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Olli

Did I see my first Galaxy?

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So a few days ago  I had my first light with my 130p and had a successful time with it I managed to view the Orion Nebula and also M45. The weather wasn’t great then but  I still managed to get great views of both these objects. However tonight shall we say, was my first test on using the scope properly. Around sunset there were no clouds in sight and if there where any they were heading west but only a few and it stayed very clear from sunset till it got dark.During the sunset I looked out my window and the view was quite amazing I do like my sunsets but I saw something and  I’m not 100% sure on exactly what it was. The object was extremely bright and on its own with nothing around it  ( it wasn’t the sun :) )and was facing west and I had a look  through my binoculars  and I thought it was  Venus  but I’m not a 100% sure. I’m hoping that one of you can confirm what I saw during the sunset. If it was Venus or even mercury then it was my first time seeing either of them. Or I might be  completely wrong 

As the weather forecast once again wasn’t  acurate ( using BBC ) for the night I decided to risk it and leave my scope out half an hour before I went out they said there was supposed to be rain and some patches of cloud from about 7pm onwards. However i was quite please to see that there were no clouds in sight, whew. My main goal of the night was to see my first Galaxy. I’d thought I had seen Andromeda through my binoculars before but I was not sure that I saw it. I still need to get the hang of star hoping I still find it abit difficult but I guess the more I use the scope I’ll get used to it.  Anyway I started with Orion as that’s my main starting point and thought I’d check out M42 again as the conditions were abit better then last time.  I was pleasantly surprised that I could see more detail. I could even see the  trapezium of stars within the nebula with the 10mm eyepiece as some of you suggested in my previous report that I should be able to see it. Then my next target was m45 again the view was really nice could see all the stars clearly.

Now as stated before my main goal of the night was to find my first Galaxy. After looking at M45  I knew that the Andromeda  and Triangulum Galaxy were close. I was using stellarium on my tablet ( with night vision mode) and also the sky and telescope pocket atlas which I bought from @JemC  both worked quite well together as I still struggle with  the atlas. I followed the Perseus constellation to find the Triangulum constellation which I think I managed to find. Near those constellations I saw to big yellow dots. Both of them were about arms length of each other. Looking at  them with  the naked eye they looked liked bright yellow stars with one slightly dimmer than the other. Now I’m again not sure if these were Andromeda and Triangulum Galaxy And I may be completely off and after looking at stellarium I noticed there are few galaxies around that area.First I aligned the finder scope  so the “ yellow star on the left ” was in the field of view I then put in the 25mm eyepeice And could see a grey smudge which at first I thought it was a patch of cloud but then after double checking I realised it wasn’t. I am stil not sure which Galaxy I saw but it was absolutely incredible. I must confess I did get goosebumps. After carefully trying to get it in focus I could see a bright yellow light which was glowing straight through it kind of like a spike of light. And the out side was a grey smudge. However  after spending about half an hour looking through  the 10mm eyepice I could start to see some black inner circles which I was thinking might be the dust lanes? And also I could see a part that was slightly deformed. It looked like a small circle looked different from the rest and I thought that might be m32 but may be wrong.

Finaly  I wanted to see the  Triangulum Galaxy. This was slight smaller then the one I had just looked at but looked similar. I could see a grey smudge with a bright core and a disc type shape. Like the Galaxy i described before. Again the center of the galaxy had a bright yellow light. And I could also see The same type of black inner circle  after spending about half an hour or so observing.Even if  it was smaller then the other one I was very impressed in what I saw and both of  them  gave me goosebumps. I’m certain these were galaxies I double checked by looking at the stars around it to make sure that they looked different and they did. I really hope that you can confirm in what I saw and also confirm on what I described in the beginning  if it was Venus or not.

Thanks very much for reading  sorry for the extremely long report but wanted to share what i had seen today :)

Thanks for reading and clear skies :D 

 

Edited by Dinoco
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Need to read the rest of your post in detail, but regarding the first part, most likely that you saw Venus, it is shining brightly as the sun sets at the moment. Mercury would have been there too but much more faint, worth trying to see after the sun has set though.

