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Vesta - my first minor planet sketch ever !!


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With the help of Stellarium I took some time to track down Vesta in the moonlit sky in the early hours of 30 Jan. Managed to identify it and sketch it in a widefield eyepiece.

16" Mag x70


I tried to position the eyepiece for the sketch so the starfield would be the same for when I came back to it tonight (hopefully a bit later on). Unfortunately I think on reflection though that Vesta is moving away from that starfield rather than through it. Will have to get it right next time as I would like to be able to plot its movement against the same background stars :)

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Great catch of Vesta.

Vesta moves quite quickly across the sky, in a couple of hours you would have noticed the position change easily.

It's always exciting to get an object that's new.

Thanks for the info Paul. I really didn't appreciate how quickly it would move. I'll know for next time :)

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Great sketch, I'm going tohave to google Vesta, as I can't say that I've heard of it before. How far out is its orbit?

Do you sketch directly onto black card at your scope? Or trasnfer a quick sketch later on?

Hi YM...

Vesta is in the asteroid belt in that gap between Mars and Jupiter. I think it is the second or third largest asteroid in the belt.

I actually sketch black on white paper. I then scan or photograph it, put it into my photo software program and just invert the image to negative, so it goes white on black. I like it that way as it gives a better impression of what you see at the eyepiece, rather than if it is just black on white

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Excellent work again DS.

I've always thought of tracking down one of the asteroids, just to see if i could spot the movement over the course of a day, never realised you could detect the movement in a couple of hours. I'll give it a try on the 17th if it's clear.


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