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Hi All, I had another go at imaging Venus through the 14" dob. This time I spotted Venus when the sky was still quite bright and Venus was quite high in the sky. Before imaging I had a look at it through the eye piece and what I saw was amazing, even upto 471X it was crisp and massive in the FOV with a hint of shading near the terminator. I tried it using a 2X powermate and the X-Cel 5mm eyepiece, delivering 660X. The view was only just marginally softer than when using the 7mm LV, so I was quite happy with that, but visibly the disc was only slight larger at 660X vs 471X, so I preferred to view it through the 7mm & 2X PM combo. I imaged Venus through a 3X TV Barlow and the IS DMK618 through the Astrodon UV, Baader IRPass 685nm and a Neodymium/Green filter combo, later combining the stacked videos as RGB (IR NdG UV). I attached the color as well as the UV stacked frame. Thanks for looking. Mariusz
Observation 18 July 2017 Date: 18th July 2017 @ 18:50 – 22:20AEST Location: Backyard Equipment: 14” Skywatcher GOTO Dobsonian, Televue 11mm Nagler T6, Celestron 5mm, LV 7mm, Televue 2X Powermate, Televue 2.5X Powermate, Televue 3X Barlow, Baader Neodymium, Baader Contrast Booster. Jupiter: At 19:08 there was a dark mark on the Northern equatorial belt, initially I thought that it was a darker area within the cloud belt but later using the “Gas Giants” app I found out that it was the shadow of Io. On the right side of the planet Io was rising, slowly moving away from Jupiter while observing for the next 30 minutes or so, not often does one experience a moon rise on a different planet. Europa was on the opposite side moving closer to the planet. Ganymede and Callisto are further away from Jupiter on the right, same side where Io was rising and opposite side of Europa. There was a substantial amount of detail visible within Jupiter’s atmosphere. There was cloud band shading and visible different coloring, lines and irregularities in the atmosphere. The most details visible was in and above the NEB, different colouring, from brown to yellow to even a blueish tint just above the NEB. The northern cap was slightly shaded but the southern cap was distinctly darker than the norther cap and easy to see with tiny spots on it, very subtle but definitely made the cap look slightly textured. Southern cloud belt was visibly irregular across the planet. The GRS was not facing toward us until later at 21:27 but at this time Jupiter was low in the west, 20-30 degrees, not far from mountains so it was not as crisp as at 19:00 but still quite a bit of details are visible and a lot better than last observing session. The best magnification to use tonight is 300X initially than 150X to 235X when lower in the horizon to look at the GRS. Saturn: At 22:02 Saturn was as high as it’ll be tonight and it looked crisp and detailed. The Cloud band on the globe was clearly visible, the Cassini division was visible nearly all the way around in the rings, the innermost ring to Saturn looked a bit darker then the others and there was a tiny visible shadow on the rings behind Saturn with 5 moons, Titan Enceledus, Tethys, Dione and Rhea orbiting it. Magnified 300X and 330X the views were sharp and clean, whereas at 375X and 470X was a near crisp view as Saturn was overhead near zenith. 660X was softer with hints of Cassini division within the rings but its impressive with how big it is in the FOV. To get Saturn to look so sharp, I was fine adjusting the collimation using the primary mirror while defocussing Saturn and adjusting until Saturn defocussed symmetrically in both focus travel directions. Neptune: Neptune was the last object for tonight observation but it was just a blueish fuzzy dot, it was low in the eastern horizon, and I guess the lightning activity out to sea coupled with the picking up wind didn’t help. I Magnified it 300X, might have been bit much for it in the current position, but no matter what, I doubt that less power would show any more detail. Mirrors might not be as perfectly collimated as I thought since when defocussing on Jupiter’s moons to fine tune collimation, were defocussing into a ring with the central obstruction in the middle but not defocussing “round” but more to what appeared to be oval, defocussed symmetrically but oval. I think that the 14" SW still hasn't shown me the best it can do and I will need to play and practice with the collimation some more. Newtonian collimation is definitely a fair bit more involved than SCT collimation. Thanks for reading, Clear skies.