Solstice Special

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Solstice What is a solstice? The word solstice comes from the Latin word for sun (sol) and the word meaning to ‘stand still’ because it appears that the Sun stops and changes direction. Since we can remember we have looked at the Sun, Moon and stars and watched these celestial bodies move across the sky. We have observed, documented and calculated these movements. Some have even built monuments to help predict positions and time, such as Stonehenge in England, the … Read More

Buying a telescope for children

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So you decided you want to buy a telescope! Childhood is a period of life where we are curious about everything, where we marvel at everything and are easily convinced things are the way we are told they are by adults…. You could say this is the ideal moment to offer a child a telescope, perhaps you would like to share your interest in astronomy with them. This stage in life could also be seen as the same for people … Read More

Review Altair Astro ED80

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Review of Altair Astro ED80 Used at Astrofarm Astronomy Centre Since we moved to France and set up the CEM60 in the observatory, I have only had one telescope on the mount, the Altair Astro ED80. I will be writing this review as a lay person who is using equipment for both Digital SLR and CCD cameras with narrowband filters. Therefore; there will be no long drawn out mathematical formulas and I will not be writing about the technical aspects … Read More

Autumn changeover

Farewell to summer and welcome to Autumn Like many other holiday accommodation owners, here at Astrofarm we have begun the process of preparing for the colder months of winter. However, unlike may B&B’s and Gites we are gearing UP for our busy season rather than closing down! October is a milestone for us as it is the anniversary of our opening and also the beginning of the winter season. It marks a change in focus for us and a busy … Read More

One year on . . .

Astrofarm reflections – One year on from opening  As we open our last phase of our accommodation this month Andrew and I (Sue) have been reflecting back over the roller coaster year since opening the first four beds in the Dortoir to UK astronomers coming to Astrofarm to enjoy our night skies. Our original design and plan had been to provide 8 cabin beds in a dormitory style room for those astronomers who were up all night photographing and observing … Read More

Christmas at Astrofarm

Christmas at Astrofarm December 2015 sees our second Christmas at Astrofarm albeit our first actually living here. December the 22nd 2014 saw us signing the final papers for the farm and getting the keys to our future. We spent a great Xmas and New Year with 4 friends who came over to share the festivities bringing van loads of food, presents and essentials. We are in a slightly better position this year as we do have kitchen units and a … Read More

The first 6 months

The end of June saw the culmination of 3 years work for The Knowledge Observatory in Cheshire UK and a whole new chapter beginning with The Knowledge Observatory  France. A variety of outside influences – the closure a of the Wigg Island Centre, the difficulties with sustainability with the contract with young people’s project and a truly abysmal year of weather  for astronomy, brought forward plans for us – Andrew and Sue Davies- to open a residential astronomy centre in the … Read More

Geminid Meteor Shower

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Geminid meteor shower The Geminid meteor shower occurs every December and is considered to be one of the best showers as it produces up to 120 meteors per hour at its peak on December 13th. Perhaps known more commonly as shooting stars the Geminid meteor shower can be seen without the use of telescopes or binocular. On the nights leading up to the peak and for a couple of nights after it will be possible to watch this spectacular free … Read More

Review of the CEM60 mount

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Review of IOptron CEM60 mount Recently installed at Astrofarm Astronomy Centre Last night I managed to spend some time getting to grips with the IOptron CEM60 mount. If like me, all you have been used to up to now is standard hand controllers then the CEM60’s display will seem a little daunting to begin with. This is, however, only until you read the user manual, something I never used to do, and then it becomes a wealth of information from … Read More

Welcome to the Astrofarm Blog

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  AstrofarmAstronomy for All  1 Welcome to Astrofarm The first blog on our new website   Welcome to this the first Astrofarm blog! I am Andrew Davies, astronomer at Astrofarm, residential astronomy centre in the South of France. I started in astronomy when I was 11 and I saw the rings of Saturn for the very first time, through a telescope. It was that “wow” moment that so many astronomers experience at some point in their lives. Since then I have … Read More

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