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russ

Mars today

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Had my first peak of Mars for 2007. Set the alarm for 3.30am and came outside to find a superb sky, except for some worrying clouds to the west. Got the scope up and running ASAP.

Boy is Mars tiny :shock: Didn't waste anytime and went straight in with 200x. Still tiny but a hint of the markings. Noticed that the atmosphere was incredibly steady so pushed the mag quite a bit. Went for 300x (10mm + 3x barlow) next......no probs! The 8" handled that with ease and the image looked better. The markings were slightly easier to see now but they weren't that well defined, still more of a hint. Pushed again to 450x but although the image was very good it didn't show anything new.

Quite a shock to see just how small Mars is. At least it's at its best in the early hours when the skies are steadiest. Which means there's hopefully scope to push the mags.......because you need to! 8 arc secs is puny :D

I'm glad i got up though, well worth it. And without doubt the best time of the day. So quiet and peaceful. And the sunrise was awesome :shock:

Russ

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Nice report Rus!

Might get the 2mm EP when it gets abit higher at a more socialable time lol.

Could you see the ice caps?

Kain

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Nice report mate. I knew it was going to be small, but if your say ing its small.. well I have to see for myself I guess.

Rob

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450x! Wow - well done!

It will be quite a wait till it gets as big as the full moon again :D

thanks for the report

Andrew

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Nice report Rus.. I had a couple of looks at Mars about six weeks ago and was also surprised by how small it was. Might have to leave it a while longer before having another go.. and get some shorter focal length EP's.

Scott

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Great early Mars report Rus. It certainly whets the apartite for later on in the year.

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Nice report Rus - I reckoned that I could make out the phase, a pole cap and just the slightest hints of surface markings when I had a look at the planet a few nights ago.

If you think Mars is small right now try Uranus - 3.6 arc secs !!! - just a tiny blue dot even at 200x - but definately not star-like.

John

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