Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Clarkson on the Moon....

I felt the cold last night in the observatory ...especially in my feet...

Even though the observatory floor is made of wood, I could feel the chill rising up through my boots....

I think it's time to put on some thicker socks.

Never mind, it was worth the discomfort to capture the gibbous Moon...  :0)

Along the terminator last night Gassendi was most prominent. A friend once commented that Gassendi looked very much like a tortoise or maybe a turtle.

You can easily see the shape of a tortoise, with the crater Gassendi A being the tortoise's head...

I prefer to use the alternative name for Gassendi A .... that being Clarkson.

Roland Clarkson (1889-1954) was a lunar astronomer from Suffolk UK.

Between 1906 and 1954 Roland spent may years dedicated to the pursuit of lunar observing and sketching.

Then in early 1954, in recognition of his many years of  lunar study and sketching, the crater Gassendi A was renamed in his honour.

Unfortunately the International Astronomical Union has since removed the name of Clarkson as it was felt that he wasn't well known internationally....!!!!

What a load of nonsense...!!

I will continue to use the name "Clarkson' in memory of this most prolific of Moon mappers.... :0)

Clear Lunar Skies



  1. You have my vote for Clarkson! Thats why SUG and I re-name many of the lunar features! No sketching for me lately. Single digit temperatures (or negative Celsius)and high gusty winds have been a problem. Glad your getting some sketching in. Enjoying them all. Just saw this on LPOD:

    Wish I was more artistic!

  2. Thanks Mike....

    It's a shame the IAU crossed off Mr Clarkson.... never mind, we'll have to find a good blank lunar map and fill it in with the names we like... :0))

    Gusty winds and negative Celsius.... NY astronomers are definitely a hardy lot... :0)

    We don't get the cold winds and minus temperatures so much in West Wales....

    Welsh astronomers only need to be waterproof...!!!! :0)

    Thanks for the link.... Erica Rix...what a brilliant artist..... I often look in on her work....what an inspiration...

    She is one of the people responsible for my return to astro sketching.