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What did you see tonight?


Ags
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23 hours ago, josefk said:

Also out for the parade of planets this morning.

A chance drink of water and a glance out of the window to see mainly clear skies about 03:15 ish triggered me to action and a short walk up to my local park with the binoculars.

The skies were clear except an arms length fistful of cloud low on the eastern horizon. Observed Jupiter and three moons (i think IO was a bit too snug into the planet to spot at just 15x in my bins). Mars was barely naked eye visible to the NE of Jupiter while Saturn was naked eye visible but only after finding it in the binoculars then know exactly where to look. A few minutes later and a slight walk further up into my local park to a higher vantage point and Venus was visible. I thought i would miss out on Mercury due to the cloud bank and growing brightness but finally i also had Mercury in the bino's. Mercury wasn't naked eye visible in the growing light even knowing where to look. A strange and lovely experience to spot all five in a sky with nothing else in it except the moon and Carrion Crows. 🙂

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Great report and I like the sketch! These days I can only vicariously enjoy this planet spectacle, I haven't seen a clear sky in 3 weeks!

Malcolm 

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Hello all. Finally decided to give the planetary line up a go last night.  Been meaning to try for a while now - my bed was always winning out.  First real session at my new house / garden - has a very nice southerly aspect. Sure will be getting me out more and more again compared with the last garden. 

Watched Macca at Glastonbury and stayed away from my bed. Out about 2 am which in hindsight was a bit early. Scattered clouds and rather windy but seemed a good sky. .  Used my Stellarvue 102 with my Maxbright 2's on driven GP mount.  Saturn was looking good as was carrying a bit of height. 2/3 moons visible. Loved the ring aspect ATM. Took my time with about 30 mins of observing.  Jupiter next. Big and bright. Seems like ages since I took in his view. However was rather disappointing. Really struggling with focus. Have to put down to the wind and low altitude. Persevered for about 20 mins. Bands flitting in and out. Moons nicely spread. 

Looked to try and stay out till Mars and the Moon showed up but I baled shortly after. Note to self. It might be June but  a warm fleece and cold shorts not up to the job at 3 am with the darned wind whipping about.   Happy enough that I made the attempt.  Roll on this years oppositions. 

 

John 

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Finally managed to see M7 after several attempts in the past month. 🙂 Last night I was staying late watching Glastonbury and Macca on the telly (good show by the way!) and around midnight noticed that the sky is transparent all the way to the horizon. So decided to give it another  try with my 20x80 bins. A quick check with M4 cofirmed that the trasparency lower down was decent and I headed out into the meadow across the road to see the south horizon. Distrubed a couple of horses and got my shoes muddy but it was worth it.

I first found Epsilon Scorpii, an orange star directly south and which I knew is at the same altitude as M6 at this time. Panning east I quickly spotted M6 between two mag 5 stars. It looks like a dim lop sided miniature version of Pleiades with 6-7 stars visible in direct vision. (remember this is at just 5 degrees altitude). Encouraged by the success I moved further down and east, to about halfway to the line of the horison and spotted a cloud of dim stars, bliniking in and out with averted vision. The object was very large - at least a degree across and I could spot maybe a 15-20 stars appearing off and on as I relaxed my eyes. M7 the Ptolemy cluster, hello there! Apparently this cluster is very bright from southern skies, for me it was a struggle to even spot it initially. I'm very happy to be able to see the southernmost of the Messiers!

Back home everybody was watching Macca and Bruce Springsteen on the telly, well I saw  some real stars too 🙂

 

Edited by Nik271
typos corrected
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I was out at 245 to try see all the 5 planets (and do some imaging in between). The wind did not help with my Dob shaking vigorously but managed to find a sheltered place in my patio. Saturn showed really nicely with the Cassini division in/out between vibrations. Jupiter with its moons showed some nice bands ( the GRS seems to be in the wrong side in these morning sessions 😅). Mars was next and I could see some light and dark shading and possibly the polar ice cap? Finally, Venus....nothing spectacular apart from seeing the phase but the way Venus was hanging below the Waning crescent moon was an amazing sighting. No luck with Mercury since my low NNE view is obscured by trees. I thought I could also bag Neptune and Uranus but with light coming up even at 245 it was hard to star hope and the wind was not helping. I think I need to give my body a few days off from being up at 245 every other day 🤣.

