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Ralphf

In The Neighborhood of Sirius

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Time: 03:40 + JST, Thursday 11/21/19

 

Location: south Osaka Prefecture Japan

 

Had a touch of insomnia and figured since I had to take the trash out in a few hours, I’d get it done earlier.  While outside I noticed clear skies to the south and west which is the direction my suburban balcony faces. 

 

Got my 15x70 Celestrons and scanned around a bit. I decided to focus on the areas around Sirius which was blazing away as usual. 

 

I don’t always have the best of luck with deep sky objects but M47 was especially prominent. Adjacent M46 was less so, but noticeable. Also came across M41 further below and M50 above Sirius. 

 

I moved down to the Wezen - Adhara region on the back leg of Canis Major. Between those two stars was Sigma Canis Major. Here I noticed a small strand of stars I don’t usually see. The closet one to Sigma CMa was V381 CMa, magnitude 7.76 and a quartet of dots running southeast to northwest. These were HD 52463, HD52617,  HD52731 and HD52897. Their magnitudes range from 7.78 to 8.32. 

 

I was wondering if it would be worth waiting for slightly pre-sunrise Mercury to rise in the east but a wall of clouds was forming in that direction. Returned to bed and, thank heavens, I was able to drift off to sleep. 

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It's a lovely area of the sky and perhaps overlooked, with Orion/Taurus getting the lion's share of attention from our latitudes.

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Nice report Ralph. It's not an area of sky I know particularly well because it is always pretty low in the murk or behind houses from my home.

I checked out your string of stars on Skysafari, looks nice!

Screenshot_20191124-190443_SkySafari 6 Pro.jpg

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Goodricke1, Stu,

Thanks for the comments. I seem to be a bit further south than most of info I find in English on the net. For example, each time Mercury becomes visible, the literature says it will be a tough find considering the Sun’s glare but the planet is pretty far above the horizon for a few days at my location. Perhaps it’s the same situation with the stars below Sirius?

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59 minutes ago, Ralphf said:

Goodricke1, Stu,

Thanks for the comments. I seem to be a bit further south than most of info I find in English on the net. For example, each time Mercury becomes visible, the literature says it will be a tough find considering the Sun’s glare but the planet is pretty far above the horizon for a few days at my location. Perhaps it’s the same situation with the stars below Sirius?

You certainly have a significant advantage over us in the UK in terms of southerly objects Ralph. These snaps show the comparison of Sirius altitude at transit between Osaka and my location in the UK near London.

Screenshot_20191125-100658_SkySafari 6 Pro.jpg

Screenshot_20191125-100730_SkySafari 6 Pro.jpg

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That explains a lot, Stu. Excellent visual comparison. Thanks again for the info. 

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