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Bio: Auke Slotegraaf

Background

There's always been something special about the stars, and whatever it is, it infected me while still in primary school. My first proper optical device was an ancient pair of 8x30 binoculars which showed me some of the most amazing things I've ever seen. In fact, attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion couldn't hold a candle to what I witnessed, scanning along the southern Milky Way, alone late at night in the dark.

Not long afterwards, I received as a birthday gift a 2-inch Tasco refractor (with a variable zoom eyepiece and alt-az micro-adjustments), which meant now I would get even less sleep than before.

When I entered high school I heard that the school had an observatory. Early one Wednesday evening my mom dropped me off at the school, neatly dressed in formal step-outs. The science teacher and an older boy arrived soon after, and then the ritual of opening up the telescope began. I was seriously impressed. On a German equatorial mount was a 15.5-inch f/9 Newtonian. The ladder almost reached the heavens.

The massive thing was deftly swung and pivoted about and ended up trained on Venus, dropping down behind the distant trees. And then it was up the ladder to the Jewel Box. And that was it we had to pack up and go home.

Not long after that evening, the keys of the observatory were safely in my pocket. A few nights later, a friend and I bravely opened up the telescope and he pointed it to the our first real target: M42. The nebula was low-down, and the finder wasn't aligned to anything useful. He took the first look, and gasped. I probably wet myself. Then it was my turn. Oh My God, there is was, the flowing scalloped nebula, bright as in my dreams. I nudged the scope a bit to compensate for the Earth's turning, and then it really hit me: we'd only been looking at the southernmost tendril of the nebula. It was almost sickening. It was certainly a confirmation of an addiction. Or rather, the affirmation of a life-style.

The 15-and-a-half-inch delivered many, many deliriously happy hours in the years ahead - the remainder of high school and then university were activities to occupy the time between sleeping and observing.

Sadly, the telescope no longer exists. A few years ago, the optics were stolen and the building eventually fell into disrepair and was demolished.

But the Orion Nebula, even without spacecraft ablaze, has never been brighter.

Personal web site

Sketches

Objects sketched: 79

C 1326-609, Cl Bochum 10, Cl Pismis 16, Cl Ruprecht 160, Cl Ruprecht 53, Cl Ruprecht 84, Cl Trumpler 11, Cl VDBH 56, ESO 124-14, ESO 124-15, ESO 124-18, ESO 220-19, ESO 220-23, ESO 220-8, ESO 269-85, ESO 269-90, ESO 314-2, ESO 315-14, ESO 324-29, ESO 92-23, IC 1995, IC 2395, IC 2488, IC 2553, IC 2714, IC 4312, IC 4651, NGC 1165, NGC 1217, NGC 1365, NGC 1380A, NGC 1389, NGC 1531, NGC 1532, NGC 2220, NGC 2325, NGC 2439, NGC 2527, NGC 2559, NGC 2609, NGC 2609, NGC 2632, NGC 2670, NGC 2792, NGC 2808, NGC 2849, NGC 2910, NGC 2982, NGC 3201, NGC 3242, NGC 3293, NGC 3372, NGC 3372, NGC 3372, NGC 3372, NGC 3621, NGC 3680, NGC 3766, NGC 3766, NGC 3882, NGC 3885, NGC 3909, NGC 3923, NGC 3936, NGC 4103, NGC 4103, NGC 4463, NGC 5061, NGC 5101, NGC 5128, Slotegraaf J0941-5013, Spiral Planetary, NGC 2451, NGC 1976, NGC 5156, NGC 5234, NGC 6231, NGC 5786, NGC 6326.

Journals

Journal entries: eight

  1. Sutherland (2009 Nov 15)
  2. Sutherland (2009 May 26)
  3. Sutherland (2009 Feb 27)
  4. Sutherland (2009 Jan 23–29)
  5. Middelfontein, Sutherland (2009 Jan 01)
  6. Mount Ceder (2008 Dec 22)
  7. Stellenbosch (2008 Oct 25)
  8. Sutherland (2008 Apr 10-12)

