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saturn observation

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Hello everyone!I need help. I will buy the skywatcher heritage 100p.I want to know how small saturn will (will i be able to see the rings?)and also how the other planets will look.Thank you!  The specifications are below: Magnifications (with optics supplied): x16, x32, x40 & x80

Diameter of Primary Mirror: 100mm (4")

Telescope Focal Length: 400mm (f/4)

Eyepieces Supplied (1.25"): 10mm & 25mm

x2 Barlow Lens

Parabolic Primary Mirror

Red Dot Finder

Rack and Pinion Focuser

Wooden Alt-Azimuth Mount

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Yes, the rings are easy to see. They are about as bright as the planet itself. The planet looks a bit as a teacup with ears, seen from above.

At the moment it is low in the sky for us in the northern part of the world. Therefore you'll probably won't see any details. It will be pretty small.

Edit: you live in Athens. There the planets are standing higher in the sky. Therefore you'll have to look through less atmosphere and should be able to see more details than if you had lived further north. You also have darker skies, although that is not so important for planets.

Jupiter is bigger and standing higher. After some practice (looking more often and longer) and when having good seeing, you will be able to see details like the cloud belts, the great red spot, shadows of moons and the moons themselves. Download a phone app which shows you which moons are which. Jovian Moons it's called.

Mars is still in opposition. It is standing a bit low, so it is not very clear. But if you see details, like a black area in the middle and a polar cap, you are lucky. It will become worse the next years because it will go out of opposition. Edit: Also ignore the part about it standing low, which is not so relevant for your location.

I haven't seen Venus for a while. But last I saw it, it was a fuzzy white ball with a phase. Which means you can see it like a not-full moon at certain times. Details not to be seen on it.

You might want to look in Stellarium or some other skyapp to check when you can see the planets and in which direction. They are very bright and not to miss when you know where to look. They typically look like a bright star that doesn't twinkle. Also take a look at Jupiter with binoculars.

Have fun.

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Your mags will be x40 and x16.  With Barlow - x80 and x32.

You should do your initial search of the sky with x32 or x40, then increase to x80.

Depending on conditions, you will see Jupiter and four little dots (Galilean moons).  You should be able to make out a couple of grey bands on the planet too.  It will appear small even at x80.  Saturn (including rings) will appear about the same size.  Venus will appear as a bright spot, often crescent shaped.  Mars, an orange dot. 

Don't expect to see much more detail, but even seeing the above is quite an experience!  You might get slightly better views of Jupiter with a little more mag (again, depending on conditions).  A 6mm eyepiece for example would give x67/133.

Have fun!


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I think you might want to get another eyepiece that lets you get a bigger magnification. Jupiter is typically nice at 120-130x magnification or so. But you will be able to see it at 80x as well. For example Jupiter will be surprisingly small, but quite sharp at 80x. With more magnification it will become a bit bigger, but less sharp.

The telescope you have chosen has a 400mm focus length. This is quite short and therefore you can't expect to be able to increase a great lot without getting a less sharp image.

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