Sunday, July 20, 2008

ALP Get-Together at PAGASA

Lalai and I went to the Astronomical League of the Philippines get-together and photo opportunity today, Sunday afternoon, at the PAGASA observatory in UP Diliman.

It's been a while since we were back there, several years at least. The first time Lalai and I went there in 2003, we carried our ETX-60AT telescope in a backpack and took the bus. Something I wouldn't care to try these days..

Several of the members brought their telescopes to use as props for the photo opportunity.

One of the members brought his rebuilt 8" Discovery dobsonian telescope. He built the tube out of plywood and it has a very fine finish. Very much like the telescopes built by Normand Fullum (except without the fauns and fantastic carvings).

I'm very inspired to rebuild my 10" dobsonian (yet again) in this type of format. True, it doesn't break down well anymore, but at least it's solid and holds collimation well. It would take up the entire back seat of our car though, which is quite a negative.

PAGASA has been very much in the news recently because of the sinking of the Princess of the Stars ferry a month ago. The reprobate shipping company has been blaming PAGASA for not forecasting the weather correctly.

The PAGASA observatory seems to have a leaky roof, which explains the plastic water containers distributed over the floor of their building lobby. It's no surprise that PAGASA has shortcomings in the weather department, if they can't fix a leaky roof!