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6 minutes ago, Stu said:

Need to read the rest of your post in detail, but regarding the first part, most likely that you saw Venus, it is shining brightly as the sun sets at the moment. Mercury would have been there too but much more faint, worth trying to see after the sun has set though.

Thanks Stu that’s exciting. Can’t believe I haven’t seen any of the planets before been into astronomy/space for ages. Sorry for the long post thought you lot could do with a story before going to bed.

Edited by Dinoco
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I know you would expect nothing less of me but some more SkySafari snaps ;), so here goes. I genuinely can't quite tell what you saw from the report. Some of it sounds right, but other bits don't quite sound familiar. Both are subtle grey blobs, I would not say there is bright light coming from the centre of either of them. M33 I would expect to be a fairly subtle roundish disk of light, brighter towards the centre. M31 is more or an oval shape and depending upon your skies can seem huge if it is dark enough for you to detect the other parts, otherwise you just see the brighter inner core. M32 is a fuzzy stellar object, easy to mistake for a star at lower power, M110 is much more diffuse and further away.

These should show you the field of view with the 25 and 10mm so you can compare the scale of what you saw. Bear in mind they would likely appear smaller as you not see the full extent of them. How does this compare?

IMG_7755.PNG

IMG_7756.PNG

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Very enjoyable to read. It makes me itch for a clear night.

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10 minutes ago, Stu said:

I know you would expect nothing less of me but some more SkySafari snaps ;), so here goes. I genuinely can't quite tell what you saw from the report. Some of it sounds right, but other bits don't quite sound familiar. Both are subtle grey blobs, I would not say there is bright light coming from the centre of either of them. M33 I would expect to be a fairly subtle roundish disk of light, brighter towards the centre. M31 is more or an oval shape and depending upon your skies can seem huge if it is dark enough for you to detect the other parts, otherwise you just see the brighter inner core. M32 is a fuzzy stellar object, easy to mistake for a star at lower power, M110 is much more diffuse and further away.

These should show you the field of view with the 25 and 10mm so you can compare the scale of what you saw. Bear in mind they would likely appear smaller as you not see the full extent of them. How does this compare?

IMG_7755.PNG

IMG_7756.PNG

I think it may have been the pinwheel Galaxy. before  I tried to find it I had looked up what they could look like and  knew andromeda is quite big and it’s one of the brightest dso’s. Both of the objects I saw were brighter in the middle and looked slightly similar both round disk shapes as well. I’m certain it wasn’t a star or if it was then it’s probably the longest someone has looked at one before. My skies are fairly good on flos clear outside app says my bortle is 4. Maybe I’ll have another look when it’s clear next. They were both near the horizon as I said arms length of each other facing west. You should really ask sky safari for a sponsorship :) 

neither of them looked that fuzzy though which I was abit confused about.

Edited by Dinoco
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3 minutes ago, Dinoco said:

I think it may have been the pinwheel Galaxy. before  I tried to find it I had looked up what they could look like and  knew andromeda is quite big and it’s one of the brightest dso’s. Both of the objects I saw were brighter in the middle and looked slightly similar both round disk shapes as well. I’m certain it wasn’t a star or if it was then it’s probably the longest someone has looked at one before. My skies are fairly good on flos clear outside app says my bortle is 4. Maybe I’ll have another look when it’s clear next. They were both near the horizon as I said arms length of each other facing west. You should really ask sky safari for a sponsorship :) 

It does sound, from what you just said, that it's is likely you saw them then. Nice one!

Only thing to do is spot them again next clear night and that will build your confidence that you've got them. Have a good look for 32 and 110, they should show up clearly with good skies.

EDIT Yes, I think I should, have probably sold quite a few copies for them!

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50 minutes ago, Stu said:

It does sound, from what you just said, that it's is likely you saw them then. Nice one!

Only thing to do is spot them again next clear night and that will build your confidence that you've got them. Have a good look for 32 and 110, they should show up clearly with good skies.

EDIT Yes, I think I should, have probably sold quite a few copies for them!

That’s a bit of a relief.I have just looked at  sky safari my self and put in roughly the time I was observing and it does seem that you are right.Thanks for confirming it. I’ll try and have another look when it’s clear.

 

Edited by Dinoco

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