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New Scopes First Planetary Nebula

Ender Of Days

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Got my first Planetary Nebula tonight with the new scope (from the loft window),also it was the first 2 star (manual choice) alignment Ive done with it,

I used Deneb but could only see it with the red dot finder (as it was behind the window frame :)) then used Scheat (Pegasus) as the 2nd star (I chose 2 close stars to see how good/bad/indifferent the alignment would be),

The scope went straight to Jupiter perfectly,over the next hour I checked out the usual M31 M33 M15 M39 etc,and with the confidence high I checked out one of my old star charts ..

NGC 7662 (Planetary Nebula in Andromeda) looked easy so I inputted the name and off the scope went ..

Sadly at this point the clouds grew too thick and I ended up looking at a close up of a cloud :)

But after a good 10 mins the clouds parted long enough for the PN to be very easily visible as a "fuzzy" star,I drew the field down just in time as the rain started to hit the window,

But NGC 7662 is the first PN Ive seen through the new scope,and despite the cloudy skies at least Im getting used to the goto set up,


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  • 3 weeks later...

The Blue Snowball is one of my little secrets for public outreach. It shows off quite well with a bit of power, and there are some stars to use for focus without distracting from the nebula.

I find that the local light polution and the transparency both can work against getting a good color presentation, but at my age (mid-60s) with reduced pupil size and some cataract development, I have trouble detecting color when other, younger people have little difficulty. Don't worry too much about the color; I enjoy the fact that if the field stars look like pinpoints, The Blue Snowball is quite a nice billiard ball that eagerly takes all the power you can throw at it.

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Although I can get it up and running with no worries,last night (being tired) I forgot to return the scope to the home position,and ended up hitting one of the hard stops while aligning :p

All worked out in the end with several Messier's added to the collection :)


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