View Full Version : From the Observing Log

2004-May-12, 12:58 AM
In order to celebrate my 1000th post (I've been hanging out here way too much :o ) I decided to post my observing log from last night. Because after all a girl's 1000th post calls for a celebration and what better way to celebrate then a bit of stargazing? :)
Date: 5/10/04
Time: 845pm- 1025pm EDT
Location: Pittsburgh, PA, in suburbia
Equipment: Meade LX90, Barlow Lens, 4 eyepieces, various filters
Conditions: Started out in twilight skies, stopped when the sky became completely overcast (complete with faraway lightning flickers)
Venus- cute little crescent, maybe <25% lit, can see dark unilluminated side because the background is still very blue
Saturn- nicely visible cloud bands, rings have hint of Cassini division
905pm- satellite towards the North (Cosmos 1346 Rocket)
Looked around for comet NEAT only to find it is still too close to the horizon and there are too many trees in the backyard. Looking around the correct star would have likely helped as well... my brother came out at this time to see if there was anything new. He also told me he'd encountered a philosopher in his philosophy homework who said self indulgence is not a key to happiness. I told my brother if he needed an example to disprove the guy I was his existance theorem. :wink:
Castor- A and B maybe 5" apart, C is much further, maybe 75"
932pm- satellite in Leo (Okean O Rocket)
The Beehive- too big for lowest power eyepiece but nice in finderscope and nonetheless lovely, like someone sprinkled a bit of diamond dust around accidentally
950pm- faint satellite seen through finderscope in Cancer (unidentified)
Jupiter- very nice detail on low power eyepiece and Barlow lens combination, incredible cloud detail, all four Galilean moons visible After this there is a very nice detailed picture of the view mentioned above which I labored over a very long time. It shows seven cloud bands, knots in the clouds, and is all colored in to top it off. Pity I don't have a scanner because I am VERY proud of it!
Algieba- most yellow double in the sky, maybe 5" separation on these two
1022- satellite in Ursa Major (Cosmos 2228)
Mizar and Alcor- nice to see the three of them, but the clouds are coming in... nooo, go away go away!!!
I hate clouds. Gotta haul everything inside in case a thunderstorm decides to show.
Good night,
Note 1: most of these objects I also sketched but the Jupiter one was the best
Note 2: all the satellite identities listed after their sightings were figured out later using heavens-above.com
Note 3: the thunderstorm, much to my annoyance, did not show up after all :evil:

2004-May-12, 02:25 PM

You need to get out where you have a clear view of the western horizon so you can see NEAT. It is a wonderful sight now, as it heads for the Beehive cluster.

Funny how those t-storms conspire against us astronomers. You know what happened with your reaction, but, if one doesn't bring in the scope, watch what happens then! Monsoon! :wink:

2004-May-12, 03:16 PM
Yep, I know it. It was too cloudy last night (ANOTHER thunderstorm! amazing yet irritating!) so I'll try my luck tonight.