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Quick tour of the outer solar system, and Eris!


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Hi folks,

Had a quick session last night attempting to capture some of the fainter outer solar system objects, like Nereid and Eris. Unfortunately Nereid was a no-show. I guess at mag 19.5, it's a bit beyond my setup, even when binning at 2x. Eris was a great find, though, at three times the distance of Pluto.

I had some issues with stray light coming in from somewhere, and didn't take any flats, but here's a few rough-and-ready images, captured with a 200mm f/5 Newt and Atik428ex camera. 2x binned, so resolution is low and please excuse the messy gradients.

Here's my first ever capture of Eris at about mag 18.9. Just a few pixels, but definitely there and confirmed by Astrometrica. I've already managed to capture Makemake, Haumea and Pluto itself. Sedna is nearly mag 21 and conveniently placed in Taurus. Perhaps that's a possibility one day. Interestingy, Eris's albedo is a phenomenal 96%, compared to Venus's 80%. A genuine snowball.


Zoomed in:


Here's Uranus. Just three moons on view. Astrometrica showed a dozen or so asteroids in the field of view, but all were around 20-21st magnitude, so not visible to me this time.


And finally Neptune. Triton is always easy, but Nereid eluded me this time. Next time, perhaps.




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