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Found 27 results

  1. Back in March I was granted an observatory code ( Q69 ) by the Minor Planet Center ( MPC ) and since then I have been spending all my available telescope time ( which due the weather has admittedly not been very much ) to capturing images of asteroids, that the MPC is interested in recieving data for, and sending in the positions that I have determined. Mostly I have been focused on asteroids that have not been observed/reported on during their current return to visibility. 2014 LA21 was my first after getting my code ... Here I was the first to report astrometry for 2014 LA21 since 2016 - not like discovering a new comet I imagine but still, a small achievement and a nice feeling You may have noticed that I don't as yet supply any brightness data; this is because I have not figured out how I can do this reliably ( most of the asteroids I am chasing are very dim and so my 4 minute exposures tend to spread them a little making them hard to compare to nearby stars ). I have been getting reasonably good position data though, with a "variation to average path" across the samples of sub 1 arcsec ( typically less than 0.5 and sometimes down as low 0.15 ) .... Anyway, I was just thought I would let people know what I have been up to and why you have not seem me latley over on deep sky imaging forum and also, I was wondering if there is anyone else here on Stargazerslounge doing the same thing ...
  2. Hi, after almost 2 months of clouds there was finally a clear night in sight. I made most of it, imaging until clouds rolled in about 4 in the morning. I shot these using two telescopes at Taurus Hill Observatory. Its fun to operate two at the same time, luckily its possible from indoors. Ill also attach here light curve of variable star V0416 UMa that I made during the same night with C14 and SBIG ST-8 on Paramount ME mark II. Other images are taken with 16" f/8 Meade SCT and SBIG STT8300M on Paramount ME mark I. Im expecially happy with Dembowska, I tried to get complete light curve twice in 2017 but clouds or fog always ruined my photometry. Milkyway was also beautiful as always, I spent some time outdoors just looking at it while telescopes clicked more subs. Worth every second in the cold, windy night!
  3. Watch live : http://www.space.com/19195-night-sky-planets-asteroids-webcasts.html Orbit and info : https://watchers.news/2017/01/31/asteroid-2017-bs32-flyby-february-2-2017/ Cheers, Gary.
  4. A shot of Asteroid 2004 BL86 which passed us on the night of 26th January 2015. This was the first time I had seen an asteroid so I was very pleased to have captured a few shots. This image is made from 31 x 10 second exposures at 6400 ISO with 19 dark frames. Processing was done in Deep Sky Stacker (using one of the comet modes) and some final tweaking in Photoshop.
  5. Hey everyone, I searched the forum on this topic and was surprised to see that it wasn't being discussed! (at least not that I could find). I'll be using Skysafari pro to track its path, so I'm hopeful that I'll be able to find it... ... but then what's the best technique to image it? - Webcam? - DSRL in video mode? - Long exposure (guided)? What settings should we aim at? (ISO, exposure, etc) Anyone who hunted similar objects in the past who want to share their experience would be highly appreciated! Thanks Andrea
  6. On March 31, 2018 issue of the Minor Planet Circular, the asteroid previously known as 2001 HQ16 was named. (72834) Guywells is a Main belt asteroid with a diameter of 3-6 km. It last came to opposition in February 2018 when it reached 18th magnitude. Now it is moving through the constellation Cancer, observable at mag +19.5. (72834) Guywells was discovered by L Ball, in 2001.
  7. Just looking through some rubbishy images I don't plan to use from last year (2016 :p) and saw that in this one there is an asteroid, presumably, near the little fuzzy PGC13696 just off Electra. This area is rich in these little moving chaps, but stacking the images normally removes their trails. If you have your own M45 images, it can be worth setting three or four up, one from the start of the session, one from the middle, and one at the end, stretch them, then blink between them. If there is any asteroid activity your eyes should pick up the moving white dot quite easily. The necessary details for the image are: Date: 03/12/2016 Start time: 20:50 GMT End Time: 22:28 GMT Object travelling left to right as seen in the image. I'm pretty sure there is a way to go back and ID these objects at the MPC, anyone know how? Thanks Tim
  8. Near Earth asteroid (3122) Florence (3122) Florence is an Amor-type potentially hazardous asteroid with a diameter of 4.9 km. It will make a close approach to Earth on September 1st, at a distance of 0.05 AU (7.1 million km). During the close approach it brightens to 8.5 mag and becomes visible in small telescopes for several nights. Florence is the largest asteroid to pass this close to Earth since the first Near Earth asteroids were discovered over a century ago.
