systemhalted by Palak Mathur

Dark Skies - Need them now more than ever

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Who will be a better witness of tragedy of light pollution than someone who takes the load of equipment every night to his backyard and point it to the Skies in hope to see a nebula, Galaxy or any other distant object.

There is light everywhere, and you want it to go off. One can witness the lights from the street lamp, light from the strip mall little further, light from hundreds of halogen lamps from the nearby stadium and you just wish that your city did not have this much “growth”.

Light Pollution and relative darkness in the Amateur Astronomy community is measured on Bortle Scale, created by Mr John E. Bortle in 2001. There are 9 classes of skies in this scale. Lower the number, darker and better the skies in that particular observing site. When I moved to my current home back in 2017, it was Class 4 defined as Rural and Suburban transition sky. Now it is Class 5, a suburban sky. And in coming years, it might further deteriorate.

It is important that some actions be taken so that we can save the beauty of night skies for the generations to come.

I still vividly remember the power outages back in India, lying on the terrace and looking at the stars. The whole sky was for you to observe. The frustration that the power outage used to cause seems trivial compared to the frustration that I now have with the night sky visible from my backyard.

But even then it is beautiful and mesmerizing. There is nothing that tell and forces and pleads to the people to dare to dream than the beauty of a night sky with it’s beautiful nebulas, distant galaxies, star clusters and the wish to explore them all.

Astronomy   Behavior