Isabel Williamson Lunar Observing Program

Description

The Moon is by far the most detailed astronomical object to observe through a telescope and the comprehensive Isabel Williamson Lunar Observing Program (IWLOP) will guide you through a complete tour of our near neighbour's incredible surface. The tour includes many outstanding craters, mountains, valleys, scarps, ridges, and more, not only showing you how they appear, but also describing the history of their formation over four billion years. The RASC Observing Committee created the IWLOP in 2005 as a certificate program for intermediate-to-advanced observers; since then, more than a dozen RASC members have earned their IWLOP certificates and many have provided constructive comments, leading to several minor revisions and corrections in 2013.

About Isabel Williamson

Isabel K. Williamson (1908 - 2000) was an amateur astronomer who became one of the most enthusiastic promoters of observational astronomy for the Montreal Centre of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada RASC. Having joined the Centre initially in 1941, over the next 30 years she took on several roles of authority that included: working as Editor of a monthly bulletin; becoming President from 1950 - 52, and taking on Director of Observations from 1964 - 1968. Particularly interested in Aurora and Meteors, she received two main awards for her devotion and work to the Centre; the first was in 1949 when she received the Chant Medal for observations of the Giacobinid meteor shower of 1946, and later in 1982 receivership of the Society's Service Award for her stewardship and training in the Observatory (later named after her).

The Program Objectives

In honour of her contribution to promotional and practical astronomy, in 2005 the RASC offered the Isabel Williamson Lunar Observing Program. The program was revised and corrected based on user feedback and the latest program guide is the Revised 2nd Edition (2013). The Certificate is awarded to any RASC member who completes the following two sets of Required observing objectives:

(1) Introducing the Moon - Make 4 general-view observations of the Moon that cover several aspects and topics;
(2) Main Observing List - Observe 135 geological features and regions on the lunar surface.

There are additional parts, including (3) Libration Challenge Features (optional), (4) Observable Craters with Canadian Connections, and (5) the Lunar 1000 Challenge (see the guide).

The main goals of the program, however, are to give the observer an appreciation of the lunar surface, and a greater understanding of how those features observed formed over a period of time. The program can be completed within 6 to 12 months (or longer), and all features can be observed with telescopes of 80-mm aperture and up.

(1) Introducing the Moon

The first five objectives:
  • (A) Lunar Phases and Orbital Motion
  • (B) Major Basins and Pickering Unaided Eye Scale
  • (C) Ray System Extent
  • (D) Crescent Moon - less than 24 hours from New (optional, Challenge objective, as of 2011)
  • (E) Binocular and Unaided Eye Libration

