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#1 Lenny

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Posted 29 March 2013 - 03:51 AM

Hi:

 

 

The following is a observing report from 3/23/12:

 

 

I have been trying to find the comet Panstarrs 2011 L4 for the last week or so.
Time and the condition of the sky has not cooperated, till last night. I found
the comet just a few degrees above the Horizon at about 7:30 in the evening
using my 10 X 50 Celestron Nature Bincos. I was viewing from my elevated deck
of my back porch. I would estimate it as being 20 degrees toward the North. I
was impressed that the core of the comet was very bright, almost star like.
It's tail seemed to bend a bit to the North as it fanned out. It had a reddish
orange tint which might have been caused by the distortion due to its position
in the sky. In fact, it danced a good bit due to the unsteady sky normally
present at the Horizon. None the less I kept the comet in view till it passed
under the Horizon. It was very nice.

I had previously set out my 8", F6 Orion XTI DOB in the front yard. When I
finished with the comet I went out front and turned that scope toward Jupiter.
At 120X due to the use of my Celestron 10MM X-Cell eyepiece the view was fine.
However when I attempted to up the mag to 200X distortion was the result. The
planet itself maintained a sharp edge, but the details on the planet dimmed as
mag increased. That has been the case all winter with Jupiter. Still I enjoyed
the view as a backed down to 160X provided by my 15MM Meade QC and a Celestron
Ultima barlow.

Next, I ran the xt8i through a tour of March. I picked off a few galaxies such
as M94, M81, and M82. They were not very clear as the slight haze had developed
which spread the moon shine. I was able to slightly off set that light by the
use of my Orion SkyGlow filter.
As my hands began to turn numb I went in.

A few hours later I put out my Orion ED 80MM F7.5 APO for a look at Saturn. The previous
morning at 6:00 I was able to pick it off with that scope. Tonight, at
approximately 12:00 it was just above the horizon. The distortion was pretty
bad, but I stayed with it for about a 1/2 hour and then went inside calling it a
night. I was unable to site the Cassini division nor any other detail except
what appeared to be ring shade on the planet.

In all it was a wonderful night. To quote advice an older amateur astronomer
gave me years ago, "You should not be so concerned about what you cannot see,
but what you can see."

 

 

Lenny
 



#2 SlipperySquid

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Posted 29 March 2013 - 06:40 AM

Great write up Lenny, nice to see you are getting the chance to hit the skies! 

 

Wish I had the chance to see the Panstarrs but unfortunately the clouds where against me.

 

Looking forward to reading more,

 

Clear skies sir!

 

Matt.



#3 Neil

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Posted 29 March 2013 - 07:35 AM

Fantastic write up Lenny, really enjoyed reading it.

 

I agree with you, sometimes you just need to back off the magnification, relax and enjoy what you can see. It all to easy to get worked up and frustrated about what you can't see. As an imager myself I fall all to often into this trap! Every now and again I find it liberating just to put an eyepiece in the telescope and look without having to worry about the ccd camera's.

 

We all should do this more often, especially on those marginal night when images would normally wright them off!

 

Looking forward to seeing PanSTARRS so weather permitting.

 

Clear Skies

 

 

Neil.



#4 Starlock

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Posted 29 March 2013 - 05:43 PM

good read and nicely summed up:)






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