Jump to content

Stargazers Lounge Uses Cookies

Like most websites, SGL uses cookies in order to deliver a secure, personalised service, to provide social media functions and to analyse our traffic. Continued use of SGL indicates your acceptance of our cookie policy.

sgl_imaging_challenge_banner_android_vs_ios_winners.thumb.jpg.803608cf7eedd5cfb31eedc3e3f357e9.jpg

Sign in to follow this  
michael.h.f.wilkinson

November 16, 2018: busy night imaging with some observing

Recommended Posts

Last Friday the skies were very clear indeed, so I set up the Celestron C8 on the Vixen Great Polaris mount, first to image the moon, and potentially Mars, which were just peeping over the trees behind my house. It was still fairly early, and the flood lights of the football pitches behind those two rows of trees were not adding much to my fun, but for the  moon and Mars it should not be a problem. I first looked at the moon through my 25 mm TV Plössl EP which I use to centre objects on the camera chip with my flip mirror. Seeing was not good, but you could still see nice detail along the terminator, as can be seen in my capture here. After that, I switched to Mars, which swam around in the FOV so badly, I decided to skip imaging, and go for visual. I put the star diagonal in the scope in place of the flip mirror, and inserted my Pentax XW 10mm EP. Focusing was tricky, but as I patiently waited for fleeting moments of stable air, I could make out some surface detail from time to time, in particular hints of the polar ice cap. The gibbous phase was also evident.

I then went comet hunting in Andromeda, already high up in the sky, but still with very much light pollution, both natural and artificial. I could just make out M31 with the naked eye. I inserted the Nagler 31 mm T5 in the diagonal, and with the aid of my 14x70 RACI finder could zoom in on the correct position for 64P/Swift-Gehrels. I tried to spot NGC 404, the Ghost of Mirach, as my star hop started out at Mirach, but the glare of the star, combined with moonlight and LP made that impossible. Once I got the right location for the comet, with Mirach out of the FOV, I could make out a ghostly glow where the comet should be. I moved the scope in RA and Dec to see whether the glow moved with the stars, which it did, ruling out the possibility of some internal reflection being the cause of the glow. I repeated the star hop from Mirach three times, and each time the glow was visible, so I will count that as my 21st comet observed. 

I had actually spotted the glow of that comet in a capture near M31, as I was framing the shot for that galaxy last week, but somehow don't count that as "having seen" the comet.

After this, I set up the DSO imaging rig on the mount, did polar alignment, waited until the flood lights at the football pitch were turned off around 22:00, and started imaging M31, as documented here. It was rather late when I packed everything in, but well worth it.

  • Like 7

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It seems that you had fun. A 14x70 RACI? How wide is the FOV? Sounds interesting.

It seems to be a good season for comets, with also 38P and 46P coming soon.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, DHEB said:

It seems that you had fun. A 14x70 RACI? How wide is the FOV? Sounds interesting.

It seems to be a good season for comets, with also 38P and 46P coming soon.

I built that finder out of a little 70 mm F/5 refractor. The FOV is just shy of 4.5°

I have bagged 38P/Stephan-Oterma before. For 46P/Wirtanen I will wait until the end of the month before it will be in a good position. C/2018 V1 (Machholz-Fujikawa-Iwamoto) is interesting too.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.