honoring Nick Pottorf on November 6th.

Clear Skies,

Denny Mishler



By David Stine



The month of November is full of exciting astronomical events that you do not want to miss. Starting off with the SUN. The latter part of October the SUN was really acting up. One of the largest Sunspots in several years appeared and has grown to an enormous size, which would include all of the inner planets including earth plus another earth size planet. There have been several M-Class flares from this spot at this writing and more than likely the spot will produce several coronal mass ejections. If these are aimed at the earth we may be in for some aurora activity for the next several weeks. If this was not enough action on the Sun another huge sunspot was coming around the limb and had produced a huge flare that had lasted 8 hours. So much for a quite SUN. These sunspots are naked eye, but don't attempt to see them without some kind of approved filter.

On November the 8th the Moon will be eclipsed for the second time this year. The actual eclipse time for Tulsa will start at 5:09 pm where the moon will still be below the horizon. The moon on that day rises at 5:17 pm. At 5:32 pm a small dark area will appear on the left edge of the moon. It will take approximately 3 hrs and 33 minutes to pass through the umbra. The total phase is very short and will last less than 25 minutes beginning at 7:06 pm. It should appear a coppery red color. The moon will pass completely out of the Earths umbra at 9:05 pm CST and out of the penumbra at 9:28 pm. Since it is a Saturday night and early evening event you can show it off to your neighbors by setting up your telescope in your yard and letting people watch the shadow of Earth pass slowly across the moon. This is the last total lunar eclipse for North America until Oct. 7-8, 2004.

Between November 14th-19th you may be able to get a glimpse of the largest basin on the moon, Mare Orientale. Most of the time it is impossible to see this basin as it is on the other side of the moon, but at times when the moon is tipped just a little the main rings of the mare can be seen on the western limb of the moon. Look along the limb just south of the well-defined dark patch of the crater Grimaldi. The long strips of dark lavas making up the two lakes will confirm your sighting. You may even see the bumps on the limb that make up the Rooks and Cordillera Mountains. If you are successful you can now say you saw a part of the backside of the moon.

Between November 12th-20th, once again one of the most famous meteor showers will take place. In the past few years, the Leonid's have produced storm level displays that many of us have witnessed. Those days seem to be over, however surprises do happen and the low rates shouldn't keep you from watching this year's shower. The last few years we have passed directly through streams of dust left from Comet Tempel-Tuttle causing grand displays. This year we have no direct hits but will be brushing past two trails. We still might get lucky if these trails have a lot of dust in them on the outer edges. There are actually two peaks this year. The first is on Nov. 13th where the Earth will pass close to the 1499 debris. We will be unable to see this one, as it will be a daylight event for Tulsa. The second peak comes on the morning of the 19th. This one is our best chance. Peak time is at 1:28 am CST where according to Bill Cook of NASA Marshall Space Flight Center we could see a meteor a minute. The only problem you will have to deal with is a fairly bright moon in Leo. Most notable predictors of these kinds of things agree with Cook's assessment about the streams, however there is less agreement between the pros on how many we will see. Esko Lyytinen predicts only a maximum of just 30 meteors per hour while Jeremie Vaubaillon says 100. Cook feels that during the peak we should see somewhere between 9-13 every 15 minutes during the peak time. Once again several of us meteor chasers will be at the observatory between the hours of 9p.m. and 3a.m. on the night of November 18th and the morning 0f the 19th to find out who was right. Everyone is welcome so plan on taking off work the 19th so you can stay up to see if the Leonids will produce some of their famous bolides they are known for. Even if they don't produce quantity, the quality of each meteor is worth staying up for.

