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Mars and Saturn - 1st April 2010


dweller25
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Well after two weeks of poor weather I finally managed to get out to observe (albeit between clouds !!).

Mars first and what a surprise - it's still observable and showing a little detail. It had a pronounced phase and the North Polar Cap is very small and dull. Very subtle surface markings in the middle of the globe, a nice big cloud to the upper left and very subtle shadings at the South.

8" F/6 Newtonian at x192 (Ultima Barlow + 12.5mm Orthoscopic)

1st Apr 2010 - 19:25UT

Seeing = AII, CM = 133'

Had a look at Praesepe at low power in the refractor and what a stunning sight. Pin sharp stars against a really black background, absolutely magnificent.

Then moved onto Saturn and wow is it big compared to Mars. Beautifully sharp ring system with nice banding in both hemispheres of the globe. Ring tilt is very small and I could not see the Cassini division. Three moons in close attendance.

Takahashi FS-128 with Baader Binoviewer at x235.

1st April 2010 - 22:00UT

Seeing = AII.

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Nice one Dweller. Feels good to get out again I bet!

Really liking the subtle detail you've picked out on both Mars and Saturn in your sketches.

I've got a break in the shower clouds at the mo and will have my 8.5" on Mars tonight. Be good to compare what I see to what you managed to get last night.

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Managed to get about three quarters of an hour's decent viewing of Mars last night. Detail is so very subtle in the central area of the disc at the mo. Picked up on the darker area near the centre as you did, and also on that bright area situated on the SE limb, which I guess is around about Tharsis.

I'll put my sketch up soon

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