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CentaurZ

Mercury as Winter Evening Star

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38 minutes ago, Marvin Jenkins said:

Excellent work. I went out again and could see it but some horse tails low on the horizon meant it was far less visual than yesterday. Was that your first view of the inner most planet?

No I've seen it often, but always a thrill to catch a glimpse. Hope you enjoy those summer messier's.

andrew

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1 minute ago, andrew63 said:

No I've seen it often, but always a thrill to catch a glimpse. Hope you enjoy those summer messier's.

andrew

Thank you I am really looking forward to it. I note with interest on your foot note that you are at M106, what 4 are you looking for to go whole nine yards?

M

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9 minutes ago, Paul M said:

After my previous post I refreshed my memory on visual observation of Pluto.

It's slowly getting worse as Pluto's highly eccentric orbit takes it further away it'll only get fainter. It was doable with an 8" scope at it's Perihelion  but even under good conditions and some practice, a 10" is just about the minimum now. Good luck picking out an unimpressive 14th magnitude star in Sagittarius too!

Here's Its movement over the next 10 years with magnitude in brackets!!

EDIT: I think the magnitudes are modified allowing for atmospheric extinction.

image.thumb.png.6e4a0b5e78ae55e924a74372dc19510c.png

According to SkySafari it’s mag 14.3 at opposition in July this summer. This just became one of my observing goals for the year :) It’s pretty low so it’ll be tough in the 10” dob. 

5BF2B0B7-27C4-460B-93C9-BB4B985E5758.thumb.png.fabf93d01254200b01794a196758e3cd.png

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One of them I remember is M69 in Sagittarius. 

andrew

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I see that after storm Ciara clears at the weekend, the UK will be bathed in polar maritime air. So probably lots of showers but very clear between them so hope to get some good conditions for Mercury at around max elongation. I'm only a mile or so from a seaward westerly horizon so hope to take the Mak on safari and catch Mercury in the wild.

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13 minutes ago, andrew63 said:

One of them I remember is M69 in Sagittarius. 

andrew

Yeh I need that one too. Happy hunting.

M

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So pleased, just bagged Mercury from the patio doors and then Venus with naked eye and the 10x50's.
Members of my club were on a look out now, but I could not get to the site on time.
Hurray for my patio doors and step.

 

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Nice one Alan. Just seen it a few times myself whilst a passenger in a car heading west on the M25. Tough to find initially but quite clear once found. Doubt I will be home in time for the bins.

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Saw Mercury whilst sat in stationary in traffic queues on the M27 tonight. Like @Stu, I  found it a bit tricky to find initially but clear enough once I'd located it.

I'm not normally grateful for traffic queues on the M27 but I was tonight.

Edited by AdeKing
correcting autocorrect
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Just about got a pic. The sky is so clear I can see the mountains. Just in case anyone needs an explanation Venus is top left. Mercury is very low down on the horizon a little right.

Marv

DSC_0049 (2).jpg

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Cycling home from work this evening, admiring Venus over the Thames sunset vista, I suddenly remembered Mercury should be around too (1752). And so it was, quite distinct to the naked eye, and even visible in this iPhone picture, just above and to the right of the twin cranes.

My annual February fix of Mercury-with-naked-eye <tick> .

 

IMG_6428.jpg

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Great shots Marv and Magnus!!

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8 minutes ago, Captain Magenta said:

Cycling home from work this evening, admiring Venus over the Thames sunset vista, I suddenly remembered Mercury should be around too (1752). And so it was, quite distinct to the naked eye, and even visible in this iPhone picture, just above and to the right of the twin cranes.

My annual February fix of Mercury-with-naked-eye <tick> .

 

IMG_6428.jpg

I know we all hate pollution, but what a great picture. The reflection of the eye on the turbulent water is great.

M

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I believe I managed to find Mercury earlier this evening. To the naked eye it was a clear red dot. When I lined it up in the scope, which was basically horizontal! It appeared as a very colourful object. It was literally red, yellow and blue?! Is this normal for Mercury??

Regards

 

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1 hour ago, Barry-W-Fenner said:

I believe I managed to find Mercury earlier this evening. To the naked eye it was a clear red dot. When I lined it up in the scope, which was basically horizontal! It appeared as a very colourful object. It was literally red, yellow and blue?! Is this normal for Mercury??

Regards

 

What you describe (multicoloured twinkling) is often ascribed to Sirius. Mercury at the moment is mag -1.0, very nearly the same mag as Sirius and very low down too. So yes it could well be in my inexperienced opinion.

M

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9 hours ago, Barry-W-Fenner said:

I believe I managed to find Mercury earlier this evening. To the naked eye it was a clear red dot. When I lined it up in the scope, which was basically horizontal! It appeared as a very colourful object. It was literally red, yellow and blue?! Is this normal for Mercury??

