Thursday, December 28, 2006

Things are looking promising right now, just got the scope setup outside, should be dark enough to get the alignment done in ten minutes or so. Vega is always the first star to appear closely followed by Capella, Polaris isn't bright enough to be seen through the polarscope as yet.

Just checked on Heavens Above and I have 2 passes of the ISS today, first at 17.05 next at 18.40.

Well, the ISS showed right on time, got a very nice view as it crossed the sky, not the brightest of passes but still very impressive.

Next I set to aligning the scope, as I wasn't planning on taking any photos I was happy with a very rough alignment, with the new (xmas present) 40mm EP it takes quite a while to drift.

First target was the Pleiades, the 40mm EP is perfect for this, got the entire cluster in the same FOV, as I was adjusting focus a satellite whizzed by and appeared to increase in brightness as it crossed the FOV.

Next target was Taurus, I'm not sure if it's just me but the Hyades seems almost quite boring as there are practically no background stars in this area of the sky. As I aligned the scope on Aldebarran amazingly another satellite skimmed across the FOV!

As I stood back to look at the whole sky with the naked eye I spotted another ISS like object moving North at a steady pace. Of course it's because it's so close to sunset that I can see these satellites, later on they are not so easy to see (if at all).

Unfortunately that looks like it for now as the moon is merrily lighting up my southern sky and nicely highlighting all the high cloud that is making the seeing conditions not so good. Did get a nice view of Albireo with the 40mm (25x) and 25mm (40x) EP's.

Left the scope set up waiting for Orion, wanted to see M42 through the new EP. Got to 19.50 and Orion was beginning to show his shoulders guessed, clouds started to roll in!

More later


  1. Happy New Year 2007 Mitch :)


  2. Same to you Mark, let's hope for clearer skies than of late!