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Phone apps to help measure light pollution

  • albertw
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Hi All,

Now that the dark evenings are returning and people will have more opportunity to get out under the stars I wanted to remind you of a couple of mobile phone apps that can be used to measure how dark your skies are.

Both of these apps are integrated into the "Globe at Night" project and the readings you submit will appears on www.globeatnight.org/map/

Firstly, for iphone only, we have The Dark Sky Meter App, itunes.apple.com/us/app/dsm-iyl-2015/id626796278?mt=8 . This works by using the phones camera to estimate sky brightness and works like a Sky Quality Meter. I don't have an iphone so I can't comment on how good a job it does!

Secondly, for both android and iphone is the "Loss of Night" app. lossofthenight.blogspot.de/2015/01/brief...ss-of-night-app.html This works by prompting you with a star chart and asking if you can see fainter and fainter stars to determine the naked eye limiting magnitude. The app also supports entering data from an SQM if you have one. The app has a 'nighttime' option which dims the screen and uses only red colours to help preserve your dark vision.

And for those that don't use smartphones, 'Globe at Night' produces starcharts to allow you to estimate the limiting magnitude and submit your readings via their website www.globeatnight.org/5-steps.php

I'd be grateful if you could pass this on to your members and others who may be interested so we can help build up a better picture of light pollution across the country.

Best Wishes,
~Albert
--
www.darksky.ie
Albert White MSc FRAS
Chairperson, International Dark Sky Association - Irish Section
www.darksky.ie/
The following user(s) said Thank You: dave_lillis, michael_murphy
7 years 1 month ago #104656

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Replied by Seanie_Morris on topic Phone apps to help measure light pollution

I'll definitely lend a 'hand' at an investigation where I live. On some of the clearest nights, I have seen things to limiting magnitudes that have stumped me in my location. It will be on the Android app.

Seanie.
Midlands Astronomy Club.
Radio Presenter (Midlands 103), Space Enthusiast, Astronomy Outreach Co-ordinator.
Former IFAS Chairperson and Secretary.
7 years 1 month ago #104665

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  • albertw
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Replied by albertw on topic Phone apps to help measure light pollution

I'll definitely lend a 'hand' at an investigation where I live. On some of the clearest nights, I have seen things to limiting magnitudes that have stumped me in my location. It will be on the Android app


Thanks Seanie. It'd be great to get more data from around the country.
Albert White MSc FRAS
Chairperson, International Dark Sky Association - Irish Section
www.darksky.ie/
7 years 1 month ago #104672

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Replied by Seanie_Morris on topic Phone apps to help measure light pollution

Thanks Seanie. It'd be great to get more data from around the country.


Can you create a Facebook page and/or a project page on a site of yours, and that way I will add something on an article here on IFAS to get the ball rolling on it?
Midlands Astronomy Club.
Radio Presenter (Midlands 103), Space Enthusiast, Astronomy Outreach Co-ordinator.
Former IFAS Chairperson and Secretary.
7 years 1 month ago #104682

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Replied by RandomPillars on topic Phone apps to help measure light pollution

Yes Albert. Ill get a reading from west county dublin. Was out last night, under clear skies and can verify the light pollution here is atrocious.

Sean
"... quit trying to upset and disturb Dr. Venkman..."
7 years 1 month ago #104702

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Replied by albertw on topic Phone apps to help measure light pollution

Can you create a Facebook page and/or a project page on a site of yours, and that way I will add something on an article here on IFAS to get the ball rolling on it?


www.darksky.ie/phone-apps-to-measure-sky-quality/ Let me know if you had something else in mind - it's no problem to add more to he site.
Albert White MSc FRAS
Chairperson, International Dark Sky Association - Irish Section
www.darksky.ie/
7 years 4 weeks ago #104723

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Replied by Seanie_Morris on topic Phone apps to help measure light pollution

No, that seems fine, just so that feedback can be given. However, there's no ability to leave a comment and offer interaction (the section at the bottom to be logged in to leave a comment seems to be for webpage administrator only). A corresponding Facebook page might help, purely from the point of view that photos of light pollution along with readings (including screenshots of the data output) can be posted.

Just a two cents worth!

Seanie.
Midlands Astronomy Club.
Radio Presenter (Midlands 103), Space Enthusiast, Astronomy Outreach Co-ordinator.
Former IFAS Chairperson and Secretary.
7 years 3 weeks ago #104759

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Replied by Seanie_Morris on topic Phone apps to help measure light pollution

No, that seems fine, just so that feedback can be given. However, there's no ability to leave a comment and offer interaction (the section at the bottom to be logged in to leave a comment seems to be for webpage administrator only). A corresponding Facebook page might help, purely from the point of view that photos of light pollution along with readings (including screenshots of the data output) can be posted.

Just a two cents worth!

Seanie.
Midlands Astronomy Club.
Radio Presenter (Midlands 103), Space Enthusiast, Astronomy Outreach Co-ordinator.
Former IFAS Chairperson and Secretary.
7 years 3 weeks ago #104760

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Replied by Conn Buckley on topic Phone apps to help measure light pollution

Hi Al, Just downloaded Loss of the Night and will get some readings from 6 miles south of Limerick city. Conn
Conn Buckley.
7 years 3 weeks ago #104791

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Replied by albertw on topic Phone apps to help measure light pollution

Hi Al, Just downloaded Loss of the Night and will get some readings from 6 miles south of Limerick city. Conn


Great! Thanks Conn.
Albert White MSc FRAS
Chairperson, International Dark Sky Association - Irish Section
www.darksky.ie/
7 years 3 weeks ago #104803

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Replied by albertw on topic Phone apps to help measure light pollution

These apps have just got an update:

The new version of the app for Android is now in the play store! Thanks to those of you who helped us test for location problems and the new version of the app. If you experience a "jittery" behavior with the new version, please try quitting and restarting the star search (more info). A new version of the app for iOS that fixes two minor bugs will also come out early next week.

This weekend the moon will set early enough to make observations in the early evening. The current observing period will be open until about March 11. In the last observing period, 146 usable observations were submitted.

This month marks the 10 year anniversary of the Globe at Night citizen science project. Globe at Night was one of the projects that inspired the creation of the Loss of the Night app, and it's easy to take part. Since the Globe at Night time series is longer than the Loss of the Night time series, it would be very helpful if you could find a moment to make an observation between March 1-10. All you have to do is be able to find Orion in the sky and fill in a simple web form. Try making an observation with both methods, and see if you get the same answer!

Best wishes for starry skies,

Christopher Kyba
userpage.fu-berlin.de/~kyba/

Helmholtz-Zentrum Potsdam
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Albert White MSc FRAS
Chairperson, International Dark Sky Association - Irish Section
www.darksky.ie/
6 years 7 months ago #105552

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