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What does a meteorologist mean by partly cloudy and how does it differ from mainly clear ? I really enjoy my astronomy but some times I do believe I'm bonkers. I've spent an hour setting up my scope in hope that partly cloudy means there are gaps between clouds and that when and if it moves on to mainly clear the gaps will be bigger and last for longer. Currently in Lowestoft partly cloudy means I can just about see Vega, Deneb and Altair. I'm sitting in my backyard writing this on my laptop by red torch light -I'm holding the torch in my mouth and starting to dribble. All this grief because I fancied imaging asteroid Florence as it goes whizzing by, a 3 mile wide rock 7 million kilometres distant. As my mate Big Phil from Sheffield would say "Why do you want to take hundreds of photographs with really expensive equipment that mainly comprise white dots on a black background" He has got a point!
Do you know what, I think it is clearing a bit so 3 star alignment here I come.
George trying to take pictures in Lowestoft
This is something I have asked a few times. It is obviously different to our idea of clear. Occasionally I have had "Clear" but a heavy fog. As fog is a local event it is not covered by the weather forcast usually. So Clear and you cannot see the other side of the road.
I suspect a trip to Exeter and the main Met Office might help but equally I suspect that it is almost arbituary and could depend on who wrote up the forecast.
In worst case Clear could be not raining and good horizontal visual clarity.
Big George has a point.
Thanks for the comment. The weather did improve sufficiently for me to get a few images of NEO Florence in between the clouds. By heck that lump of rock is moving at a pace. Couldn't find it in my big bins but go-to technology and my 127mm. Refractor did the trick. I think the moon light was a bit of an issue. Tonight much clearer but moon very bright and setting later. Have to say after last night falling into bed at 3:15 am and someone's car alarm going off at four, two late nights in a row are not an option. Tomorrow I will have a go at putting together an asteroid animation.
Best regards from George by the sea and now in bed.