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I know this post is two and half weeks late and I apologise, but its the first time I've seen the Lunar X & V so felt the picture was worth posting as they both stood out so well.

Rough iPhone pic taken through a combination of my Tak FC-100DL, Pentax XF 8.5, TV 2.5X power mate and WO BV's so magnification was pretty high.

For those that own the Atlas of the Moon I decided to compare maps to my pic, I found the Lunar X fairly easily (circled yellow) but the V was more tricky so not 100% sure (circled red), maybe top right corner of page 17?

 

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Edited by jock1958
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4 minutes ago, jock1958 said:

I know this post is two and half weeks late and I apologise, but its the first time I've seen the Lunar X & V so felt the picture was worth posting as they both stood out so well.

Rough iPhone pic taken through a combination of my Tak FC-100DL, Pentax XF 8.5, TV 2.5X power mate and WO BV's so magnification was pretty high.

For those that own the Atlas of the Moon I found the Lunar X fairly easily (circled yellow) but the V was more tricky so not 100% sure (circled red), maybe top right corner of page 17?

 

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Excellent shot and report - well worth a later post for us all to appreciate. Well done! (Nice rig too 😀). 

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4 hours ago, MalcolmM said:

Great report and I like the sketch! These days I can only vicariously enjoy this planet spectacle, I haven't seen a clear sky in 3 weeks!

Malcolm 

TBH I thought I was going to miss out with cloudy sky over this period but a bit of luck (waking up at the right moment) and jumping outside to take advantage was well worth it and I’m glad I did. A pity I was a bit late out as I couldn’t see them in a line like that with the naked eyed as the sky was lightening. Lovely nonetheless. Cheers

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Tracked and confirmed Pluto over the last two nights through the 12.5" dob, the 10" no longer a viable option from my backyard.

Then, set up a 90mm refractor on a Meade LX-70 with RA drive to observe: Saturn, Neptune, Jupiter, Mars, Uranus, Venus, the Moon & Mercury.

First time all were seen, by me, on the same night (morning).

 

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Last item to put away.

 

 

.

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39 minutes ago, Whistlin Bob said:

Now that is a beautiful machine!

Indeed it is.

Astro Sky structure made by James Grigar, Lake Charles, Louisiana & excellent 12.5 f/5 primary by John Stevens, Portland, Oregon. Both date from early 2006.

 

.

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Out with the 10" Dob last night . Split the Double Double even though the skies were laced with cloud , settled on the brighter stuff as i was keen to try out my two nirvanas 7mm & 16mm ... both were great but i think the 7mm will shine with planets and lunar .  Switched back to the 25mm plossl to see stars appearing as the sky darkened , The Cygnus region is not quite over the house roof yet , another couple of weeks will fix that , but i am looking forward to all sorts of deep sky stuff there . Last nights main star was a rather low Antares , but very crisp in the EP due to some , rather fine collimation . Summer Beehive and a few open clusters that i was too lazy even to look up ! I don't get much observing time at this time of year , maybe a quick 45mins to an hour , but , it keeps the eye in and satifies a quick fix , and whilst i love the summer , i cant wait until darkness falls at a reasonable time in the evening . 

Edited by Stu1smartcookie
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From this morning: 2% illuminated waning crescent Moon and Mercury.

 

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Had quite a weekend, observing-wise.

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Saturn, Jupiter, Mars and Venus this morning, with a Skymax 127 and a BST Starguider 8mm EP. The seeing was very good but there was a lot of haze. Jupiter had a halo of haze around it and I could not see details except the two main belts. The polar cap on Mars was visible and Saturn was showing subtle shading. I was up at 4am but it was worth it!