(2) Main Observing List

The 135 features to observe
No.
Feature
No.
Feature
No.
Feature
1
Mare Crisium
46
Zagut, Rabbi Levi & Lindenau
91
Stadius
2
Eastern Basin Group (Mare Crisium / Mare Fecunditatis Area)
47
Delambre
92
Clavius
3
Mare Anguis
48
Aristoteles & Eudoxus
93
Fra Mauro Formation
4
Vendelinus
49
Sacrobosco and Playfair
94
Montes Recti
5
Langrenus
50
Maurolycus and Barocius
95
Copernicus
6
Petavius
51
Gemma Frisius
96
Mare Imbrium / Eratosthenes / Copernicus System
7
Furnerius and Fraunhofer
52
Montes Haemus & Mare Serenitatis Lacus Group
97
Wilhelm & Heinsius
8
Geminus & Lacus Spei
53
Rima Ariadaeus
98
Blancanus & Scheiner
9
Endymion & Mare Humboldtianum
54
Abulfeda & Catena Abulfeda
99
Longomontanus
10
Snellius & Vallis Snellius
55
Abenezra & Azophi
100
Bullialdus
11
Cleomedes & Macrobius
56
Dorsum von Cotta & Dorsum Buckland
101
Kies, Mercator & Campanus
12
Stevinus
57
Linné
102
Mare Cognitum & Kuiper
13
Mare Fecunditatis
58
Cuvier
103
Reinhold & Lansberg
14
Vallis Rheita
59
Manilius
104
Dorsum Zirkel and Dorsum Heim
15
Promontorium Lavinium & Promontorium Olivium
60
Montes Caucasus
105
Montes Carpatus
16
Franklin & Cepheus
61
Rima Hyginus
106
Sinus Iridum
17
Steinheil and Watt
62
Stöfler and Faraday
107
Klaproth & Casatus
18
Palus Somni and Proclus
63
Airy, Argelander & Vogel
108
Palus Epidemiarum
19
Newcomb
64
Rimae Triesnecker
109
Lacus Timoris
20
Metius and Fabricius
65
Hipparchus
110
Montes Riphaeus
21
Sinus Concordiae
66
Albategnius
111
Hortensius & Hortensius Domes
22
Janssen
67
Werner & Aliacensis
112
Mare Insularum Volcanic Complex
23
Montes Pyrenaeus
68
Montes Alpes & Vallis Alpes
113
Promontorium Kelvin & Rupes Kelvin
24
Atlas and Hercules
69
Aristillus & Autolycus
114
Mons Delisle & Mons Vinogradov
25
Mare Nectaris
70
Montes Apenninus & Apennine Bench
115
Kepler & Encke
26
Rupes Cauchy & Cauchy
71
Walter
116
Gassendi
27
Sinus Amoris
72
Huggins, Nasireddin & Miller
117
Mons Gruithuisen Gamma & Delta
28
Capella and Vallis Capella
73
Regiomontanus & Purbach
118
Schiller & the Schiller-Zucchius Basin
29
Fracastorius
74
Arzachel
119
Montes Harbinger
30
Hommel
75
Ptolemaeus & Alphonsus
120
Letronne and Flamsteed
31
Piccolomini
76
Goldschmidt
121
Rupes Liebig
32
Wöhler
77
Montes Spitzbergen & Mons Piton
122
Aristarchus Plateau & Vallis Schröteri
33
Posidonius
78
Archimedes & Montes Archimedes
123
Mersenius & Rimae Mersenius
34
Dorsa Aldrovandi and Mons Argaeus
79
Deslandres
124
Billy and Hansteen
35
Jansen
80
Moretus & South Polar Region
125
Zucchius, Bettinus & Kircher
36
Lacus Mortis and Bürg
81
Maginus
126
Marius & Marius Hills
37
Theophilus (Sinus Asperitatis & Mare Nectaris Area)
82
Davy & Catena Davy
127
Schickard & Lacus Excellentiae
38
Cyrillus (Sinus Asperitatis & Mare Nectaris Area)
83
Rupes Recta
128
Vieta & Fourier
39
Catharina (Sinus Asperitatis & Mare Nectaris Area)
84
Montes Teneriffe & [[Mons Pico]
129
Phocylides & Wargentin
40
Rupes Altai
85
Plato
130
Mons Rümker
41
Mare Serenitatis
86
Tycho
131
Reiner Gamma & Galilaei
42
Sinus Asperitatis
87
Eratosthenes
132
Sirsalis & Rimae Sirsalis
43
Plinius
88
Gauricus and Wurzelbauer
133
Pythagoras, Harpalus & Bouguer
44
Lamont, Arago, & Ross
89
Timocharis
134
Grimaldi
45
Moltke & Rimae Hypatia
90
Pitatus
135
Lacroix & Southwestern Limb Region

(3) Librational List (optional)

The 10 main objectives
No.
Feature
L1
Mare Australe
L2
Mare Marginis
L3
Mare Smythii
L4
Hubble
L5
Gärtner and Democritus
L6
Markov
L7
Seleucus
L8
Bailly
L9
Ulugh Beigh and Aston
L10
Mare Orientale

Additional Information

  • Details on observing objectives can be found in the LWLOP guide , containing a more detailed description on each feature listed.
  • Deluxe Observing Forms for all the features listed in the IWLOP.
  • Obituary notice from the Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 94, p.202.

Other Observing Programs



This page has been edited 11 times. The last modification was made by [[user:DannyCaes]] on Oct 19, 2016 4:18 am - mwsx1