Saturday, September 1, 2018

Awesomely Clear Night

I could see a yellow cloud band on Saturn.  The air was still a bit turbulent in the early evening, so fine detail like Cassini's Division was only visible for fractions of a second before burbling away.  It was probably better later in the evening, but Saturn set behind the telescope garage.  I need to extend my True North phosphorescent paint line farther away from the garage.  Right now, Jupiter is also behind the garage too early.  I might also draw a parallel True North line farther east of the current line, again to reduce garage occultation.

Mars is not just a very red near-disc to the naked eye, but a substantial disc through the telescope.  There is just the faintest hint of detail on that disc.  Partly the big reflector doesn't produce the detail of the smaller and more precise telescopes; partly Mars is very bright and detail gets washed out in the excess light.  I may use a filter tonight to tone that down.

No astrophotos yet.  In complete darkness, getting the right collection of adapters together was a bit of a pain.  Best try this in daylight on the antennas atop Bogus Basin.

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