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Sky-searcher

The night I’ve been waiting for!

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This is not a detailed write up of my session last night, but got to see the two planets that have been on my astronomy bucket list since starting this hobby at the start of the year. Didn’t hold out much hope for last night as the weather & clear skies apps both predicted cloud cover by midnight. I had put my Mak127 in the garage to cool at 8pm & kept my fingers crossed! Some clouds started to roll in at 10pm, so was not hopeful. By 11pm there was a clear spot, so setup the tripod & scope & took a look at the moon. Even with a moon filter it was extremely bright, showing good crater detail on it’s shadowy edge. Jupiter had also risen & took a look for the 1st time. I was amazed, a bright disc & 4 moons visible. 1st views were with my 8mm BST star guider at 187x. Placed in my 15mm BST to give me 100x & the view was bettered due to the conditions & height of the planet. Tried several different filters (green, yellow, red, etc) & finally got the best views with a light pollution filter showing 2 bands on Jupiter. With the sky holding out I decided to wait for Saturn to rise as wouldn’t be to far behind. At 12.30 a small bright light rose above the distant tree line in the SE. Moved the scope & to my amazement my 1st every view of Saturn! I could clearly make out the planet & its discs. At 1am I am lucky the the street lights turn off in the north of the Isle of Man, turning my Bortle 4 into a 1 or 2. But the brightness of the moon lit the sky. Had to drag my self to bed at 2am. Great night trying out my new equipment ( Mak127, dielectric diagonal & Giaz mount ) which performed brilliant & seeing Saturn & Jupiter topped it off. Hopefully many more clear skies as there hasn’t been many lately! 

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Sounds like a good night and as a relative newbie know how exiting it is to get your first clear views of these planets (especially I think to see Saturn and it's rings). But with the current weather I think you deserve the reward sitting it out and cloud dodging like that.

I think due to positions of planets it will be a year or two before we get the best views of the planets so we have good things to look forward to 🙂

Steve

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Good stuff @Sky-searcher, must have been amazing to get your first views of these lovely planets. It's a shame they are not well placed at the moment, and unfortinatley it will be quite some years before they are better placed again.

Mars gets to over 40 degrees next opposition though, so they are things to look out for.

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It's brilliant isn't it? From your yard, viewing detail of planets 360 and 750 million (ish) miles away through the earth's atmosphere and the expanse of space.

Awesome!

 

 

 

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17 minutes ago, ScouseSpaceCadet said:

It's brilliant isn't it? From your yard, viewing detail of planets 360 and 750 million (ish) miles away through the earth's atmosphere and the expanse of space.

Awesome!

 

 

 

Very true! That reminds me too, that it currently takes light 35 minutes to reach us from Jupiter and 75 minutes from Saturn!

I remember at one point years ago being confused that Stellarium was showing a shadow transit starting about 40 mins before it actually did; I then found out there is a tick box to select which adjusts for the time it takes the light to reach us, then it became accurate! Amazing.

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Sounds like a great night! Few things are as memorable as the first view of Jupiter and Saturn!

Congrats!

Rob

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2 hours ago, ScouseSpaceCadet said:

It's brilliant isn't it? From your yard, viewing detail of planets 360 and 750 million (ish) miles away through the earth's atmosphere and the expanse of space.

Awesome!

 

 

 

It certainly is brilliant. You see the moon & stars by eye. You look through your scope & see multiple times more stars, clusters, nebula, galaxies, planets & moon in detail. Always changing & new things to see & learn. Andy 👍

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Posted (edited)

Congratulations! A nice report, it looks like you had a great night out there. You'll be surprised how much detail you'll be able see on Jupiter when the planet is higher in the sky and as you build up experience. What's next on your bucket list? :)

Edited by Waddensky

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A great night,and a great report. Isn`t great when everything comes tgeather may you have many more of them. Des

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Great report, the more you look over time the more you will pick out even if conditions are not ideal.

On the topic of the speed if light this was estimated hundreds of years ago by comparing the movement of the moons of Jupiter  which was very accurately predictable to what was observed as Jupiter's distance from earth varied.

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