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    Exclamation Astronomy Certificate Visual Awards Program Apply Now!!!



    Attention all Astronomy Forum members

    Here at the Astronomy Forum we have decided to introduce an exciting awards program to all our members. We thought it would be a great way for members to be able to keep track of their observations. In turn, members will receive certificates of completion after certain observation milestones are reached. We are going to begin with one certificate. As we progress we will be offering more certificates, of various difficulties. We hope this will be a fun process that will challenge members and help them keep track of everything they have seen.
    INTRODUCING!!!....

    The certificates being offered are the “Messier Awards!!!!!!!! Sample Beauty

    SAMPLE ONLY !!

    Benefits of Applying

    1) A wonderful certificate of achievement
    2) Eternal display of the Messier award badge
    3) Personal satisfaction of victory
    4) Eternal glory in the Messier Hall of Fame

    This certificate will be awarded after successfully viewing 30, 70 or 110 Messier objects. Below are the rules and regulations for obtaining a certificate.

    For the Messier 110 award more info here
    For the Messier 70 award more info here

    Finished your viewing numbers?? see the next steps bellow and here

    To begin the process a member will have to start a new thread in the Astronomy Reports Forum. The prefix will have to be the title of the certificate the member is working towards i.e Messier 30 and the title can be something relevant like - Started My First Messier Marathon!.

    As the member completes successful sighting of the Messier objects he/she will post the specifics of the sighting along with a small sketch/photo.

    For example:
    M31 sighted on 01/25/2011 at 9:30 CST.
    Equipment CPC 800
    Observations A large oval fuzzball noted. No spiral arms were seen.

    if you would like attach thumbnail or image of a sketch/photo of object and get the Messier sketch award or the Messier photo award!


    The rules are quite simple

    1) The Astronomy Forum awards program will work on the honour system. It is up the individual member’s moral character if they want to falsely participate in the program. The program is intended as a way for members to keep track of the observation and be rewarded when certain goals are met.

    2) There are no restrictions as to what type of scope may be used.
    Manual, goto, and push to scopes are all accepted.

    3) A member must observe 30 Messier objects. Any Messier object will
    count. They do not have to be in any specific order.

    4) The member must document the object observed with date and time, equipment used, a brief written/verbal description of each object.

    5) The member preferably also includes a small sketch or image of the actual object being observed. EDIT: OR you may also create a paint or image of the sky as a star chart of how you found it if you would like. A link will be provided at the top of the certificate forum for a observation log paper. If you do not add a sketch or image, that is ok - but maybe users taking the time to do this will be highlighted somehow.

    6) The member must include an excel or similar file (csv - comma or tab separated, txt - comma or tab separated) with the following:
    eg

    Messier Number (M) | Comment | Date (dd/mm/yyyy)

    1 | A large oval fuzzball noted. No spiral arms were seen. | 01/25/2011
    or comma separated like this:

    1,"A large oval fuzzball noted. No spiral arms were seen.",01/25/2011

    7) Submitting your logs and observations into the Wiki as outlined below is voluntary. We would however like to encourage you to fill them in and in so doing a permanent record of your observations will be in the WIKI.

    7a) Members may submit to the Messier observing report page. This is as easy as copying and pasting your forum posts or file data into the right telescope / binocular size area and only takes a few seconds of your time.

    once you have updated your file, create a template in wordpad or notepad or similar program of your observing data as follows:

    Messier Object:
    Date: day/month/2017
    Location (Town/City, Province/State, Country) (can be approximate):
    Viewing Conditions:
    Light Zone/Bortle Zone:
    Telescope Name:
    Telescope Model:
    Telescope Size:
    f-ratio:
    Eyepiece model:
    Eyepiece mm:
    Mount:
    Observation:
    Comment:


    Please use this format to submit to the wiki pages which must be done but is as easy as copying and pasting your posts, just use this template and simply change the date/time if needed as well as conditions, and the following fields:
    Observation:
    Comment:


    7B) Please submit into the correct wiki page by using these Hints/Tips:
    1) Update your file/thread/post with the object observing report submission. Keep this window of the thread/post/file open as a tab or window
    2) Open a new tab by going to the Messier observing reports page
    2) Go to the object page for the object you want to submit ie M number
    3) click on Edit for the right telescope size
    4) paste your wordpad/notepad edited submission edited from template above or simply copy from your thread into the area, without pasting on top or deleting any previous information
    6) update your thread with the submission
    7) let the team know as per pm above to your completion of the Messier observing award