Objects recorded

Objects logged: 715

37 Cluster, 47 Tuc, Andromeda Galaxy, Auriga Salt-and-Pepper, Barnard 103, Barnard 112, Barnard 133, Barnard 235, Barnard 256, Barnard 263, Barnard 283, Barnard 314, Barnard 48, Barnard 50, Barnard 53, Barnard 84A, Barnard 85, Barnard 90, Barnard 91, Barnard 92, Barnard 93, Barnard 95, Barnard's Galaxy, Bernes 149, Bernes 157, Blue Planetary, Box Nebula, Butterfly Cluster, Butterfly Cluster, Calabash Nebula, Cat's Paw Nebula, Ced 122, Ced 211, Circinus Galaxy, Cl Basel 1, Cl Basel 11A, Cl Bochum 10, Cl Bochum 15, Cl Bochum 3, Cl Bochum 7, Cl Collinder 135, Cl Collinder 197, Cl Collinder 213, Cl Collinder 236, Cl Collinder 271, Cl Collinder 272, Cl Collinder 277, Cl Collinder 316, Cl Collinder 338, Cl Collinder 350, Cl Collinder 401, Cl Collinder 465, Cl Collinder 466, Cl Czernik 38, Cl Dolidze 26, Cl Dolidze 27, Cl Dolidze 28, Cl Dolidze 29, Cl Dolidze 30, Cl Dolidze 31, Cl Dolidze-Dzim 7, Cl Feinstein 1, Cl Haffner 13, Cl Haffner 15, Cl Harvard 10, Cl Harvard 16, Cl Harvard 20, Cl Harvard 5, Cl Hogg 14, Cl Hogg 15, Cl Hogg 16, Cl Hogg 18, Cl Hogg 22, Cl Kron 3, Cl Lynga 14, Cl Melotte 101, Cl Melotte 105, Cl Melotte 227, Cl Pismis 10, Cl Pismis 11, Cl Pismis 12, Cl Pismis 15, Cl Pismis 16, Cl Pismis 8, Cl Ruprecht 1, Cl Ruprecht 105, Cl Ruprecht 108, Cl Ruprecht 11, Cl Ruprecht 110, Cl Ruprecht 113, Cl Ruprecht 116, Cl Ruprecht 119, Cl Ruprecht 127, Cl Ruprecht 160, Cl Ruprecht 161, Cl Ruprecht 165, Cl Ruprecht 20, Cl Ruprecht 21, Cl Ruprecht 30, Cl Ruprecht 31, Cl Ruprecht 53, Cl Ruprecht 56, Cl Ruprecht 64, Cl Ruprecht 71, Cl Ruprecht 76, Cl Ruprecht 77, Cl Ruprecht 79, Cl Ruprecht 81, Cl Ruprecht 82, Cl Ruprecht 83, Cl Ruprecht 84, Cl Ruprecht 86, Cl Ruprecht 87, Cl Ruprecht 88, Cl Ruprecht 94, Cl Ruprecht 97, Cl Ruprecht 98, Cl Stock 14, Cl Stock 15, Cl Trumpler 11, Cl Trumpler 12, Cl Trumpler 15, Cl Trumpler 17, Cl Trumpler 20, Cl Trumpler 21, Cl Trumpler 22, Cl Trumpler 23, Cl Trumpler 24, Cl Trumpler 28, Cl Trumpler 29, Cl Trumpler 30, Cl Trumpler 33, Cl Trumpler 34, Cl Trumpler 6, Cl Trumpler 7, Cl VDBH 164, Cl VDBH 23, Cl VDBH 34, Cl VDBH 56, Cl VDBH 66, Cl Waterloo 6, Cleopatra's Eye, Clown Nebula, Coal Sack, Coalsack Cluster, Cooling Tower, Crab Nebula, Dark Doodad, DCld 263.2+01.6, de Mairan's Nebula, Delle Caustiche, E 3 Cluster, Eagle Nebula, Eight-Burst Nebula, ESO 124-14, ESO 124-15, ESO 124-18, ESO 124-19, ESO 131-15, ESO 173-10, ESO 173-12, ESO 173-4, ESO 209-19, ESO 213-11, ESO 213-2, ESO 215-2, ESO 219-39, ESO 219-41, ESO 220-19, ESO 220-23, ESO 220-8, ESO 227-4, ESO 261-7, ESO 269-80, ESO 269-85, ESO 269-90, ESO 270-14, ESO 277-17, ESO 278-3, ESO 278-4, ESO 314-2, ESO 315-14, ESO 324-24, ESO 324-29, ESO 332-15, ESO 38-7, ESO 558-11, ESO 92-22, ESO 92-23, eta Carinae Nebula, Flame Nebula, Fornax A, Fornax Dwarf Elliptical Galaxy, Fourcade-Figueroa Shred, Gem Cluster, Ghost of Jupiter, Graff's