Comet Lovers we have several nice comets developing that should be getting bright enough for most telescopes to start seeing detail in November and December. A new comet was discovered just last month by an amateur Velos Tabur that actually was a very bright comet at discovery. It's amazing that Linear or Neat didn't pick it up sooner. This comet was discovered at 12th Mg. in the southern hemisphere. It is not visible yet in the Northern Hemisphere but by the end of November should be visible low in the South to SSW between dark and 9:30 pm around 10th Mg. The second comet is 2P/Encke. This comet is interesting as it seems to be producing an anti-tail. Pictures of the comet show an almost stellar beautiful blue colored object with a very faint extension toward PA 330.A normal tail would point toward PA 180. It presently is around Mg. 10 but by late November could get as bright as 6th or 7th Mg. The comet will need to reach about MG. 8 before the sunward or anti-tail fan will become obvious visually. It recently passed the northern edge of M31 on Oct. 25th. The comet will be closest to earth in mid November at 0.26AU, the closest it has been in the northern sky since 1838. On the nights of November 19-21 the comet will pass near M27, then on the 22nd it will pass directly through the coat hanger cluster (A must for Steve and Susan) and on Dec. 8-9 pass even closer to M14. Another 11th Mg. comet, C/2002 T7 (LINEAR) will be an easy target in November and will be increasing in brightness each evening until it reaches possibly Mg. 0 in May. We won't be able to see it at its brightest as it will be too far south, but from now until the end of March we should be able to follow it as it develops. By the end of Feb it may become naked eye. We will just have to watch its progress. In November it will be passing through Perseus toward Triangulum. Last but not least C/2001 Q4 (NEAT), this is our best bet for a bright comet in the Northern Hemisphere in early May next year. Right now it is 10th Mg. and not visible in the Northern Hemisphere, in fact we won't even be able to see it until the first part of May when it will be it's brightest. One evening in May you will be looking to the West and is it gets darker out of nowhere this 0 Mg. comet will appear. It should stay naked eye through July as it heads back into space. Now of course as everyone knows comets are un-predictable and any of these could fizzle out, but we can always hope that they will perform as predicted. So allot of comets to keep us comet lovers busy for the coming months. I have coordinates for all of these comets and ephemeris from now through 2004 on each. If you would like copies to follow each and be able to locate them see me at the Nov. meeting.

Venus will also be making a return to the evening sky in November. By the middle of the month it should be a blazing site low in the West in the early evening. The moon and Venus will make a pretty combo on November 25th.

So what an astronomical November we have in store for us. The Sun, the moon, meteors, comets and Venus, plus Saturn and Jupiter. What else could you ask for? That's if from my corner this month, keep your eyes looking up and clear and dark skies to everyone in November.




03 Mon 05:00 Jenks Girl Scout Troop 109 (15)
07 Fri 04:45 Union Young Astronauts (15)
09 Sun 06:30 Jenks Girl Scout Troops 265, 855 & 876 (25)
18 Tue 09:00 PM Leonid Meteor Shower peak at 01:28 AM of 11-19-03
21 Fri 04:45 Club Star Party
22 Sat 04:45 Back up for 11/21



06 Thu 06:00 Dinner Meeting at Bishops Family Dining
(formerly Furrs, 41st and Garnett)
08 Sat 06:00 Riverfield Country School (100) at school on W 61st St

Gerry Andries
Observatory Group Director
Astronomy Club of Tulsa

Treasurer Report

2003 Club Membership and Budget Report
Currently the club has 153 members
Annual Report of Accounts as of 28 October, 2003
F&M Bank Checking       $1,902.95
F&M Bank Savings   $1,203,24
Total Liquid Assets   $3,106.19
AG Edwards Account 1 Sept 2003  
Continental Money Mkt $2,049.75  
40 Shares Fane Mae $2,754.40   
Franklin Fund $6,418,75   
Total Club investment $11,222,90   
Total Club accounts    $14,329.09

Astroland Tidbits

By John Land

Nov 8 Lunar Eclipse Tip - If you are planning to view or photograph the Nov 8 Lunar Eclipse check out your site ahead of time. Since the Penumbra phase of the eclipse will be well under way as the moon rises, you'll need a good view LOW in the ENE about azimuth 70 or so. The Moon will be located about 14 degrees to the Right and a little higher than the Pleiades cluster in Taurus. If you can see the Pleiades you'll probably be all right to view the moon during the eclipse.

ON-LINE REGISTRATION - We now have an automated on-line registration form on the website for new memberships - renewal memberships and magazine subscriptions. You simply type in your information and hit send to submit the information. You can then print a copy of the form and mail in your check. At this time we do not have an option for credit card payment but may explore that at a later time.

EMAIL NEWSLETTER vs POSTAL PRINTED NEWSLETTER - In order to save postage and printing expenses and keep annual club dues low, The 100 plus members who have email will receive notice when each month's newsletter is posted on the web. If you prefer to also receive a printed postal newsletter make a request at membership e-mail

2004 Royal Canadian Observers Handbooks - Prepaid $15.00 Each by Nov 7 We are taking prepaid orders for $15.00 between now and our Nov 7 meeting. To get this great rate we must receive 10 or more orders otherwise the price will be $16.50 each. The individual price is $26 plus shipping. The Canadian Observer's handbook has been the recognized source of astronomical events and tables since 1911. You find easy to read monthly charts detailing events for 2004 plus many pages for observing planets, comets and asteroids. For details see Teresa Kincannon will be taking orders at the Nov 6 banquet since John Land will not be able to attend.

