The first public night after relocating the Campbelltown Rotary Observatory was held there on 5th December 2015.
If my recollection is correct, it was the first public night there since 2009 and a crowd of over two hundred visitors attended between sunset and 11.00pm.
The event was run by a three-way collaboration between Campbelltown Rotary Observatory, Western Sydney University and Macarthur Astronomical Society. It afforded me an opportunity, not only to use my telescope but also to take a few colourful images of the Observatory and the surrounding Macarthur Heights:
Members of Macarthur Astronomical Society setting up in the Observatory precinct for the evening’s viewing before the visitors arrived. In the background is the students accommodation with its “feature roof sculpture”:
The new suburb of Macarthur Heights and its blue illuminated “Gates of Light” sculpture, as viewed from the Observatory precinct:
The largest Dome, which houses a 16 inch Alt-Az Meade LX-200 Schmidt Cassegraine telescope, usedby WSU for research and education:
The view from the Observatory looking towards Macarthur Square shopping centre and the City of Campbelltown:
A similar view towards Campbelltown City and Macarthur Square, taken later in the evening and showing considerable light pollution surrounding the Observatory:
Dome 1, adjacent to the public steps, shown open with the Observatory’s main telescope was in operation:
The new suburb of Macarthur Heights as viewed from the Observatory precinct during daylight, before the “Gates of Light” were illuminated:
Two field telescopes belonging to myself and fellow MAS member, John Rombi, after the last visitors had departed:
The smaller Dome, which houses a 12 inch Alt-Az Meade LX-200 Schmidt Cassegraine telescope, with the students quarters beyond:
Special red coloured lighting is utilised around the Observatory precinct while the telescopes are in operation, to reduce visible glare:
A view down the steps leading down from the Observatory to the illuminated “Gates of Light” in Macarthur Heights:
Red lights dominate the precinct. The earthworks of the (so far) undeveloped section of Macarthur Heights lies beyond:
The plain white main dome of the Observatory contrasts against the varied colours of the early evening sky:
Access from Campbelltown: Gilchrist Drive > Goldsmith Drive > University Drive > Milky Way. For details of public observing nights please go to the Macarthur Astronomical Society Website.
All images © R.Powell