CBA Pahala

Pahala Weather has been moved to a New Page!

Pahala is a small (pop. 1600) village about 4 miles west of the Ka'u (ka-oo) Desert and the Great Crack - the Southwest Rift zone of the Kiluea Volcano. The recent eruption has been on the summit and the east rift zone, about 40 miles east of Pahala. The skies are dark and often clear at night, except for some vog, although the days have a pattern of increasing clouds until sunset when it begins clearing.

This climate is ideal for coffee, which is becoming an increasing part of the economy of the area, although macadamia nut orchards are the predominant land use.

The Punalu'u Black sand beach is about 5 miles down the hill. There, turtles rest.

CBA Pahala operated from 2003 to 2013, when it closed due to poor climatic conditions (the vog caused the mirror coatings to degrade).

Copyright 2011 by Dom Legaspi

NGC 300, 14 minute exposure
G16 KAF1602e

NGC 55, 3min 45 sec.

Pahala is located about 5 miles north of the Punalu'u Black Sands Beach Park, noted for Green Sea Turtles that rest on the beach, oblivious to the tourists that are allowed to look but not touch.

The countryside around Pahala is uninhabited.

The 44 cm Newtonian has been reconfigured to a cradle mount. The legs have been shortened one foot and the south end will be put on a platform about 2 feet high to adjust the telescope to Pahala's 19 degrees latitude.

It was partially disassembled and here helpers Tom, Dom, Bert and Jerry discuss the loading operation.
The telescope in the container shipped out on Matson's Maui on January 14, 2003. It arrived in Pahala on the 21st.

On Jan. 22, 2003 the tripod and cradle were removed from the container and assembled. The telescope was out of the container and on the pad on Jan. 23 and Champion Helper Roger stayed past sunset elevating the telescope and putting a frame under it to hold the south end elevated. Alignment and finishing work done by Feb. 1 when first images were obtained.

The goal of CBA Pahala is to collect light curves of stars of interest such as HQ Mon from March 3, 2003. Here the star varied a few percent in brightness with a period of around an hour all the while brightening 25% over the 5 hour data run.

An open house welcomed CBA Pahala neighbors on Feb. 22 where we looked at M32, M1 (see below) and M37. Routine data collection was also in progress and work has been done on KQ Mon, HQ Mon, PQ Gem, DW Cnc, EC1056-29, EC1158-31, PU CMa.

Fun images - I don't work all the time!
The Kiluea Eruption Update will give details on the latest activity of the local erupting volcano.
Click on the hot lava (left) for an animation of a minute of the oozing lava. Active lava flows show up black in the Navy nightime image below, left. CBA Pahala faces little threat from lava from Kiluea, but Mauna Loa, which last erupted in 1984, lies directly above us. It has been inflating since May 2002. An eruption in the next few years is possible.
Lew's other CBA site:
CBA Concord
Pahala Weather
Lew's Affiliation with the
Center for Backyard Astrophysics
Pahala Plantation Cottages are Hawaii vacation rental homes. Tourist information is also available here.
Other vacation rentals are available in Punaluu.
Lew's favorite coffee!! Rusty's Hawaiian - locally grown & processed.

Back to Lew's Home Page