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Ok I'm pumped here!

Just got in from a great session under great skies. The SQM-L went a solid 21.9 tonight- what a difference no snow makes! I lose about 1/2 magnitude on the SQM from reflected starlight in the winter, which is a pile.

Inspired by @Nyctimene I tried some more Leo galaxies- confirming NGC 3607 and NGC 3608 again and plucking off 2 more in the area- NGC 3626 and NGC 3686, the latter pretty faint. The surface brightness sure makes a big difference in viewability.

Over near M81/M82 NGC 3077 was such an easy target tonight and a fantastic, in the same field view of M108 and the Owl M97 were had- the Owl was easy no filter in this little scope! M82 showed some nice mottling at 81x.

Another no challenge view of NGC 2403 was had along with so many over in Virgo. M101 so distinct, M51 at 81x superb for this aperture.

What a difference truly dark, transparent skies make. I finished off laying in the lawnchair gazing up in amazement.

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Fabulous session Gerry. Wow, 21.9, that’s about as good as it gets anywhere!

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Posted (edited)

Good to hear that the snow is receding Gerry. Just as with Stephan's @Nyctimene session, that humble H130 comes across as a powerful tool under the right circumstances. Nice way to finish, relaxed gazing on the lawn chair. 

Edited by scarp15
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Thanks to Gerry's (jetstream) suggestion above, I observed the 3607 group last evening with the Heritage 130 P under 5.2 mag skies. 3607 rather bright, round, with a brighter core region. 3608 N close by, elongated. The 12 mag 3605 could not be made out; but I spotted the equally faint, but larger, 3599 several seconds at the limit of AV.The rather bright 3632 followed (it's not listed in the IsDSA). Relaxed finally with the Leo triplet.

Stephan

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Those are excellent conditions! The mighty H130 is punching well above its weight under those conditions. A good incentive for those living under LP to take portable scopes out to darker skies when lockdown lifts and astro darkness is around. 

I've been stuck under 20.2 SQM LP, so have started taking loads of short subs using the Stargate and a Nikon DSLR, good results and can go quite deep on galaxies. 

PS tried the 9mm APM vs the 10mm BCO on M57 the other morning, the BCO was excellent, much sharper and much more light transmission, even got a hint of colour.

I'll lose astro darkness next week, but will see what I can squeeze out this summer.

Another nice one there Gerry! The air has been very clean since everything happened.

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15 minutes ago, Ships and Stars said:

Those are excellent conditions! The mighty H130 is punching well above its weight under those conditions. A good incentive for those living under LP to take portable scopes out to darker skies when lockdown lifts and astro darkness is around. 

I've been stuck under 20.2 SQM LP, so have started taking loads of short subs using the Stargate and a Nikon DSLR, good results and can go quite deep on galaxies. 

PS tried the 9mm APM vs the 10mm BCO on M57 the other morning, the BCO was excellent, much sharper and much more light transmission, even got a hint of colour.

I'll lose astro darkness next week, but will see what I can squeeze out this summer.

Another nice one there Gerry! The air has been very clean since everything happened.

Just in from splitting wood, ready for next winter now. It was -6c this morning and the sky is crystal clear atm, I hope it holds- I'll drag out the 24" if so. Kudos for trying the 10 BCO out, they are very good eventhough a purist might scoff at the FOV...its not an Abbe in the strict sense. Yes colour! more to come for you on M57... try it on the Eskimo with your 20", 2 toned green with fine radial filaments and a broken bright annular ring appears.

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3 minutes ago, jetstream said:

Just in from splitting wood, ready for next winter now. It was -6c this morning and the sky is crystal clear atm, I hope it holds- I'll drag out the 24" if so. Kudos for trying the 10 BCO out, they are very good eventhough a purist might scoff at the FOV...its not an Abbe in the strict sense. Yes colour! more to come for you on M57... try it on the Eskimo with your 20", 2 toned green with fine radial filaments and a broken bright annular ring appears.

Wow, still pretty cold. We've been having soem very clear weather lately, I was getting a bit fed up after February and March, if it was clear it was very windy. Past week has been like living in a different location. 

I will try the Eskimo out tonight with the BCO, that' a very cool target. 

Hope your skies stay clear, if it's anything like the other night, the 24" should put on quite a show for you 👍

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Bit windy and with some high altitude cloud... but the sun makes a big change, maybe the lack of planes!

Peter

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