Cluster, Great Orion Nebula, Hamburger Galaxy, Heart-Shaped Cluster, Helix Nebula, Horsehead Nebula, HS 397A, IC 1276, IC 1290, IC 1295, IC 1459, IC 2448, IC 2553, IC 2621, IC 2631, IC 2714, IC 2948, IC 4268, IC 4312, IC 4499, IC 4637, IC 4642, IC 4651, IC 466, IC 4662, IC 4665, IC 4706, IC 4732, IC 4776, IC 5181, IC 546, Jewel Box, Lacaille I.10, Lacaille I.11, Lacaille I.12, Lacaille I.14, Lacaille I.3, Lacaille I.4, Lacaille I.7, Lacaille I.8, Lacaille I.9, Lacaille II.10, Lacaille II.2, Lacaille II.3, Lacaille II.4, Lacaille II.6, Lacaille II.7, Lacaille III.10, Lacaille III.11, Lacaille III.13, Lacaille III.2, Lacaille III.3, Lacaille III.4, Lacaille III.8, Large Magellanic Cloud, LDN 557, LDN 582, LDN 617, LH 7, Little Gem Nebula, Magakian 716, Magakian 770, Messier 10, Messier 107, Messier 12, Messier 14, Messier 15, Messier 18, Messier 19, Messier 2, Messier 21, Messier 23, Messier 25, Messier 26, Messier 28, Messier 30, Messier 35, Messier 41, Messier 46, Messier 47, Messier 48, Messier 5, Messier 54, Messier 62, Messier 74, Messier 77, Messier 79, Messier 80, Messier 9, Messier 92, Messier 96, mu Normae Cluster, NGC 1049, NGC 1084, NGC 1097, NGC 1165, NGC 121, NGC 1217, NGC 1249, NGC 1261, NGC 1269, NGC 1291, NGC 1305, NGC 131, NGC 134, NGC 1352, NGC 1360, NGC 1365, NGC 1379, NGC 1380, NGC 1380A, NGC 1381, NGC 1382, NGC 1386, NGC 1387, NGC 1389, NGC 1392, NGC 1399, NGC 1404, NGC 152, NGC 1520, NGC 1531, NGC 1532, NGC 1537, NGC 1546, NGC 1549, NGC 1553, NGC 1566, NGC 1574, NGC 1617, NGC 1647, NGC 1664, NGC 1672, NGC 1746, NGC 176, NGC 1807, NGC 1817, NGC 1848, NGC 1851, NGC 1868, NGC 1914, NGC 1964, NGC 1997, NGC 2010, NGC 2015, NGC 2023, NGC 2060, NGC 2069, NGC 2093, NGC 2100, NGC 2108, NGC 2130, NGC 2132, NGC 2135, NGC 2147, NGC 2154, NGC 2156, NGC 2158, NGC 2159, NGC 2160, NGC 2164, NGC 2172, NGC 2186, NGC 2194, NGC 2204, NGC 2214, NGC 2231, NGC 2243, NGC 2251, NGC 2298, NGC 231, NGC 2311, NGC 2325, NGC 2335, NGC 2343, NGC 2345, NGC 2353, NGC 2354, NGC 2355, NGC 2374, NGC 2395, NGC 2414, NGC 242, NGC 2427, NGC 2439, NGC 2451, NGC 246, NGC 247, NGC 2483, NGC 2527, NGC 2539, NGC 2568, NGC 2571, NGC 2601, NGC 2609, NGC 261, NGC 2610, NGC 2627, NGC 2642, NGC 2645, NGC 265, NGC 2658, NGC 2659, NGC 2669, NGC 2670, NGC 2671, NGC 269, NGC 2711, NGC 2712, NGC 2713, NGC 2781, NGC 2788, NGC 2792, NGC 2808, NGC 2811, NGC 2818, NGC 2835, NGC 2836, NGC 2848, NGC 2849, NGC 2851, NGC 2855, NGC 2863, NGC 2866, NGC 2867, NGC 288, NGC 2881, NGC 2884, NGC 2889, NGC 2890, NGC 2899, NGC 2902, NGC 2907, NGC 2910, NGC 2915, NGC 2924, NGC 2925, NGC 2932, NGC 294, NGC 2972, NGC 2982, NGC 2992, NGC 2993, NGC 2997, NGC 300, NGC 303, NGC 3033, NGC 306, NGC 3105, NGC 3114, NGC 3136, NGC 3195, NGC 3201, NGC 3211, NGC 3240, NGC 3290, NGC 330, NGC 3311, NGC 3312, NGC 3324, NGC 333, NGC 3330, NGC 333B, NGC 3390, NGC 3446, NGC 346, NGC 3519, NGC 3572, NGC 3603, NGC 