  9. You look to the South on a crystal clear night and spot Scorpius and Sagittarius gleaming above the horizon. Probably some of the best observable night sky objects are within these fine constellations. My 4.5 inch reflector was ready to go at 12 AM on Sunday morning, I aligned the stars Altair and Dubhe in the two star alignment feature on its GoTo mount . I was thinking of either imaging Saturn and Jupiter. But I chose to observe some of the dazzling and interesting objects in Sagittarius. I slewed my telescope to M25 first. a beautiful open cluster in the top part of Sagittarius' border. My next target was the fantastic Sagittarius Star Cloud or M24, an object I have been longing to see! All the objects had a dusty glow to them and since it was in the top part of the constellations boundary. Atmospheric haze did not affect it, after that. I decided to check out the stars that make the "Teapot" asterism in Sagittarius. I went through all that I could see from Ireland. I could see all the stars other than Kaus Australis . Following my adventure in Sagittarius I decided to move my way up the Milky Way into Scutum the shield. I observed the famous Wild Duck cluster in my highest magnification and what a sight it was! But, as I was browsing Stellarium for other interesting objects in Scutum I found something cool indeed. What was it? It was the asteroid Juno! Juno was and is currently magnitude +9.9 near the Wild Duck cluster. I star hopped my way using Stellarium as a map. And I found it within a few minutes. It may not of looked the part but hey, in astronomy one of the main things you must understand. It's not about what it looks like, it's what it represents. With that I decided it was time to go in as it was 1:30AM. Thank you for reading! Clear skies to all Adam
  10. Hi all, Was taking some white light sunspot snaps with my SCT and DSLR and spotted an object moving fast across it. Had a look at CalSky.com but couldn't find anything obvious (though I'm not sure I'm using the site right). Anyone got any idea what this might be? Satellite or...other? Cheers Jim
  11. A GIF animation of 322 x3 second frames showing NEO 3200 Pheathon during its close approach in December last year. It's taken me a while to get around to putting this together... Frames were taken during the early evening of December 14th 2017 between 18.11.06 UT and 19.44.57 UT as the object crossed the Perseus/ Andromeda border. The field is just under a degree wide. What I think is a sporadic meteor crosses the field about a second in. I could not find a satellite ID for that time and region, nor do I think it is a Geminind as it seem to come from the wrong radiant. Any comments or observations welcome.
  12. A very belated heads-up for the documentary on BBC2 last night, well worth catching up on iPlayer: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b08r3xhf The investigation and underwater geology of the Chicxulub asteroid impact crater, confirming just how quickly this affected the global environment, and changed Earth's history path.
  13. This is a composite image made from 15 shots of Asteroid 2004 BL86 as it whizzed over Blackheath, London on 26th January 2015. One 10 second shot at 6400 ISO was taken every minute.
  14. Had a bash at some minor planet spotting on Friday night/Saturday morning. Pointed the scope at a fairly nondescript bit of space between Gemini and Cancer and started taking pictures. The star in the middle of the field is (I believe!) asteroid 4 Vesta at a distance of some 227 million kilometres. I took five frames over a period of twenty-five minutes before the clouds came over to see what I was doing, but even over this short a period, you can see some elongation of Vesta as it drifts relative to the fixed background stars. Interesting way to spend some time since the weather wasn't ideal with partial, intermittent cloud. Since I was looking for motion between frames, I didn't mind if I lost half my subs to the weather gods! Telescope was a William Optics FLT-98 with AFR-IV focal reducer Camera was a ZWO ASI1600MC-cooled. No flats or darks, as I was just mucking about really. Would have liked to get a couple of hours, but if the weather had been good enough for that, I'd probably have gone nebula-hunting. It was interesting to deliberately go hunting for a specific asteroid; normally, I just find them after the fact, messing up my pics of something else!
  15. Link to amusing story https://www.theregister.co.uk/2019/07/17/wasteroid_qv89_earth/ Cheers
  16. Despite the forecast that it would clear in the late evening, it didn't happen (typically) until I had packed up and gone indoors, well after midnight. So I tried to make the best of it looking fairly low to the south to find Florence, and there she was! Here's a stack of 108 x 6s subs starting at around 23:39 in the evening, and an animation made from every fifth shot (I can't seem to flip it the right way around, sorry.) As well as clouds there was (of course) a passing satellite... C9.25 Hyperstar with SX Ultrastar camera and Explore Scientific UHC filter. Animated GIF made online at http://gifmaker.me/
  17. NEO Asteroid 3122 Florence should become visible in binoculars next week. It will pass at 18.4 LD (0.047 AU, 7 million km) at 12:06 UT on 2017 September 01. The magnitude predictions are uncertain, but although it may be near the limit of visibility for smaller binoculars, it should be relatively easy in 70mm or larger apertures at least until the Moon begins to interfere at the beginning of September. The asteroid, which has a diameter somewhere between 4 and 9 km (we should know this more precisely after this pass) is named for Florence Nightingale and will not pass this close again for another 50 years. Although it is classified as a PHA (potentially hazardous asteroid) it will not become an impact threat at least for the next few centuries. Chart generated with Guide v9.1.
