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About Fermenter

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  1. I was just coming here to post about this event myself, looks like I was 18 minutes too late. Here's the NPR article that first notified me to the news. It's pretty awesome. http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/10/16/557557544/astronomers-strike-gravitational-gold-in-colliding-neutron-stars
  2. True, -7.3 would be very bright at night. I think that simply seeing a satellite in the sky during the day is impressive, but I understand and agree with your point. I definitely still need to bag one at night as well. Thanks for the reply.
  3. There is an Iridium flare predicted for two mornings from now for my location. The flare is going to happen a little less than 2 hours after sunrise (at 09:15:56), and the flare's magnitude is predicted to be a -7.3 magnitude, and at Elevation 76°. Is this something that will be easily visible given that it is essentially full daylight at that point? I've never seen an Iridium flare before, and the new fleet of satellites which are going to replace this fleet will not flare like these. So I want to make sure that I see one before they are all decommissioned and gone. PS - The "Heavens Above" Android app is pretty sweet, they really took full advantage of a smartphone environment with that app's design.
  4. I figured that was going to be the case, based on people's descriptions of their viewings. That sucks, but at least it will be coming back around next month. I'll have to make sure to keep up with its progress this time to not miss my opportunity, if there is one. Even if I had been aware of it prior to now, we've had such bad weather the past week and a half that I wouldn't have been able to observe it. I really hope that in February both the comet and the weather cooperate to allow me to capture an image of it. I've never seen a comet through my telescope, so I'm really looking forward to seeing it and sharing it with my fiancée.
  5. Is it too late for me to see this comet? I was planning to set up my telescope later this week, Thursday through the weekend, to get some images of Venus. Then I discovered this comet. Unfortunately, at my usual location right in my front yard, I have tall trees to the West. But for the chance to spot this comet I will take my SN-6" to another location. Also, is the comet going to be visible again later in the month, but in the morning before sunrise instead of early evening just after sunset? Hopefully I'll have a chance to image this comet as well, I've never even attempted spotting or shooting a comet before. But I'll be using my Sony A7RII via prime focus with either a 2x or 5x Barlow T-Mount.
  6. Interesting. Is it possible those were Delta Aquariids instead of Perseids? Do you recall what time stamp they occurred? Edit: BTW, good tip on not looking at the radiant. We noticed the same thing, looking overhead was more fruitful, we just laid directly on our backs with our feet pointing East Northeast. Most of the good meteors weren't anywhere near the radiant, though they were flying away from it.
  7. Well, the cloud cover did manage to break right around 4am. So my fiancée and I went across the street to a park, laid down and managed to spot many meteors. We didn't keep count, but saw a least a couple dozen, including several long-burning "Earth grazers" that left a trail of smoke. We also spotted two satellites, I'm not sure which but I'm going to load Stellarium tomorrow and try to figure out what the second satellite we spotted was, as it lasted for quite some time and crossed most of the sky (possibly the ISS?). We also brought my green laser pointer and I taught her how to spot Cassiopeia, how it points to Polaris, and she even spotted the Pleiades herself, at first asking if it was the little dipper (not an unreasonable assumption for someone who knows no constellations). All told, it was a wonderful viewing session even if we did have to wait until almost dawn to get it in.
  8. Has anyone watched this and spotted some good meteors? I would like to share this with the neighborhood FB group for folks that weren't able to get out and see any meteors. I have spotted a few. There are a couple short small ones, in the lower right area around 1:40:08 and then again like 15-20s later. And a bigger brighter one on the right half of the screen around 1:41:35.
  9. I'm very jealous of everyone who is spotting even just one, let alone 25-40+ meteors. I had planned on running a star party for the neighborhood tonight, set up my telescope, teach the kids how to find Polaris and give everyone views of the Moon, Saturn & maybe Mars though the scope. But on Monday a heavy downpour swept in on us in the evening and then we checked the weather report with a 50-90% chance of rain every day for 2 weeks. So we postponed the star party until 9/9, when we'll have a first quarter moon and Saturn & Mars will still be out. Wouldn't you know it, no rain today after big rains every day so far. But my fiancée and I just went outside to try to spot some meteors and there is cloud cover everywhere. So we're still clouded out of a view even if it's dry. Very disappointing. I'm going to stay up and keep checking the sky every 30 minutes or so, hoping to catch a break in the clouds. They are moving quickly, but it's a big blanket. I wish you all better viewing than we have here.
