Mr. Christopher Go, a local amateur astronomer from Cebu City and a member of the Astronomical League of the Philippines, delivered a public lecture titled Adventures of an Amateur Planetary Imager on November 20, 2009 at UP NISMED’s Science Teacher Training Center Auditorium. One hundred forty-one (141) school children and their teachers coming from Metro Manila public elementary and secondary schools attended the lecture.
Mr. Go related how, on February 27, 2006 (universal time), he made the biggest discovery of his life on the surface of the planet Jupiter: Oval BA. According to Go, the oval spot was white in November 2005, slowly turned brown in December 2005 and started to redden after several weeks. He immediately alerted the Association of Lunar and Planetary Observers (ALPO), the first to do so. Oval BA, also known as Red Spot Jr. or Red Jr., is believed to have been born in 2000 when three smaller spots collided and merged. For this, as well as for his long-term contributions to planetary imaging and his exceptional studies, this Physics graduate of the University of San Carlos in Cebu, received the ALPO’s 2008 Walter Haas Award and a Presidential Medal of Merit from President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. Recently, he joined the Hubble Heritage Team to image Saturn using the Hubble Space Telescope. His enthusiasm and encouragement fired up the audience of young people who asked him countless questions and had their pictures taken with him.