Home Forums RAC Main Forum General Discussion Observing tonight?

Viewing 15 posts - 451 through 465 (of 2,607 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #10697
    Dean Johnson
    Participant

      I just called Eagle Bluff. They have nothing going on tonight and will have the parking lot lights off for us.

      Anyone interested?

      #10698
      Luka B
      Participant

        I have interest, but I'm just worried about the wind chill. Prediction is -14 to -19 , with temps 1 to -4. If you're up for that I would give it a try.

        #10699
        Luka B
        Participant

          Considering the cold, Eagle bluff is off. I may however, do a little observing or imaging at Keller. Probably around 7 PM or so, but probably a pretty short time.

          #10700
          Dean Johnson
          Participant

            Hello astronomy fans. It was a long cold day in the woods. Tonights temps aren't going to be pretty. Discretion is the better part of valor.

            We'll try again next week.

            Good luck locally. I'm getting another position of Mars from my deck.

            Semper Fi, Dean.

            #10701
            Dean Johnson
            Participant

              Well, I went out for a half an hour on my deck with my binoculars and got a naked eye and binocular position of Mars. It was so cold my pen wouldn't work right and I had to put it inside my coat under my arm to get the ink flowing. I had to do that 3 times.

              Mars shows a tiny disc even in binoculars and I can see it moving night by night against the background of stars. It's like following an asteroid, only LOTS easier because it is so big and bright.

              I took looks at M41 and the Orion Nebula, but they were quick. Subzero temps were killing my fingers.

              I eagerly look forward to warm nights of 10F or so.

              #10702
              rabomgaars
              Participant

                Dean, Congratulations on not getting frost bite!  I went out early this morning to try the itty bitty Celestron first scope to look at the moon.
                I actually just stood in the back doorway and held the scope in my hands – not recommended.  But it was beautiful anyway.  SB

                #10703
                Luka B
                Participant

                  I was out on Friday for a bit over 2 hours. It wasn't too bad. I mostly got cold in the pants, I'll need to get some good bibs. And my breath froze to anything around my face, including eyelashes.  I did get some good data though, of M42. I'll post it in the images section. I could've probably stayed out quite a bit longer as no part of me was getting numb, but the equipment wasn't liking the cold much.

                  #10704
                  Jeff Newland
                  Participant

                    Somewhat hazy out there, but I think I may head to Keller tonight.  Been awhile since I have been out, so have to stop being lazy and get out there.  πŸ™‚
                    I would hope to be there before 7 and probably be gone by 10.  Winter observing sure is nice.  You can get 3-4 hours in before bedtime.  ;D

                    #10705
                    Jeff Newland
                    Participant

                      I'll definitely be heading out to Keller tonight.  Come on out.  πŸ™‚

                      #10706
                      Luka B
                      Participant

                        It does look nice out there. Sadly I can't cancel my commitments for tonight.

                        #10707
                        John Preston
                        Participant

                          Trying to image from my driveway but the winds are making it difficult.

                          #10708
                          Dean Johnson
                          Participant

                            Hello astronomy fans. I got out last night for two and a half hours. It was nice at first, but then the winds really started raising problems.

                            I started out with Polaris for polar alignment, then Sirius for a collimation check and to see if I could spot Sirius B. (No luck. Has any RAC member ever spotted it?) Then M41 that lovely open cluster below Sirius, then the Orion Nebula to just celebrate having my scope out again.

                            Then I got down to more serious stuff. I checked out R Leporis, a variable star below Rigel near 31 Leporis. This is also known as "Hind's Crimson Star". It is now near maximum brightness and it has a very nice red color. It reminded me of a tiny Mars.

                            Then on to Mars for naked eye, binocular and telescopic observations. Right now Mars is moving away from the Sickle of Leo and is not quite halfway back to M44 in Cancer.
                            It is especially interesting to see it change position in binoculars because of its movement from night to night against the faint background stars. Telescopically, I could clearly see the North Polar Ice Cap, but by then it was so windy, I could not make out any definate surface features.

                            My final observation was of VY Canis Majoris that Dr. Roberta Humphreys gave a talk about in October. It is also a red variable star, not as bright as R Leporis, that took some careful star hopping to get to. I could see no nebula. I think that will take a bigger scope to see than my little 8 inch.

                            #10709
                            John Preston
                            Participant

                              Pulled an all nighter and got to see many, many objects. Starting with M1,63,65,66,78,43,42,94,95,105,96,58,59,49,104,31,110,32 to name a few. Also did some imaging on M1, M104, and NGC2392 the Eskimo Nebula. But as usual the winds we're being difficult and didn't get any real good images but sure was fun looking at everything.

                              Actually nights like last night would be great if folks just wanted to stop by and see these objects on the computer screen, I do this from my driveway and we can always go inside to warm up if needed. Let me know if anyone is interested in doing this sometime and I would be more than happy to bring the rig out for some fun viewing the electronic way πŸ˜‰

                              #10710
                              Dean Johnson
                              Participant

                                Ya know what? I think a young talented guy with thousands of dollars of imaging equiptment just might be able to pull in an image of the nebulosity surrounding VY Canis Majoris. It would make for a fabulous follow up image to put into the next RAC newsletter!

                                That is, IF, we could possibly find a guy like that!  πŸ˜‰

                                #10711
                                sregener
                                Participant

                                  I did my first official Saturn observation for ALPO yesterday morning.  Seeing wasn't the greatest.  I got to try out my new Tom Osypowski equatorial platform, and let me tell you Dob owners – if you do any observing at high powers (or, like me, tried to avoid doing so because tracking was so difficult) you have got to get one of these things!  I did the roughest of alignments – just generally pointed it north – and Saturn stayed in the eyepiece at 266X for a couple of minutes.  I could even do things like swap filters on my eyepiece and not lose my target.  With a little tweaking of settings, I was up to 5 minutes before Saturn wasn't quite centered and I wanted to nudge it – no doubt because the platform was made for 43 degrees lat instead of my 45 – and I didn't do anything to correct for it.  Maybe next time I'll do a more accurate polar alignment.  This thing will be great for sharing the views with others, too.  I'll have to pitch my canned "the earth rotates, and at these high powers, you can almost feel the earth moving under you…" speech.  Sketching was much easier, too.

                                Viewing 15 posts - 451 through 465 (of 2,607 total)
                                • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.