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About scarp15

  • Rank
    White Dwarf

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  • Interests
    Astronomy , cycling and hill walking
  • Location
    Newcastle Upon Tyne
  1. scarp15

    The gift of excellent transparency

    Just been rifling through past notes and agree with John, a UHC was beneficial although I had preferred the view of the Flame without. Interacting between two eyepieces at 142x and 184x, revealing, a little distance from Alintak, first the dark central lane, brighter lobe regions and radiating branches. The 10mm (184x) conveyed the best contrast and overall view. Also quite agree Neil with your previous comments that gently manoeuvring the scope 'catching the movement of something in the eyepiece' is effective at picking up faint objects. I can also understand that the H-beta with a large exit pupil, will have conveyed that impression of the Flame, particularly considering that transparency was very good.
  2. scarp15

    The gift of excellent transparency

    Fabulous report Neil and congratulations for gaining the 'little black sock puppet', a fine description. Understandably your eyes would have become attuned after examining the California. It was blustery but transparency can be good in such circumstances. That dobsonian is really delivering as are your observing skills, the calibre of challenging targets gained, testament to that. The Flame is definitely an object that you determine through trial and error as to which eyepiece etc is most applicable for gaining optimum observation. It took myself a few observation attempts and taking regard to, such as Gerry's excellent descriptions, before I determined the best focal length for the scope I was using. Great result on Stephens Quintet, that comet and everything. I haven't got out for a while, only being clear when I have work the following day etc, so this report is a reminder as you say, why we love this hobby.
  3. scarp15

    Moon Lovely NOW, Plus Change Of 'Scope

    Nice description Doug, prompted me to nip out for twenty minutes with the binoculars, between the cloud toing and froing, the moon as you say is always a delight.
  4. scarp15

    Campbell's hydrogen star

    That's right Neil SH2-91 and Gerry's account is a very good guide for this. In the vicinity are other Sharpless objects such as SH2-94 and SH2-96. As with all of these difficult or to put another way, elusive objects, its just about getting your eye to become more attuned to the yet dimmer and fainter, which you understandably are doing. Worth an attempt, could be one to wait until next season maybe as best elevated as possible. It took myself some effort to grasp and comprehend, I am still learning to see it and distinguish in its features but I now have the competence to focus upon it at least once or twice each season. This is what I really enjoy, testing your eyes (and I would bet that your younger eyes will probably be more able than my own), judgement and ability, in the right conditions many of these - more perceived challenging observations, are in fact probable. Also using to the very best the equipment that you currently have, venturing to dark skies, fully dark adapted pupils, the right placement for the target, patience and always honing your observation skills and ability- that is all it is and needs to be about.
  5. scarp15

    Campbell's hydrogen star

    Very interesting account and link Neil. This tiny reddish planetary had escaped my attention, focused more on the close by and not easy observation, super nova remnant that comprise the Little Veil. Also as Mark has remarked, the Minkowski's Footprint, another interesting object to pursue, a lot to go on in this vicinity. Anyhow as you describe, increasing power enables the gas glow to become apparent, one to note (along with Minkowski's Footprint) for another time. Good that you are gaining a little more on the California, repeated attention will increase definition as the season evolves, quite looking forward to this to.
  6. scarp15

    Stephan's Quintet??

    The brightest member, which we have established is NGC 7320, from what I recall became feasible to observe with direct vision, the faint hazy glow more apparent with magnification. I felt that I was on the cusp of seeing the others perhaps with averted vision and increased magnification, my 6mm had locked into the focuser due to a cold wind. Interesting as mentioned that a 10" scope in good circumstances and effort can gain much for this challenging observation.
  7. scarp15

    Stephan's Quintet??