Regards

 

I saw the same effect looking at Mercury yesterday evening. Have a read of the thread below which describes the causes of that effect on Sirius. Sounds like you saw it though :) 

 

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13 minutes ago, Littleguy80 said:

I saw the same effect looking at Mercury yesterday evening. Have a read of the thread below which describes the causes of that effect on Sirius. Sounds like you saw it though :) 

 

Thanks Littleguy80 I will have a read of that. For a moment I though I was going mad. Mercury seemed to be filled with red, yellow, blue and green! Almost like a prism effect. I will enjoy reading about this. I honestly though my mirrors were out of line or something and creating some kind of light reflection 😂

 

Baz

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Almost impossible to see Mercury from home here with no view to my west because of the trees, may be possible later in the year when it transits across to the northwest with the sun in winter (sun, moon and planets are in the northern sky in Oz).

Interesting thing about Sirius is that it doesn't twinkle from here, certainly no colours shown other than pure white, mainly because it gets to 68 degrees altitude and is really steady to view on most nights.

Vega from here is very low on my north horizon and it does twinkle with colours.

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11 hours ago, Geoff Barnes said:

Almost impossible to see Mercury from home here with no view to my west because of the trees, may be possible later in the year when it transits across to the northwest with the sun in winter (sun, moon and planets are in the northern sky in Oz).

Interesting thing about Sirius is that it doesn't twinkle from here, certainly no colours shown other than pure white, mainly because it gets to 68 degrees altitude and is really steady to view on most nights.

Vega from here is very low on my north horizon and it does twinkle with colours.

Got to start doing a little bit of Southern Hemisphere homework. My brother lives in Richmond Melbourne, and it can only be a year or two before I visit. By then I will have a travel scope setup, any tips other than get out of the city.

Marvin

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11 hours ago, Marvin Jenkins said:

any tips other than get out of the city

Here you go Marvin, the light pollution map of Melbourne, you can see Richmond just east of the city in Bortle 8-9 and our house about 50km east in Bortle 4 area. 

Once you get east of us the skies get progressively darker but over an hours drive from Richmond to get dark skies.

Might be better to head north out past the airport on the motorway to get to good dark skies quicker.

Just do some reading up on DSO's visible in the southern hemisphere, it's a rich treasure trove! :) 

2020-02-08.thumb.png.3b517cb1fcef9b2b9504c9e7e236f4cc.png

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7 hours ago, Geoff Barnes said:

Here you go Marvin, the light pollution map of Melbourne, you can see Richmond just east of the city in Bortle 8-9 and our house about 50km east in Bortle 4 area. 

Once you get east of us the skies get progressively darker but over an hours drive from Richmond to get dark skies.

Might be better to head north out past the airport on the motorway to get to good dark skies quicker.

Just do some reading up on DSO's visible in the southern hemisphere, it's a rich treasure trove! :) 

2020-02-08.thumb.png.3b517cb1fcef9b2b9504c9e7e236f4cc.png

Thank you very much Geoff. Probably just be binoculars and wide field photography as I don’t have a travel set up.

Are there any clubs or groups that get out to darker areas around Melbourne that you know of. Perhaps I could blag a peek through a scope when I am there.

Cheers, Marvin.

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Reverting to  OT...

I spent some time this afternoon/evening playing with my Intes 6” Mak and its new addition, the Revelation Crayford on the back.

I managed to get Mercury through it, finding it at 42x then moving up to 250x, definitely a half disc but I was having to look through a tree at the bottom of my garden so its quality came and went, mostly went.

Still, the first time I’ve ever managed to get a scope on that planet so very well pleased!

M

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5 minutes ago, Captain Magenta said:

Reverting to  OT...

I spent some time this afternoon/evening playing with my Intes 6” Mak and its new addition, the Revelation Crayford on the back.

I managed to get Mercury through it, finding it at 42x then moving up to 250x, definitely a half disc but I was having to look through a tree at the bottom of my garden so its quality came and went, mostly went.

Still, the first time I’ve ever managed to get a scope on that planet so very well pleased!

M

Excellent work. I may have seen it finally, but a very big well done for viewing a phase, especially being challenged by a tree. You have every reason to be pleased with your accomplishment.

Marv

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10 hours ago, Captain Magenta said:

Reverting to  OT...

I spent some time this afternoon/evening playing with my Intes 6” Mak and its new addition, the Revelation Crayford on the back.

I managed to get Mercury through it, finding it at 42x then moving up to 250x, definitely a half disc but I was having to look through a tree at the bottom of my garden so its quality came and went, mostly went.

Still, the first time I’ve ever managed to get a scope on that planet so very well pleased!

M

Did you use any filters to see the half disc? My old brief look at Mercury so far was a bright multicoloured "star"  kind of like what Venus looks like but lot more colour.  As with Venus I assume it requires a filter to resolve?

Thank you

Baz

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