A Conversation for H2G2 Astronomy Society Home Page
turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...) Started conversation Dec 11, 2009
Now that we have some cloud-free skies in North Wales (start a public enquiry, I hear you say!) and I have finished my studies I am going to start a Messier Marathon.
Not a race but an effort to reintroduce myself to the wonders of the Northern sky!
Feel free to join in.
Metal Chicken Posted Dec 11, 2009
What a good idea. I could do with a refresher course in the night sky myself, the scope's not been out once this year. Come to that even the binnies have been pretty much unused except for daytime bird-spotting.
Here's hoping for some clear skies so we can at least find the naked eye fuzzies
turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...) Posted Dec 11, 2009
I think my 'scope has reported me to the RSPCT for cruelty and neglect!
I'll report progress back here every so often - hopefully starting tonight!
turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...) Posted Dec 11, 2009
Well you can hang fire with the public inquiry...
I know - it IS Wales after all! More luck tomorrow night if the Man Flu doesn't get me first.
Here is a question for you both. Do we stick to the list made by the man himself, which officially stops at M103 ( http://www.delphes.net/messier/xtra/history/mcathist.html ) or do we include them all up to M110 - http://www.delphes.net/messier/data3.html ?
Deek Posted Dec 12, 2009
I don't mind either way, but FWIW we might as well go the whole hog of 110.
If I remember awright, there is some controversy about what M110 actually is, but if we it as the SEDS list you refer to, that should do.
But anyway, if my result is anything like my last foray into Messier, I probably won't get anywhere near the total anyway.
turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...) Posted Dec 12, 2009
A modest start.
Site - dark back garden with some street light and house lights from neighbours. Not great.
Aspect - facing South.
Time - 22.50GMT (UT) to 23.00
Sky - Orange to approx. 50 degrees due to haze. Some wicked sky glow and house lights meant that observing was not very good so only lasted 10 minutes in the cold (-2ºC).
Optics - Naked eye and Bushnell 10x42 roof prism binos.
Seen - M45 The Pleiades. Not hard to see even on a bad night. High enough to make out many start but no gas/dust.
- M31 Galaxy in Andromeda - can't claim to have seen its companions though.
- M42 and M43 the Orion nebula. Could definitely see all the gas and dust haze around the stars with the binos. Couldn't really separate them.
Too much haze to see much else.
Deek Posted Dec 13, 2009
Good start nevertheless.
All clouded over for me though.
If you're out tonight keep one eye open for Geminids.
Metal Chicken Posted Dec 14, 2009
Better start than mine...
In the brief interval before clouding over on Saturday night I counted The Pleiades (M45) and the Orion nebula (M42/M43).
And 1 Geminid.
Deek Posted Dec 16, 2009
Very cold last night but also clear after midnight.
Using the binoculars I started with the old favourite M42 the Great Orion Nebula.
Then M43. That’s more difficult to make out still clear enough.
M45 The Pleiades cluster. Neither could I make out the illuminated gas.
M35 an open cluster near the feet of Gemini.
Also spent a little time on Mars which is getting brighter. Still no meteors though.
Gnomon - time to move on Posted Dec 17, 2009
Photos of the Pleiades always show the nebulosity, but it is extremely faint and is not visible in telescopes at all, as it is too faint compared with the brightness of the stars. It is only in long exposure photography that it shows up.
turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...) Posted Dec 18, 2009
Yes, you are right. David Malin has a lot to answer for... http://mstecker.com/pages/appmalin.htm
Deek Posted Dec 19, 2009
turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...) Posted Dec 21, 2009
No more Messier objects in the last few nights but a great placing of Jupiter and a crescent Moon setting as I came home from a long and tiresome day. Really lifts the spirits does such wonder in the skies!
Deek Posted Dec 22, 2009
Yes it sure does.
I was looking for that too. I could just about make out the Moon this evening through thin ish cloud, but not Jupiter.
Not much chance of spotting anything else tonight.
Gnomon - time to move on Posted Dec 22, 2009
The Moon and Jupiter were really spectacular together last night! I could see them in a light blue sky just after sunset, and then for the rest of the evening until Jupiter set.
Metal Chicken Posted Dec 22, 2009
Yes that crescent moon & Jupiter conjunction was very pretty and kept my spirits high while driving across the icy Pennines yesterday. Clouded over by the time I got home though so no more Messier objects yet, this is getting to be a frustratingly slow start.
Deek Posted Jan 20, 2010
17 Jan 2010.
Quite clear but a hint of mist/fog in the air. Early evening with binoculars.
In Auriga, M36 M37 and M38 clusters. Faint but discernible. Turned the 'scope on Orion Nebula. The Trapezium was clear enough and M43 above M42.
Went back to the binnies for Praesepe M44, and nearby, M67 another fainter cluster
turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...) Posted Feb 11, 2010
I can't believe how few opportunities have come my way recently, mostly due to cloud and tiredness.
Nothing more to report but I'll try and go out this weekend.
Deek Posted Feb 11, 2010
Yes it's much the same here. In the odd few evenings I get free it's just been so cold or wet I've hardly ventured out.
A week or so ago there was a fantastic red sky just at sunset. It was clear right to the horizon and I just caught a glimpse of Jupiter. It's bright but it's so low that it has to be clear all the way to the horizon.
I'm at work just at that time of day but take a wander outside to the car park trying to get a glimpse of Jupiter/Venus together.
Key: Complain about this post
- 1: turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...) (Dec 11, 2009)
- 2: Metal Chicken (Dec 11, 2009)
- 3: turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...) (Dec 11, 2009)
- 4: Deek (Dec 11, 2009)
- 5: turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...) (Dec 11, 2009)
- 6: Deek (Dec 12, 2009)
- 7: turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...) (Dec 12, 2009)
- 8: Deek (Dec 13, 2009)
- 9: Metal Chicken (Dec 14, 2009)
- 10: Deek (Dec 16, 2009)
- 11: Gnomon - time to move on (Dec 17, 2009)
- 12: turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...) (Dec 18, 2009)
- 13: Deek (Dec 19, 2009)
- 14: turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...) (Dec 21, 2009)
- 15: Deek (Dec 22, 2009)
- 16: Gnomon - time to move on (Dec 22, 2009)
- 17: Metal Chicken (Dec 22, 2009)
- 18: Deek (Jan 20, 2010)
- 19: turvy (Fetch me my trousers Geoffrey...) (Feb 11, 2010)
- 20: Deek (Feb 11, 2010)