GREEN LASER POINTERS - $70. Several of you have shown an interest in the bright green lasers pointers used at the recent Mars Watch. These are a great tool for pointing out stars and objects at public viewing events. However some restraint in their use would be expected when people are doing astro-photos or serious observing. Vince Moore has made contact with a supplier of the certified bright lasers at around $70 each a real bargain over some of the $150+ ads I have seen. They are guaranteed to be 5mw minimum, with brightness like mine and possibly higher. They will have a 90 day return policy if factory sticker is in place. NO ONE UNDER 18 may purchase a laser nor should they be given as a gift to an underage person. A minimum order of 10 is needed for this price break. Contact Vince Moore < Vince Moore e-mail >. 918.446-6451 He will take personal checks mailed to: Vince Moore 5613 South 66th West Avenue Tulsa, Oklahoma 74107

Magazine Subscriptions: You can get substantial discounts for Sky & Telescope and Astronomy magazine by ordering thorough the Astronomy Club. If your magazines are coming up for renewal, try to save the mailing label or renewal form you get in the mail. Do NOT mail renewals back to the magazine! To get the club discount you must go through the club group rate.

Sky & Telescope is $33 / yr
is $29 for 1 year or $55 for 2 years.

If you cannot attend the TU meetings mail your orders with check to Astronomy Club of Tulsa to the address below.

Welcome to our new members who have joined this Fall. Jay Johnson; Lee Freeman: J. L. Wood; Jane Johansson; Todd Masters; Wayne & Kathy Ferguson; Neta & Rick Apple; Estela Greene; Mike Keil; Jennifer Markus; John Lee Kretzschmar

Club Memberships and Renewals - If you see errors or make any changes in your address or E-mail please keep us informed. Contact John Land membership e-mail or by mail to the address below You may make Renewals and changes at any club meeting or mail a check to

Astronomy Club of Tulsa
25209 E 62nd St
Broken Arrow, OK 74014

Note: Sending your check to the club mailbox may delay processing several weeks. Club memberships are $25 per year for adults and $15 per year for students. Online registration automated form is found at A membership form is available at our website or you may pick one up at any of our club events. You may forward questions to the club by email < Information e-mail > or call our message line at 918-688-MARS ( 6277 ) Please leave a clear message with your name, phone number, your question - along with address or email Please make email subject lines address your question.

Address corrections: Every month we get several newsletters returned due to faulty addresses. Check your address label to see if it needs changes and send us an address change if you move. Also on your address label you will see the month that your membership dues expire.

Email Addresses - Sign UP to get the latest Astro Alerts from David Stine and other events that take place during the month. If you have not been receiving these we do not have a valid email address for you. If you would like to added to our email list send us your NAME - and Email address with subject - Astronomy Club email list to membership e-mail

For Sale

Celestron 150mm(6") refractor, asking $600. Charles Lewallen, 918.652.3003.

For Sale

#3025 Bogen/Manfrotto head, (for camera). $25. Adequate for the 6 to 8 lbs. of TeleVue/ Pronto, It has degrees 0/90 to 0/90 tic 3 knob lock downs... Worked fine for over head observing. Used it for the Solar and Lunar Observing Certificates. Contact KC Lobrecht at < KC Lobrecht e-mail >, Phone




Club Memberships

Astronomy Club of Tulsa Membership Application / Renewal Form

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E-mail address - print clearly 

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Please check all that apply:

___ New Membership ($25) ___ Student Membership ($15)

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also includes 10% discount on most Sky & Tel products

___ Astronomy Subscription ($29) / year ($55) / two years

* Magazine rates may change / prices available with membership only.

Please bring this application along with a check for the total amount made out to the Astronomy Club of Tulsa to the next meeting or mail the payment and application to:

Astronomy Club of Tulsa / 25209 E. 62nd St / Broken Arrow, OK 74014

For questions contact John Land

How did you hear of the Astronomy Club of Tulsa? ___________________________________________________________

How long have you been interested or active in astronomy? ___________

Do you have a telescope? _______ Type __________________________

Have you been a member of other astronomy clubs? ____

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What astronomy club activities would you like to participate in?



Astronomy Club of Tulsa, 918.688.MARS

President: Dennis Mishler

Vice President: Craig Davis

Treasurer: Nick Pottorf

Assistant Treasurer: John Land

Secretary: Jim Miller

RMCC Observatory Manager: Gerry Andries

RMCC Facility Manager: Craig Davis

Observing Chairman: David Stine

Web Master: Tom McDonough

New Membership: Dennis Mishler

Newsletter: Richie Shroff