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About DarkerSky

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  1. I've been invited to help out at a solar eclipse outreach event on Friday March 20th in Dunster, West Somerset. Sadly I can't make it. Is there anyone in the Somerset / Devon area who would be interested in going along to impart their knowledge to onlookers that morning? Baader eclipse glasses are being supplied, and there should be a 6" dob with a full aperture solar filter available too. Seb
  2. Just heard the news. Shocked. My thoughts go out to Colin's family, friends and colleagues. From my knowledge he was a driven guy passionate about British space exploration. In January this year I was fortunate enough to attend a talk by Colin's project partner on the Beagle 2 mission. It was a fascinating insight. He will be much missed.
  3. Super sketches Mike. The detail you're capturing is breathtaking. I struggle to see the 'bridge' between M51 and its satellite gx in my skies. I've got a question for you - will PM.
  4. Perfect! Totally agree. I've gone for Mag +10.5 tonight.
  5. Got this for the first time tonight in a 12" dob. Mag+10.5 is my estimate. Seriously bright this one and looks superb! Gives me goosebumps just thinking about the processes that were going on 11.8 mly ago to create this view! Amazing.
  6. Hi AG. The SN in M82 is a type Ia supernova. I think the typical light curve on these is an increase over 1-2 weeks from discovery to max brightness and then a gradual decline over several more weeks / months.
  7. Yes. I've seen white barges on a number of occasions in the past couple of months - 22 December undoubtedly being the best view of two of them shortly after GRS rotated off the disc. Jupiter never fails to delight!
  8. Just viewed this using my 6" full aperture solar filter. An impressive sight.
  9. Good to hear Lovejoy spotters are out despite the Moon. I too was watching Lovejoy last night in near full moon conditions. It is sure moving at a pace. Half an hour at low power through an 8-inch dob revealed appreciable movement against the background stars. Coma has grown and I was getting glimpses of a tail, which I think will look much more impressive once the moon wanes a bit.
  10. Got SN2013EJ visually last night...well, in the small wee hours of the morning when Pisces and M74 were high in the sky, far away from the LP of Luton! M74 is always such a difficult one to pull out, but managed it in my 12" dob. Switched up to x150 magnification and skecthed this view. The SN is marked.
  11. That's a great capture Dave. Definitely keeping an eye on this over the next few months.
  12. Alpha Herculis is in my top 5 summer doubles. Rusty orange primary with a yellow-green secondary. Separation is about 4.8 arc seconds so will look pretty neat in your 200p at a moderate power.
  13. Ah, the gigantic galactic brain! My pet name for the Crescent nebula. Bagged this last year in a 12" scope. You'll need a pretty dark sky with a 4" frac. The easiest part of the nebula to see is a thin ribbon of material pushing out either side of what appears to be a close double star on the north-western side of a diamond-shaped asterism of stars. You'll see it curving up and around, almost joining up two of the stars in the asterism. I used a lumicon deep sky filter on this as I felt it gave me better contrast. Averted vision might bring out the 'brain' structure that envelops the rest of
  14. Well spotted. I saw this too. Using the info from ESA and CalSky it looks as if Albert Einstein will be chasing the ISS around until docking on 15 June. Could be quite a special sight on Fri 14 June as I think they'll be within a minute of each other.
  15. Got a fantastic view of M65 tonight with my 16" from a moderately dark sky. Studied it for ages but the SN was beyond me. At Mag 16 it was always going to be an outside chance.
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