Mission 9-17 October 2004

On this page we will give you a daily logging of our mission.

Monday, 4 Oct. 2004
The last days before our departure to the observatory of Saint-Véran. We have to gather all the material needed for the mission : software, observation data, most recent ephemerides for currently active comets and astronomical data on supernovae, and of course our clothes and the food.

Saturday, 9 Oct. 2004
After a full-day trip, we arrived at the observatory.

A friendly reception by the previous Nancy-team, including a nice glass of Champagne!

The weather is at this moment not very good. A lot of wind and a cloudy sky. We will go soon to bed to have a good rest. We will need it for the next days.

Sunday, 10 Oct. 2004
After a day with a lot of clouds and strong wind, we are surprised to see the sky clearing up after sunset. The transparency was good, the milky way from horizon to horizon, with a wealth of details, certainly in the Scutum, Cygnus, Casseopeia region. Due to a technical problem, we cannot use the ST8ex CCD camera. The first part of the night, we spend on visual observing. After midnight, we installed the older HiSyS-22 camera on the 5x reducer. Some upcoming humidity makes that we have to stop further observations. We could made an image of the comet 29P Schwassmann-Wachmann.

Monday, 11 Oct. 2004
We spend our day with photographing the splendid environment.

A full panorama in the neighborhood of the observatory gives you a good impression of the environment. Click on the image for an interactive panorama (184Kb)

The night : bad weather, cloudy sky, no observations!

Tuesday, 12 Oct. 2004
The day starts again with a nice view over the mountains. We fill the afternoon with a small walk.

The night : bad weather, cloudy sky, no observations!

Wednesday, 14 Oct. 2004
The story continues. Cloudy sky, no observations!

Thursday, 15 Oct. 2004
The winter enters the Queyras region. At the end of the day, we have 5 centimeters of snow at the observatory.

We spend our day with creating a full 360 degrees panorama of at the telescope. Click on the image for an interactive panorama (196Kb)

Of course, we couldn't observe because of cloudy sky. A fine Belgium beer helps us to forget the weather...

Friday, 16 Oct. 2004
This morning we are in a snow storm. We decide to end our mission today. We have made a walk to the car to bring over the main part of our material. We start the procedure to close the observatory for the winter. Tomorrow, we will close the observatory, go down to the Saint Veran village and then drive back to Belgium.

Saturday, 17 Oct. 2004
We wake up at an unusual hour : 8 am. We closed the observatory and go down by feed

to find our cars at an altitude of 2650m below in the snow.

We had to remove some snow on our way back to the Saint Veran village. From there, 1100km farther, our mission 2004 ends.

Living a week on high altitude is always a nice experience, but only 1 observing night is not enough for a succesfull mission. We hope to get more luck next year! Thanks for reading this diary. You're welcome again on our next mission...

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Last updated on 17th of October, 2004
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