Hi! My name is James Kevin Ty. My interests are in astronomy, photography and travels. I started astronomy when I was still 11 years old. Between that time to around 1982, I settled to learning the constellations, planets and the Moon using just a pair of opera glass. A year later, I saved a little money to buy myself a cheap 20x50 refractor. With this scope, I was able to view the Moon and the bright stars. Eventually, I discovered how bad chromatic aberration ruined the image. I then urged my father to buy me a pair of 16x50 binoculars and I used this to further my observations of the bright star clusters and nebula.
It was in the year
1985 that I joined the Philippine Astronomical Society. During that time, Comet
Halley was around to keep us busy. It was then that I bought a 50mm f/16
refractor on an altazimuth mount and I was very excited to view the night sky.
When I turned the scope to the planet Saturn, I was very delighted to see the
ringed planet! Although the view was only at 100x, the small image of this
planet was forever etched into my mind. Next came the famous M42, the Great
Orion Nebula, in the constellation of Orion. I was disappointed to know that
there was no color in this nebula! I thought that my scope was damaged as it was
not showing me what I saw in my astro books. I learned later that the photos in
the books were taken with film, which was more sensitive than our naked eye to
capture the colors.
During my early stage as a member of the society, Edwin Aguirre and Imelda Joson taught me to be serious in this field and I am thankful for their advice. Both of them are now residing in the U.S. and are working at the Sky & Telescope magazine as associate editor and photo editor respectively. I also met Jun Lao and he gave me some ideas on how to photograph the stars, thus saving me a lot of time to learn and start from scratch. I later developed my skills in astrophotography and had been shooting deep sky objects, comets, planets, eclipses, etc. whenever the weather was clear during weekends. After observing the total solar eclipse in General Santos , Cotabato last March 18, 1988, I got hooked to observing solar eclipses. I lef several PAS eclipse expeditions such as the 1995 expedition at Khon Buri, Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand; the 1997 expedition at Darhan, Mongolia; the 1998 expedition at Pulau Dayang, Malaysia : the 1999 expedition in Stuttgart, Germany and the 2009 expedition at Wuhan, Hubei Province , China.
In 1998, I decided to setup PHILASTRO-FORUM MAILING LIST so that local amateur astronomers can have a mailing list to discuss and share their astro experiences on any and all astro related topics. I was also responsible for setting up the first PAS webpage that introduced the society to the cyber world also on the same year. The PAS awarded me the Padre Faura Astronomy Medal Award in the year 2000. I was the president of PAS from 1997-2003.
In 2000, I decided to switch to digital astrophotography and started out using a Nikon Coolpix 995 compact digicam to shoot my favorite subject, the Sun, as well as high resolution lunar imaging. After getting acquainted to the compact point and shoot digicam, I made another jump into the Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR) camera in 2003 and used it to image deep sky objects such as nebula, galaxies, star clusters as well as solar system objects such as the Moon, the Sun, comets, etc. I was the first one in the country to use the DSLR system in astrophotography. Later, I also added computer color webcam such as the Toucam Pro 740K and the monochrome ATK-1HS II to image the planets as well as for solar and lunar work.
I set up the
Astronomical League of the Philippines, Inc (ALP) together with 12 other amateur
astronomers in 2003. I am the president of the organization since its inception.
I plan to lead another total solar eclipse expedition, specially with members
of the ALP, to the May 20, 2012 Annular Solar Eclipse in Xiamen , China as well
as to the March 9, 2016 Total Solar Eclipse in Borneo.
A Proud Member Of The
since May 15, 2008
All the pages, text and images found in this site are (c) Copyright 2000-2012 by James Kevin Ty. Any use of these materials in any form without the prior written consent or knowledge of the author is a violation of Philippine and worldwide copyright laws and may cause the author to send lawyers after you. Since the author is a very reasonable and approachable person, ask his permission and might probably work out a reasonable arrangement.