    Hi Doug, I had a go for this just under a year ago and as you say, initially, the spiral galaxy NGC 7331 is easy to locate. In the vicinity there lies Stephenson's Quintet and for my search I increased the magnification up to 313X. There was a cold gusty wind sweeping through the valley I was established in, I did however encounter a faint glow but could not distinguish an absolute separation of this group except that I felt assured that I had profiled at least NGC 7317, also just to the south east I think gaining NGC 7340. During this night (24th Nov) I was using my 14" dob and was experiencing SQM-L readings of between 21.2 - 21.4, so apart from the cold gusts conditions were pretty good. Could do with another night like that, its not been so great with opportunities lately up here, at least on non work periods. I expect that those on here that specialise on Galaxy observing will in due course contribute, meantime good luck with this.
  8. scarp15

    Barnard's Loop Observers Analysis

    It is interesting that Barnard's Loop retains some elusive presence even with the employment of NV assisted astronomy. Friends who have a place on the approach to Kielder commented that Thursday night had been excellent, the sky full of stars. Certainly night time temperatures had dropped away for a couple of days and I imagined being where I wanted to be targeting Orion in the early hours. Now the temperature has climbed again and thin cloud is continually present.
  9. scarp15

    Barnard's Loop Observers Analysis

    Quite understand concerning the California Nebula, having observed this with a TV-76, (former company) 2" Lumicon H-beta filter. Gaining excellent transparency is key, a challenge perhaps considering the recent Met Office analysis of UK weather forecasting for the past decade.
  10. scarp15

    Barnard's Loop Observers Analysis

    Thanks for all the comments and that is highly reassuring concerning the surprise view one night with the TV- Ranger. Quite looking forward to gaining an opportunity to have a go. I know where precisely I will be heading, just need all the other factors to come into play.
  11. scarp15

    Cleaning primary mirror

    The cotton wool ball approach really is non essential unless there are blemishes, even then. Surgical cotton is recommended, standard ought be fine but as said if I were to repeat I'd use my finger tips, main rule of thumb is to apply no pressure.
  12. scarp15

    Cleaning primary mirror

    Not a task that requires to much frequent attention, I soak mine, lying flat, in a small children's inflatable paddling pool, using distilled marine, which I obtain from a local Garden Centre. I then drip dry upright, which can be further dried with a cold blow setting hair dryer. If you have spare water (usually obtainable in 5L reusable containers), store in cool dark location for future use. I had once used the cotton wool ball process, applying no pressure just lifting off the surface once soaked. Here's a picture of the paddling pool.
  13. In recent posts, there are impressive accounts, such as Gavsters Night Vision assisted observations and accompanying phone pictures, profiling the large arc of this emission nebula in Orion. For seeking a direct observation, Barnard's Loop is elusive to the visual observer, yet there are a few tricks and techniques as well as steadfast determination - a trait that all visual astronomers possess by necessity. In the right circumstance, the brighter northern portion, drifting between reflection nebula M78 and towards open cluster NGC 2112 is detectable as a faint grey veil or haze, eliminating or reducing background stars. This is not an easy observation, a H-beta filter assists and there is much more that remains either invisible or at the very least at the very fresh-hold of formulating an observation with any conviction. Or is there? Read Mel Bartels Feb 2015 to Feb 2018 observational report spanning the Orion Eridanus Super Bubble, sh2-245, sh2 246 and the southern arc of Barnard's Loop, using a wide field, 6" F2.8 reflector. Here he was able to make a sequence of field sketches that were organised into a mosaic, which enhanced a capable observation. Observers skill, full dark adaptation and SQM 21.5 + skies equally enabled this possible. My own plan this winter is to try and pursue more of Barnard's Loop from a dark location that will require wild camping, so I hope to gain at least SQM 21.5. Using my 85mm refractor, I will focus attention on the Southern Loop where lies the 'brightest' section between Rigel and Saiph. Of course transparency has to be very good and I have an open mind as to if anything will be discovered. Who else is excited at the prospect of the challenge confronting Barnard's Loop and more so, what if anything do you hope to gain? NV users are welcome to contribute.
  14. scarp15

    Dark sky fix

    Good blend and assortment of observations in the restrictive time frame and neat idea to engage with the small frac on a dark sky trip.
  15. Night Vision pursuit of the Sharpless catalogue is going well Alan, interesting to hear of your accounts for the more challenged observations in conjunction with the defined and engaging NV assisted observations.

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