Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Another clear evening, although after a long day at work I wasn't feeling up to much tonight.

However, I'd used Heavens Above to predict an ISS siting from my front door at 18:32 GMT. So set up the camera with a wide angle lens and a bulb shutter setting.

Sure enough, the ISS showed on time and was visible for much longer than yesterday, way past Orion and into the distance before it disappeared. Quite spooky really.

So, rushed back in and loaded the image to the PC, I could just make out the track, problem is I think that it was too light, Orion was barely visible at this time. Therefore contrast etc. meant the track wouldn't show. The problem with getting long exposures correct is a trade off of time versus light, to avoid overexposure you compensate normally by stopping down the aperture, doing that in this case means the track is very faint. Never mind, I will try again, especially as I have got the hang of watching for it coming.

BTW in order to use the Heavens Above predictor correctly you need to enter your location, which is quite easy as a list of towns is in the database.

Also had a quick look at Orion, Saturn and started to see some of the clusters low in the southern sky but these will take a lot of work I think.

Found out tonight that Arcturus in Bootes is the 4th brightest star in the Northern sky, it certainly was bright last night.

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