  10. So she likes that I am going to be using this for teaching kids about astronomy, and is willing to sell it to me for less than $100, even giving me the chance to buy it for less than the 3 other people she has interested in it. Is this something that is worth picking up for say, $75? Or is it really not worth even having? It seems this is the old DS generation 1 mount. AN achromatic frefactor. A simple handbox with up/down/left/right buttons to move the scope, not technically a computer, not a go to mount. But it does actually use the same handbox interface as the newer ETX-90 EC telescopes. It's compatible with the Autostar #497. So I could attach a current generation "AudioStar", so for like an additional $150 turn this into a computerized goto mount. However, I don't think I will put good money after bad, and just have this as an extra scope for viewing the moon during star parties and the like. Since it's a refractor and my current telescope is a SN, perhaps it might see some service as a terrestrial scope as well? So, any thoughts on what to offer? Is $75 worth spending to add this old little refractor to my collection? Thanks.
  11. Hehe, you like that? I didn't have much of a choice. What I was doing there was a quick test of my new solar filter the day before the Mercury transit, and I needed to be in the sunlight. It was like that for 5 minutes until the Sun dropped below the treeline. Definitely not something I would normally do.
  12. My first, and only, telescope is a Meade LXD55 Schmidt Newtonian 6" reflector. I bought it when I lived in a high rise in Seattle and would watch the moon set across the sound, watching craters disappear and reappear from behind trees. I moved to NYC for 6 years and while living there I left the telescope at my parents' house in suburban Maryland, where I would occasionally set it up when I visited and do a little observing and astrophotography. When I moved to Georgia I took the telescope from my parents and have been using it bit more now that I have a house and am not living in an apartment in the city that never sleeps. It's a great telescope, that's given me 13 years of on and off service. I expect to get at least another 12 years out of it. It's great for observing with an eyepiece and for prime focus astrophotography. To date, I've never used the motorized mount, but just picked up some batteries as I plan to use it while hosting a star party for the neighborhood kids. It'll be a lot easier to talk and teach if the scope can keep the object being observed mostly centered itself, rather than me having to adjust the scope every few minutes. Initially I just had a 26mm eyepiece, but later added a 7mm for more power. Then I added a 2x Barlow T-mount for doing photography. This year I added a solar filter for the transit of Mercury. I just picked up a cheap ($18) 5x Barlow T-mount adapter and will see if that does anything for photographing the planets, as they occupy a very small amount of my cameras' sensors at 2x. Though I am worried the optics aren't going to be very good, but for less than 20 bucks I couldn't pass up the chance to try it. 13 years, 5 different states, this telescope has really performed well for me. I will never get rid of it, though I do plan to upgrade to something larger. When we buy a house I would like to build a permanent observatory in our backyard where a larger telescope will be permanently installed. This telescope will find use in that observatory as well, but its size is great for mobility as well.
  13. She replied saying it is 3". Any thoughts on what a fair price to offer is? Thanks. I wouldn't be getting this for myself to do much observing, just for setting up a second telescope at star parties that I host. Is it even worth getting this scope for that?
  14. So I have someone offering to sell me a Meade electronic digital DS refracting telescope for $100. Still trying to determine the size, is it a 60 or 90, but what do you guys think is a good price for one of these? Obviously it's not as nice as my current scope, but I'd be getting it to have an extra telescope for star parties that I throw, not for doing my own personal observations and photography. So, what do you guys think is a good price for a 60, and for a 90? Just so I'm ready to answer when she tells me the size. I've attached the photos she sent me, looks like it's probably a 60? I dunno, I am not good at estimating these things. Thanks
  15. Fermenter


    A collection of photos created both with and without a telescope. Landscape photographs inherently give a sense of place. I enjoy using the cosmos to also give a sense of time.
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