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Star Count 2019

Monday, 28 January 2019 10:23

Take Part: 2 February - 23 February
You can take part in #StarCount2019 and help us find our darkest skies, to ensure more of us can experience this natural wonder.

Our Star Count will take place this February, with support from the British Astronomical Association. We’re asking you to look up at the night sky and tell us how many you can see in Orion. You can do this from anywhere in England.
Your results will help us to create a map showing the best places to enjoy the stars. And it will also support our work to combat light pollution and reclaim our dark skies.

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How to take part in Star Count 2019:

Try to pick a clear night for your count, with no haze or clouds, then wait until after 7pm so the sky is really dark. We’ll be accepting results taken from Saturday 2 February until Saturday 23 February, but the best time to do the count is from 2-9 February, when the moon is smallest, so the skies are darkest! 

Once you've found your spot:

Orion rectangle CPRE square

  1. Looking south into the night sky, find the Orion constellation, with its four corners and ‘three-star belt’. 
  2. Take a few moments to let your eyes adjust, then simply count the number of stars you can see within the rectangle made by the four corner stars. You should not count the corners, but you can count the three stars in the middle – the belt. See illustration below.
  3. Make a note of the number of stars seen with the naked eye, not with telescopes or binoculars, and then submit your results on our online survey form. To give you an idea, if you see less than 10 stars, this indicates severe light pollution, and if you can see over 30 stars, you're looking at a truly dark sky!
  4. Share your experiences with others on social media using #StarCount2019 @CPRE @BritAstro

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And don't forget to check back to see the national results and how your area compares to the rest of the country!

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