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New Windsor, Maryland (USA)

Bailey's Beads during total solar eclipse
Image of "Bailey's Beads" just prior to 2nd Contact (start of totality) during the August 21, 2017 total solar eclipse. MTO viewed the eclipse 3.7 miles southwest of Dorchester, Nebraska and experienced 2m 33s of totality. Bailey's Beads are caused when the last sliver of sunlight is broken up by the mountains and valleys along the outer edge of the lunar disc.

The insert at right is the Kaguya/LRO limb profile chart showing the predicted orientations of mountains and valleys around the moon's edge, and taking into account its librations, at the time of eclipse as viewed from a specified location on the earth's surface. It also models the expected location of Bailey's Beads just prior to 2nd contact. The chart is from an interactive Google map of the central path of the eclipse prepared by Xavier M. Jubier.

Image taken with a Canon DSLR camera through an unfiltered Astro-Physics 5" F/8 Starfire refractor (1/250 sec. ISO 100).

Marstown Observatory is located in Carroll County, Maryland one mile from the unincorporated hamlet of Marston. The nearest town is historic New Windsor (established in 1797) located four miles northwest of the observatory. The closest major cities are Baltimore (30 miles ESE) and Washington, DC (50 miles S).

Transit of Mercury Across the Face of the Sun

Transit of Mercury
The May 9, 2016 transit of Mercury as photographed by Nicholas Lara with a Smartphone held up to the eyepiece of his 8-inch Orion Dobsonian reflector telescope. Image was taken at the Eldersburg branch of the Carroll County library, one of several locations where members of the Westminster Astronomical Society had set up telescopes for public observing of the event.

Click on images to open larger image (247 KB) in a new window. (Photo credit: Nicolas Lara)

Partial Solar Eclipse at Sunset

Partial Solar Eclipse
A sunset partial solar eclipse was viewed from MTO on October 23, 2014. Although the horizon was cloudy, fleeting glimpses (such as this one) of the sun with its right-hand edge dented from the occulting lunar disk, were visible between breaks in the clouds and trees. A sheet of welder's glass was dangled in front of a telephoto lens in this image.

Click on images to open larger image (2.1 MB) in a new window. (Photo credit: MTO)

Total Lunar Eclipse at Sunrise

partial phase totality setting in clouds
A beautiful total lunar eclipse was observed prior to sunrise on October 8, 2014. Partial eclipse (left); total eclipse during morning twilight (center); and totally eclipsed moon setting into the clouds just prior to sunrise (right). These images were shot using a Borg brand 5-inch APO refractor.

Click on image to open full resolution image in a new window. (Photo credit: MTO)

MTO would like to thank everyone who donated their time and materials, or helped in the construction of the observatory..
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