Thursday 14 April 2016

Astrognome Scrapbook George Alcock's 2nd Nova

George Alcock Nova Vulpecula April 14th 1968

He was Britain’s greatest visual observer. He made 10 discoveries 5 comets and 5 Novae, he even surpassed Caroline Herschel who in the 1780s discovered 8 comets.  He was born in 1912 and died in 2000. He made his discoveries using only binoculars.

George's second nova was discovered a mere 9 months after the first. This one was in Vulpecula (the Fox) and was designated LV Vul. It was discovered on 1968 April 14th, rising to a peak of mag 4.8 a week later, on April 21st. He first Novae discovery in Delphinus (the Dolphin) in July 1967 and designated HR Del was still visible in the sky, there were two British naked eye novae, only 15 degrees apart, in the April 1968 dawn sky!!

George has often stated that the sight of those two novae together was "the greatest thrill of my observing career" The proximity of LV Vulpecula to the bright nova of 1670 was also of considerable importance to George.

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