  18. As Vesta is currently at approximately magnitude +7.6 and going through Gemini for most of April I intend to try to track it (weather permitting) over this time if possible. As this will be my first ever asteroid hunt and potentially first one ever seen, are there any tips apart from sketching its position against the stars to be able to do this? Below is the fov in my Opticstar AS90S with my 18mm Celestron X-Cel LX EP that I intend to use for this if possible.
  19. Vesta, The only bright asteroid I have not observed yet. After observing Ceres in Cetus and Pallas in Equuleus, the time has come and at a great time as well to observe the 2nd largest asteroid in our Solar System. I have put aside observing the main planets in the winter sky such as Venus, Uranus and Neptune and have started to challenge myself with looking for these mysterious wonderful objects. And Vesta is next on my list. Vesta is currently in Cancer the crab, which is starting to emerge into our evenings with other well known winter constellations such as Orion, Gemini, Canis Major and Canis Minor. Though Cancer is a very faint constellation and even I myself can sometimes be searching around for it, but I over came this problem by looking for the two brightest stars in Gemini, Castor and Pollux, and using them as pointers to Alpha Cancri. But Cancer possesses probably some of my favorite night sky objects, Tegmine or Zeta Cancri, a beautiful 6th magnitude triple star system. Messier 67 a fantastic open star cluster. But my favorite object by far, The Beehive Cluster. A beautiful, breathtaking, dazzling display of stars in the shape of a beehive, When people say to me around the Christmas holidays and it's a clear sky outside and I'm asked " Show us something through your telescope! " With no hesitation I am already slewing to the Beehive Cluster. And now, Vesta is paying a visit to glorious cluster. From now to mid December, Vesta will be to right of the Beehive and in early December it will be at it's closest to it. And at magnitude +7.1 on December 12th it will blend in quite nicely with the outer stars in the cluster. After it starts to move away from the Beehive and altogether leave Cancer and slowly ascending it's magnitude to +6.4 but only having a disc of 0.5 arc seconds.. It will be a nice object to observe over the winter, and a great photo opportunity with the Beehive! Clear Skies!
  20. So last night at 8:10 PM I decided to point my telescope to Alpha Piscium to start star hopping to Ceres. I hopped through a few 7th magnitude stars until I came across 3 stars in a crooked line. The one on top of this line was Ceres. I decided to show my Father, since he always wanted to see an asteroid with his own eyes so why not show him the biggest? At magnitude +7.6 it isn't at it's brightest but its magnitude is slowly rising back up to 8th magnitude so it's now a good time to observe it! The first image is exactly what I seen through my telescope ( Celestron 114 LCM 4.5 inch reflector) using Stellarium's optical view and the other images are just highlighting where Ceres is. I enjoyed looking at Ceres and I can't wait to watch it's path across Cetus! Clear skies!
  21. There is an asteroid occultation on 2013 April 30 that will be visible from parts of the UK. See http://www.astrosurf.com/eaon/Cartes/April%202013/22185_Stiavnica_3UC251-097751.htm 50mm or larger binoculars recommended.
  22. The Kingsmen are at it again! And this time, they've been ordered to chase down the rapidly moving interstellar asteroid 'Oumuamua to make analyses and to make sure it doesn't collide with any of the planets in our solar system. It includes images from the ESO, NASA/JPL-Caltech, Pan-STARRS1, and the University of Wisconsin. I wrote the storyline, did the character and spaceship illustrations, performed the voice characterizations, created the AfterFX space animations, and composed the music (as The False Dawn).I hope you enjoy this little adventure! The Kingsmen, excelsior! Reggie
  23. Did anyone try observing the predicted occultation of a faint star by the asteroid Massalia on 17th Nov 2017 at around 01.30 am? I saw a prediction and tried to observe it, but was defeated by my telescope misting up after a long spell in the open, despite a dew shield.
  24. I've been following somebody on Facebook who regularly images asteroids, and indeed has identified a few of his own. But this got me to wondering, do these orbiting bodies, of which there must be many thousands, all reach the same kind of velocity? I guess there are various factors involved. This new asteroid from another galaxy is also intriguing. For what it is worth, here are a couple that I have observed in the past:
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