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please tell me seeing is bad at the moment


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I hear you all crying out 'the seeing is bad at the moment'. But seriously:

I seem to have difficulty picking up much detail on jupiter. DSOs appear fine - andromeda looks lovely as does the ring nebula.

Is it the seeing? This is my first autumn and while out at my dark sky, I could feel my feet were getting wet from the dew.

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Hi, i`m no expert but i was out observing jupiter last night and there were times when the seeing was awful, but there were moments when it improved greatly and i was able to see the grs and also a white oval. It is a matter of being patient sometimes as many other will tell you i am sure. Observe planets for a while and usually there will be times when the seeing improves and the detail will jump out at you. Another thing to consider is the time that you do your observing. If you observe early in the evening when jupiter is lower down then the seeing will be poorer but if you wait and observe later in the evening when jupiter is higher then you should be able to get a better view.

With regard to deep sky objects, they do in my opinion tend to look the same if the seeing is good or not so good.

Hope this helps

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I seem to have difficulty picking up much detail on jupiter.... Is it the seeing?

Quite likely BUT you should probably check the collimation of your scope and allow it to cool to ambient ... which might take 2 - 3 hours, or maybe won't happen at all if the temperature is varying rapidly.

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I thought seeing was really bad last night (at least from my mid-Norfolk location).

I did 2-3 hours imaging DSOs, and thought I would have a go at Jupiter at about midnight when I anticipated seeing to be good. Unfortunately it was terrible, and gave up after attempting one avi.

Edited by lukebl
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Seeing wasn't the best last night. But we had a semi decent view in the good moments. For me the seeing has been poor for the last month. I've not had a really good view of Jupiter since early September.

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Jupiter was stunning during the still moments - with a clearly defined GRS and even glimpses of the SEB, the NEB showing a lot of detail.

This was after 90 minutes of observing - as Brian said, good collimation and ambient temps are ideal.

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Because of seeing which in the UK is mostly up & down, most of the year. You have to allow for cooling and lots of it. You also have to be ready for lots of time at the ep to catch the really great moments. This could mean loooking into the ep for mins at a time and not pulling your eye away. jupiter is less hard on the eye, Mars is marathon!!.

Don't worry.. you will soon work out the skies we are dealing with.

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What weather conditions give the best/worst seeing? Can I look at the forecast and judge how the seeing is likely to be?

It does depend on local conditions (hills etc) which alter the turbulence in the lower atmosphere depending on the speed & direction of the wind. These you'll have to learn for yourself.

From the weather forecast: if the weather is changeable (rain bands & clear intervals) then the chances are that the jet stream is overhead, this will cause bad seeing, sometimes so rapid that you just get an unfocusable blur rather than a wobbly image. Settled weather usually brings steadier seeing. But no guarantees....

An unfocusable blur can mean an issue with the instrument (usually the optics need to be collimated) and a wobbly image can, but does not always, mean that the scope isn't properly cooled.

Bad seeing is also guaranteed if you're looking over a heat source (through the discharge from a domestic boiler, or stored heat from concrete / tarmac / tiled roofs etc).

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Met Office: UK: forecast cloud I use this website to see if the veiwing is gonna be any good

Don't confuse transparency (cloud cover) with seeing (turbulence). In any case the various cloud cover sites are pretty inconsistent with each other, in my experience none of them are reliable; cloud cover often depends on local conditions, especially hills & lakes/rivers/sea which have effects which do not show up in the area / national forecasts.

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I agree that seeing really restricts magnification - lower it and usually the view is better. I too have not really got a sharp image for anything like a regular period at more than 145x on Jupiter - that said, you can see a lot of detail at 120x with good, well collimated, cool optics.

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I found the conditions varied alot last night. I was re-aligning my finderscope at about 11.20pm using Jupiter and it was clear as a bell. Half an hour later it was nowhere near as good - conditions really were coming and going and also there was a light intermittant breeze which I think was causing some turbulence. When I was centred on Caph to set up my focus for imaging, I could see it changing second to second from sharp to blurred and back again.

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