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1% illuminated waxing crescent Moon.

Binoculars showed it, but, at no time could I see it in my camera's viewfinder, I simply guessed.

Photo heavily cropped.

Moon may not appear on some monitors.

Aged: 25 1/2 hours.

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.

Edited by Nakedgun
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2 hours ago, Nakedgun said:

1% illuminated waxing crescent Moon.

Binoculars showed it, but, at no time could I see it in my camera's viewfinder, I simply guessed.

Photo heavily cropped.

Moon may not appear on some monitors.

Aged: 25 1/2 hours.

1056690914_IMGP1052-Copy(2).JPG.92de1327e1e548c6d0b9c1aac9030bf4.JPG

 

 

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Nice shot. Found on my Sammy 24-inch curved monitor turning eye-saver mode off brought it up. The cheaper Acer TFT showed it right away

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I’m on holiday in Rhodes (again) and brought a small pair of binoculars, just in case.

Just sitting in the balcony having a few cheeky Ouzos and spotted Jupiter (and moons) appearing above the apartments… first time I’ve see her this year 😃

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Posted (edited)

Garnet Star, Delta Cephei, 61 Cygni, Beta Lyrae, Epsilon Lyrae, M57, Albireo, M27, M29, M103,  C10, Achird, Polaris, Double Cluster.

C6 and ES20/68°. Decided the ES20 beats the Speers WALER 13.4. Also, preferred the view without the 6.3 reducer tonight, at least in combination with the Celestron prism.

Couldn't figure out why I had to keep tweaking the focus... realized in time that the diagonal was working its way out of the visual back!!!

Garnet star is not that red, more Amber than Garnet, but very striking regardless.

Edited by Ags
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Another camping trip but no travel ‘scope this time - too cloudy anyway here in the Peak District but always good to get a naked eye glimpse of something however basic - The Plough through a momentary break in the clouds! Simple stuff!

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Posted (edited)

Unexpected clear skies tonight at approx. 2330 encouraged me to get out with the Opticron 15x70s.

Not one to shy away from near futile tasks I had a try for C/2017 K2 PANSTARRS. Of course I couldn't see it despite having the position dead on. M92 and M13 were not even visible in the urban twilight. 🙄 

Anyway, the weather was nice so I managed a good hour out casually touring the favourably placed Lyra, Cygnus and Vulpecula. The highlight being the Coathanger. 

 

Edited by ScouseSpaceCadet
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Two new targets tonight with the 8” dob amongst some old favourites. 

M56 - extremely faint globular cluster in Lyra; struggling to compete with the twilit bright sky. One to return to under astronomical dark. 

NGC 6572 - beautiful turquoise-green planetary nebula in Ophiuchus. Appears starlight at low mag but unmistakable due to the colouration. The seeing would only support 120x, but appears more nebula like under higher mags. Fantastic little target.

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So, I find myself in the Algarve on a holiday and it wasn't till I was on the plane did I think "I should probably have bought some binoculars". So my first ever observation report on the stars is by eye and is largely me trying to work out what I'm looking at.

There is some pretty wild light pollution, but I managed to identify Antares, Dschubba and Acrab.  Alniyat was faintly visible which helped with the identification.

Looking straight up I saw a faint, flat triangle of stars.  I thought it looked a bit like the plough handle and with a bit more of a look I managed to see the plough itself.  Nice to see a friendly face

Looking to the North from my balcony I could see a fairly pronounced triangle of stars.  Stellarium tells me this is Casseopia.  Funny I was always told it looked like a W?  I decided to attempt averted vision at this point, and would you believe it?  It worked.  Looking directly I could identify gamma cas, Sheddar and caph, with the other two requiring averted vision.

This was basically done from the centre of a hotel complex whilst walking my kids back from a magic show.

What an absolute blast!  This was my first attempt at actual observation.  It's really fun just figuring out the constellations.  My birthday is in 3 days and I'm seriously considering getting some binos primed here since there is so much I can't see from my usual 58°N.  Then again even doing it by eye is great fun.

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