361, NGC 362, NGC 3621, NGC 3623 (in Leo Triplet), NGC 3627 (in Leo Triplet), NGC 363, NGC 3680, NGC 369, NGC 371, NGC 376, NGC 3882, NGC 3885, NGC 3904, NGC 3909, NGC 3923, NGC 3936, NGC 395, NGC 3960, NGC 4052, NGC 406, NGC 4103, NGC 411, NGC 416, NGC 417, NGC 419, NGC 422, NGC 4230, NGC 4337, NGC 4349, NGC 4361, NGC 4372, NGC 4439, NGC 4463, NGC 45, NGC 456, NGC 458, NGC 460, NGC 465, NGC 4696, NGC 4699, NGC 4739, NGC 4754, NGC 4762, NGC 4785, NGC 4815, NGC 4852, NGC 487, NGC 4945, NGC 4945A, NGC 4976, NGC 5026, NGC 5043, NGC 5061, NGC 5064, NGC 5078, NGC 5090, NGC 5101, NGC 5138, NGC 5156, NGC 5168, NGC 5189, NGC 5206, NGC 5234, NGC 5237, NGC 5244, NGC 5266, NGC 5284, NGC 5286, NGC 5288, NGC 5299, NGC 5307, NGC 5315, NGC 5316, NGC 5359, NGC 5460, NGC 55, NGC 5617, NGC 5715, NGC 5749, NGC 5764, NGC 5786, NGC 5800, NGC 5822, NGC 5823, NGC 5846, NGC 5850, NGC 5882, NGC 5927, NGC 5946, NGC 5979, NGC 5986, NGC 5999, NGC 6005, NGC 602, NGC 6026, NGC 6031, NGC 6067, NGC 6101, NGC 6115, NGC 613, NGC 6134, NGC 6139, NGC 6144, NGC 6152, NGC 6153, NGC 6167, NGC 6178, NGC 6192, NGC 6193, NGC 6200, NGC 6204, NGC 6208, NGC 6216, NGC 6235, NGC 6249, NGC 6250, NGC 6253, NGC 6256, NGC 6259, NGC 6268, NGC 6281, NGC 6284, NGC 6287, NGC 6293, NGC 6318, NGC 6322, NGC 6325, NGC 6326, NGC 6342, NGC 6352, NGC 6355, NGC 6356, NGC 6362, NGC 6366, NGC 6384, NGC 6388, NGC 6400, NGC 6404, NGC 6416, NGC 6425, NGC 6426, NGC 6439, NGC 6441, NGC 6453, NGC 6469, NGC 6492, NGC 6496, NGC 6502, NGC 6507, NGC 6517, NGC 6539, NGC 6541, NGC 6544, NGC 6546, NGC 6553, NGC 6558, NGC 6559, NGC 6568, NGC 6569, NGC 6583, NGC 6584, NGC 6596, NGC 6624, NGC 6633, NGC 6638, NGC 6639, NGC 6642, NGC 6644, NGC 6645, NGC 6649, NGC 6652, NGC 6664, NGC 6673, NGC 6681, NGC 6683, NGC 6704, NGC 6709, NGC 6712, NGC 6716, NGC 6723, NGC 6744, NGC 6752, NGC 6774, NGC 6852, NGC 6982, NGC 6984, NGC 7094, NGC 7213, NGC 7232, NGC 7233, NGC 7410, NGC 7492, NGC 7793, NGC 796, NGC 897, NGC 936, NGC 955, Nova Cen 1895, omega Centauri, omicron Canis Minorum Cluster, omicron Velorum Cluster, Pinwheel Cluster, PN G027.3-03.4, PN G047.1-04.2, PN G229.6-02.7, Praesepe, Ptolemy's Cluster, RCW 58, Rich Man's Jewel Box, Running Chicken Nebula, S Normae Cluster, Saturn Nebula, Sh 2-54, Sh 2-64, Silver Coin, Skiff J1053-6435, SL 256, SL 539, Slotegraaf J0545-1553, Slotegraaf J1137-6735, Slotegraaf J1500-5500, Small Magellanic Cloud, Sombrero Galaxy, Southern Pinwheel Galaxy, Southern Pleiades, Spindle Galaxy, Spiral Cluster, Starfish Cluster, Swan Nebula, Table of Scorpius, Tarantula Nebula, tau Canis Major Cluster, Tom Thumb Cluster, Tonantzintla 1, Triangulum Pinwheel, Trifid Nebula, Tuft in the Tail of the Dog, Wild Duck Cluster, NGC 6934, Dumb-Bell Nebula, NGC 6738, Al Sufi's Cluster, NGC 1981, E Nebula, NGC 5897, NGC 2903, Messier 78, NGC 1514, Bug Nebula, Messier 72.

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