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Saturday, May 21, 2016

MARS CLOSE

Location:  Little Lepreau, NB, Canada

Date Time:  May 20, 2016 2055-0300hrs ADT

Weather:  @ 2055hrs-Breezy, mostly clear, 12C.  Not dark till 2130hrs.
@0300hrs- see-through fog, hazy, otherwise clear, 4C no wind.
Didn't get dark until after 2130hrs.

Equipment:  Big scope, with 4mm, 9mm, 19mm, 32mm, 1.5x Barlow, yellow filter, and a .6 focal reducer.  Nexus 4 cellphone camera and Canon Rebel Xsi camera with telescope attachment.

Attendance:  MacKenzie C, Maddison C, Leah C, Edward O and David M.

Objective:  To view and image Mars, Saturn, Jupiter and the Moon.

Highlights:

  • Moon was one day before full....was very bright, low in the SE at beginning of observing.
  • Maddison and MacKenzie both were very interested in the Moon.  Maddy noted 'circles' and Kenzie noted 'mountains.  They viewed it through the big scope with the 2", 32mm eyepiece.
  • Leah viewed the nearly Full Moon, Jupiter and Saturn.  Was her first time viewing Saturn.
  • Ed and I both observed Mars and noted how big and bright it was compared to even a few months ago.  We both seen detail across the disk in the form of a smiley face mouth.  We both noticed a faint lightening on one edge of the Red planet that could have been a polar cap.
  • Ed, Leah and I observed Jupiter and all noted how big the gas giant appeared in eyepiece we discussed one of its visible moons, Europa...how it could possibly harbour life.  Ed noticed three cloud stripes across the disk of Jupiter, where I noted two.
  • Ed, Leah and I observed Saturn with Leah noting that this was her first view of the ringed planet.  Definite separation between planet and rings, but no Cassini division observed.
  • No shooting stars or satellites were seen.
Images:




Jupiter


Note smiley face lips.  


Tuesday, May 10, 2016

OBSERVING REPORT FOR MAY 9 AND 10 2016

Location:  Front Porch, Little Lepreau, NB, Canada

Date Time:  May 9/10, 2016  2330-0230hrs

Weather:  Breezy, 6C windchill 3C, partly cloudy to cloudy at times.  Mostly clear after 0100hrs.

Equipment:  Big Scope, little scope, 19mm eyepiece and 32mm eyepiece, DSLR camera.

Attendance:  Myself.

Objective:  To view and image Mars which is close to the Earth at this time, due to Mars and Earths orbital positions.

Highlights:

  • Jupiter was very bright with one of its cloud bands standing out much brighter than the second one.  Three moons were on one side of the planet with the other a long way away on the other side.  One Moon appeared to pass just under another Moon during observing time.
  • Mars was a large bright red disk in the eyepiece.  Huge compared to last year, when it was on the other side of the Sun.  No detail could be made out across the disk.
  • M13 was bright and big and easy to find in Hercules half way up the sky due East at around 2330hrs.  Many, many stars coud be seen across the face and on the outside of the massive globular cluster.
  • Algorab the double star in Corvus was easily split with big scope.  In eyepiece, the main star shown a very bright blue, slightly greenish around the edge, whereas the other lesser star was a faint light reddish.  These stars are very close together in eyepiece.
  • Saturn and a number of its moons stood out nicely in eyepiece. The Moons appear to rotate around the ringed planet in an oval shape, which is much different than how Jupiters Moons appear to orbit it. A Separation in between the Saturns disk and its rings was easily seen.  The rings inclination is quite steep at this time.
  • Searched below Corvus for M68, but did not find it.  Clouds cover this area of the sky shortly after my search began.  Planned a M104, Sombrero Galaxy search, but the clouds remained for a long time in that area.  When they finally passed, that area of the sky was too low in the SW for good observing.  A bright shooting star split Corvus in half just before the clouds moved in.
  • Three shooting stars were seen, maybe more though not confirmed as they were out of the corner of my eye.  No satellites were seen.
Images:

Facing SW at 2330hrs.

Jupiter and 4 of its Moons.

Jupiter.

Facing almost due south at 0144hrs.


Mars

Mars
Uncropped, unprocessed image of Saturn.


Saturn, long exposure image to show Moons.

Saturn.
Uncropped image of double star Algorab.


Double Star Algorab in Corvus.

Corvus facing SW.


Sun from the morning of May 10 with two sunspot groups.

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