    Example submission in M3 observing report

    User: Southern Oracle
    Thread: my Messier Reports
    Date: day/month/2017
    Location (Town/City, Province/State, Country): Wake Forest, NC, USA
    Viewing Conditions: Good
    Light Zone/Bortle Zone: Yellow
    Telescope Name: Apertura
    Telescope Model: 8" dobsonian
    Telescope Size: 205 mm
    f-ratio:
    Eyepiece model:
    Eyepiece mm:
    Mount:
    Other: SkySafari to track down each object
    Comment: Faint circular blur. No stars resolved. 266x now shows many faint small stars. Incredibly impressive.





    After the member has completed posting the objects, send a PM to both dmbryan http://www.astronomyforum.net/members/dmbryan.html, and j.garvdasky http://www.astronomyforum.net/members/j-gardavsky.html. Please include a link to the thread. A moderator will approve the posts with a follow up post. Once the member has reached thirty objects he/she will be awarded a certificate of completion by email. An icon will be added to your awards list as well indicating you have completed the certificate! That is all there is to it. We hope you all will participate in the program. We look forward to hearing about your progress as you scan the stars.

    FAQ
    1) If I add a future report to the wiki, for an object, and someone has a report on there will it erase their report?
    No worries there is a history there which you can't really do damage as we can simply see past pages/edits As long as you don't copy on top or delete something, you will be ok.

    2) Do I not update my M30, M70 or M110 thread and only the wiki object page?
    It is recommened to submit to your M30/70/110 thread as usual and the wiki page for each object. Just keep a notepad with your details and it will be quite fast to add to the wiki pages. This will only a few seconds to each submission. Even better, it will allow you to compare to others observations for the same object with different apertures and viewing conditions.


    Clear skies,

    The Astronomy Forum crew
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by kingclinton; 02-04-2018 at 11:27 AM. Reason: added FAQ
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    Great idea! Just to clear something up, do previous observations count or do they have to be from this point on?
    Name: Jason
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    You know, I thought the same thing when we first started talking about these certifications. I only need 6 more Messier objects to complete. After thinking about it some, I came to the conclusion that if it is going to be certified that I did something, it only makes sense to start from scratch. No real way to certify something that you did previously. At least that is my take on it. I'm sure the guys with the rules will chime in shortly.

    Jim
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    Now where did I put that clear sky button!

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    You know, since I got my telescope, I've been keeping track of observations in a very similar way to what you describe. I think if its logged from previous observations, it should be considered legit. I've got dates and even comments to back everything up. I've got about 100 objects logged, at least 30 of which are in the Messier series. Should I post my spreadsheet?
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    Yes I believe the team will ok them if you have documented them and have estimated dates and times, then no problem they count.
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    Thanks, Gus.
    I've been thinking about doing my own marathon very soon when the weather permits me to take out my Z12 for its first light.
    One question: instead of sketches or images, would customized star charts work? I'm going to start making and posting the charts I use with my reports from now on. I make the charts on Stellarium. I figure other members could benefit from them.
    Just wondering if the custom charts would be a legitimate alternative.
    -Nick

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    Sketches? I am doing good to draw a crooked line... otherwise I am on board with this.
    attwru, slalles, jimminCT and 1 others like this.
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    Quote Originally Posted by neal_mlc View Post
    Sketches? I am doing good to draw a crooked line... otherwise I am on board with this.
    Don't worry, do the best you can, I have never once attempted to do a sketch either and I can't draw a straight line with a ruler. You may surprise yourself. There is, or will be shortly a link to download sketch forms. They may accept a detailed verbal description of the object in place of the sketch, but I'm not 100% sure about that yet. Even if they do, try some sketching, I'm going to. Maybe we will win an award of who does the worse sketches in the forum. It will be fun.

    Jim
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    Now where did I put that clear sky button!

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    Ok, I'm game I am just getting started on my Messier hunt (17 so far) so this wil be a good time to get started.
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    Good on you Neal.

    Jim
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