View Full Version : What has happened to Ursa Major???

27th Nov 2001, 05:02
OK..every night (about midnight)I take my dog out for the last "pee at night walk" also known as "Fox Patrol" because the suburban area where we live in SE London has a lot of urban foxies. The past few clear nights I have looked to the heavens to find the three constellations I know by heart, Orion, Cassiopeia and Ursa Major...the first two are bright as usual but...there seems to be a star missing from Ursa Major. Known also as the Plough, the Great Bear or the Saucepan, this is the constellation of seven star, three make a curved "handle" and then the next four make the pan....the first of these last four seems to be missing? Is this just a feature of pollution over London or have other PPRuNers noticed this phenomenon??!!


27th Nov 2001, 05:20

Never fear. Megrez is the star you are concerned about and it is still there. I just checked!

It's not very bright though so perhaps it is the pollution hiding it.

BTW it's freezing out there tonight so put your vest on. My socks are now wet as I couldn't find me shoes!

tony draper
27th Nov 2001, 05:23
Thats ok then Mr T, Draper wont have to go out and check. ;)
PS, might pay you to give the Royal Astronomical Society a tinkle, you have to get in there first , to get a astronomical event named after you. ;)
hmmm now where did Draper leave that number.

[ 27 November 2001: Message edited by: tony draper ]

27th Nov 2001, 05:30
Herr D,

I think a second opinion is called for.

It might just be an impostar.

Gerrout there, man! :D

tony draper
27th Nov 2001, 05:39
Nah,no worries just been and had a look, high haze and a bright three quarter moon here blocking out most but first magnitude stuff. ;)

27th Nov 2001, 06:24
Are you sure your name isn't Patrick? Or, like me, have you just expounded your entire knowledge of astronomy? :eek:

tony draper
27th Nov 2001, 14:26
I'll have you know Sir, Draper did Astronomy at the University of Newcastle and worked (unpaid)at the Close House Observatoy. ;)

[ 27 November 2001: Message edited by: tony draper ]

Tricky Woo
27th Nov 2001, 17:22
Herr Draper,

Didn't know the UoN went for posh subjects like astronomy.

I always wondered what those sweet, posh, innocent Southerner students make of Newcastle. Must be rather a shock for them to see ramifications of one simple tick on an UCCA application form. Presumably, the weaker ones are quickly eaten by the local cannibals. Can you imagine how shocked their mummies must be when the stronger ones return with a strange desire to walk about in all weathers without a coat or jacket?

I received my undeserved degree at the University of Salford.

Always a laugh seeing those sweet Southerners trying to cope with the urban delights of deepest, darkest Salford and Manchester: "Mummy, it's worse than when you sent me to prep school; the campus is surrounded by boisterous raggamuffins. Send plenty of clean handkerchiefs and a new boater hat... oh and a cheque for 15,000 so I can buy some food".

Bless 'em.


tony draper
27th Nov 2001, 18:00
The UoN, has a fine faculty of physics also of Engineering.
Actually Draper did not do a degree course, because he was busy and making to much money in the real world.
It was what used to be called adult education, and some excellent courses were to be had
They covered most of the science subjects, or if one was a potential luvie one could do History ,literature the Arts and many other not proper subjects, ie none science.
To show how much progress this green and pleasent land has made, Draper resently got a prospectus of courses to be had by the keen adult student now at UoN.

Proggy Mat Making.
Aroma Therapy.
Rag Doll Making.
Flower Arranging
How to grow your own pea's in a bucket.
Advanced How to offer councilling to sad bastards.
Advanced how to be patronising to black people, part two.
And many other luvie huggy kissy subjects.
Yes indeed, adult education has certainly kept apace.
Still one else can one expect when Sunderland low tech academy for makums is a Univerity now. ;)

[ 27 November 2001: Message edited by: tony draper ]

27th Nov 2001, 18:47
Obviously there are no mackems among the PPRuNe membership...? :p

Tricky Woo
27th Nov 2001, 19:45
Herr Draper,

Actually, I didn't have to do a degree course either; the UoS kindly gave me an IT degree for taking three years off work, sitting on my bottom watching cricket, shagging, reading lots of nice novels, and generally having plenty of rest and relaxation.

There was a time, I've heard, when people actually had to read text books and attend lectures, before sitting difficult examinations. Fortunately for the lazy cynics amongst us, those days are past: Batchelor degrees are handed out freely to anyone who asks nicely. I've even heard that as a promotion, every tenth packet of Kellogs Cornflakes contains a BSC(Hons) in Sociology. Some sort of deal they have with the University of Bath, I hear.

Handy things to have for interviews, I find. F**king useless, otherwise.

I once had an interest in becoming an astrophysicist, by the way. However, bollocks 'A Level' results put paid to that one. I was a right lazy little f**ker at school, which may not come as a surprise to any of you lot. Of course I'd get sweeping A grades now, seeing as the modern A level exams are a series of dot-to-dot pictures that must be completed with a blunt crayon. Extra marks are awarded for colouring them in afterwards.

Er, so I've heard.


gravity victim
27th Nov 2001, 20:07
Who needs a Uni course to learn how to pea in a bucket? ;)

The Nr Fairy
28th Nov 2001, 11:01
And there was me thinking this thread was about one of the 1960's Bond girls . . .