Home Forums RAC Main Forum General Discussion Observing tonight? Re: Observing tonight?

Dean Johnson

    Thanks for the heads up about the Callisto shadow transit. I went out there tonight thinking it might be AGNFA, but I didn't realize just how good it was going to be.

    I got set up at 8:30 and could start observing right away with the Moon prominent to the SE. Sure enough, there was the Aristarchus plateau with my last Lunar 100 telescopic object, Vallis Schroteri. That wonderful little lava flow valley stood out like a sore thumb. Just three more naked eye observations on slender cresent waning and waxing Moons and the Lunar 100 can go to the Astronomical League. I also got Mons Agricola, my first target journaled for the Lunar II.

    Saturn was next and the atmosphere was rock steady. Titan and two "amateur moons" close in on the same side as Titan. Was that Iapetus above Titan or just a field star?

    Mars is closing in on Regulus and Saturn and there will be a conjunction of those object about July 5th or so.

    Jupiter came up at 10:20 p.m., but I didn't get a good look at it until 10:50. Then I could see Callisto's shadow and the two other moons on the other side. I started in on the Ursa Major Moving Group, but as I knocked them down one by one, I always checked out Jupiter between each star.

    Wow! What a cool shadow transit event. Another moon came out on Callisto's side and the four moons were as tight into Jupiter as I've ever seen them. I did all the stars in the Big Dipper asterism while this was going on. Epsilon, Beta, Zeta A and B, Gamma and Delta Ursa Majoris, so I've got a good start on the UMMG.

    But the best was yet to come. At 11:54:55, a big BRILLIANT meteor appeared! It went from above Yed Prior in Ophiuchus to just below 32/36 Serpens Caput and petered out halfway to Zubeneschamali in Libra. Holy Smokes! The trajectory was short, but it lasted for a second and a half, was brighter than Jupiter and while the head was blue white, it dropped off three fragments that were golden in color. It looked like a piece off a firework from the 4th of July! 😮

    I got my money's worth tonight. The Flatin Farm hayfield is getting cut tomorrow, so the field will be nice and short for us on the 27th. I also took my daughters digital camera with and took some pics. She'll post them to the forum tomorrow. She's more computer literate than I am.

    I am so happy I got out tonight. It was wonderful. Most definately, AGNFA.