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MKHACHFE

Best time of year to catch a glimpse of the galactic center in Sagittarius from the UK?

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Hi all,

 

So, still buzzing from my first dark sky weekend, I'm already planning the next few, researching places, distances etc..

I have a quick question for all you seasoned members. What would be the best time of year to view the brightest part of the milky way from Wales or Cornwall? I guess that would be Sagittarius and it looks like June is about as high above the horizon it will get.

Would you guys agree with that? Or am I maybe  too focused on seeing Sagittarius? It looks like it will never get very high from the UK. Is it still worth pursuing and waiting for or should I forget about ever seeing it in all it's glory till I venture south? I've only really seen the MW towards Perseus and Cass and whilst it was glorious, I'm expecting Cygnus, Aquila and Sagittarius to be far better...

Cheers

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I think late July or August is better. Don't forget you don't get full astro darkness in June, and objects like M6 and M7 are higher that bit later. Of course it depends what time you are observing, but I've had my best views when on holiday in Devon or Dorset during these periods. Example snap from Skysafari attached.

Screenshot_20200121-074849_SkySafari 6 Pro.jpg

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According to Wiki, Sagittarius A* has a declination of -29 degrees, so a max altitude of about 10 degrees, even from the south coast. Somewhere dark with a sea horizon. How about the West Bexington car park? it's right on the beach, though there's a restaurant there which may be a problem. Light Pollution map says 21.72 Which is nearly as dark as it gets on the south coast. Other than that maybe the Isles of Scilly?

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3 hours ago, DaveS said:

According to Wiki, Sagittarius A* has a declination of -29 degrees, so a max altitude of about 10 degrees, even from the south coast. Somewhere dark with a sea horizon. How about the West Bexington car park? it's right on the beach, though there's a restaurant there which may be a problem. Light Pollution map says 21.72 Which is nearly as dark as it gets on the south coast. Other than that maybe the Isles of Scilly?

I was considering going to north of Bude/Tintagel...B2 in some areas according to the map. I found a few places with a sea view, far from the any roads or towns to say for the night. Tanks for your suggestion and info.

 

Cheers

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9 hours ago, Stu said:

I think late July or August is better. Don't forget you don't get full astro darkness in June, and objects like M6 and M7 are higher that bit later. Of course it depends what time you are observing, but I've had my best views when on holiday in Devon or Dorset during these periods. Example snap from Skysafari attached.

Screenshot_20200121-074849_SkySafari 6 Pro.jpg

So sad that that is all we get here and those Southern folk get that high up in the sky. Thanks for the screen grab. 

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Firstly you need to observe after the end of Astronomical Twilight, you can find that by googling astronomical darkness, which will give you the latest date before the summer solstice and earliest date after it when you have Astronomical Darkness.

To achieve the optimal view from the UK you would really need a sea horizon where you are facing south, which rules out north Cornwall and north Devon, that way you eliminate any light pollution.

The Scilly Isles would be a great location.

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I had some great views from the Pembrokeshire coast last summer.

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