Today I am humbled and honored by noted astronomy author, lecturer and former editor at both Sky & Telescope and Astronomy Magazines, James Mullaney, FRAS.
James “Jim” Mullaney has honored me with a recommendation to change the name of the faint “Virgo Diamond” to “Ivester’s Diamond” as a tribute to my determination and perseverance to promote and keep this most interesting and difficult deep-sky object alive.
Jim believes that without my tireless efforts over the past twenty-plus years, the “Diamond” would have been lost to time, therefore escaping the joys and challenge to the astronomical community, for now and the future.
His other reason: It is often confused with the large grouping of constellation stars, also known by the same name.
I became interested in the small, faint asterism, back in the early 90’s. It’s been my desire to promote this wonderful object for over twenty years. I’ve written articles for club newsletter’s, the Las Vegas Astronomical Society, Observer’s Challenge, Orion Telescope and Binocular, and others.
The following document was filed today (May 19th 2015) by James Mullaney for the recommended change:
Dear Fellow Stargazers:
As you may know, over the years I’ve given names to nearly a dozen deep-sky wonders. These include the Blinking Planetary (NGC 6826), the Winter Albireo (h3945), Lassell’s Delight (M35) and Peltier’s Variable (R Leonis). Nearly all have been recognized/adopted, including among others by Sky & Telescope itself. Now it’s time to add another one! I’ve changed the name of the Virgo Diamond to Ivester’s Diamond as a well-deserved and long overdue honor to my good friend and fellow observer Roger Ivester. Surely anyone reading this is aware of his amazing efforts to promote this tiny asterism.
Note that making this change will now also eliminate the confusion with the vastly larger original Virgo Diamond asterism.
James (Jim) Mullaney
Fellow Royal Astronomical Society of London
A Pencil Sketch which was drawn by myself back in 2012, when I first saw the 5th star after over 20 years of failure. To enlarge…double click on the following sketch.
Image of the very faint “Diamond” by Dr. Don Olive, taken from Australia
The following is an article which I wrote for Orion Telescope and Binocular a couple of years ago concerning the “Diamond.” Please click on the following link for the full report…
For some reason the following Orion Telescope and Binocular’s link will not open on the LVAS FB page, however, if not, just go to: http://www.rogerivester.com