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Mars Jan. 10th 2010

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#1 JayinUT

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Posted 15 January 2010 - 02:07 AM

The clouds were gone Sunday night and I finally got out for about 3 hours and was able to observe some open clusters; NGC 1647, NGC 1817, 1807 and NGC 1664. NGC 1647 was by far my favorite. I sketched each OC but I haven't processed them and I'll just leave those on my blog.

I also observed Mars, and made my second planetary sketch this month (I have one on my blog on Jupiter with Io and Europa dancing very close together. I need to redo that sketch but it was a wonderful view of the King of Planets that night).

On Sunday after getting frustrated with my scope (my altitude bearing on the left came loose but its fixed now) I decided to span over to Mars, just to really enjoy here for the first time. Seeing was okay, but had improved from earlier as there was nothing but darkness by this time in the backyard (I didn't deploy my light shields. Too short a session). Transparency in the gunk here was not so good but I did get a good view of the planet. I used my XT10 with a 5mm Hyperion. The northern ice cap was very evident was Syrtis Major, but don't quote me on that cause I'm just learning the layout and names of the features of Mars. I'm not sure and would like input (so I left it out) but I thought I saw just a hint of another ice cap, but it was faint, and came and went as seeing conditions came and went). I did not do any stars as my focus was to just enjoy Mars.

I'll post the digital recording and my original sketch of Mars on my blog this weekend. Looking at the sketch above I realized that Syrtis needs to point more to the north. Nothing as wonderful as what has been posted by others but it was fun. The planets are on my list to observe, not just find, look and say I've been there.


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#2 frank5817

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Posted 15 January 2010 - 12:58 PM

Jay,

That is a beautiful Mars sketch. That is exactly the way it looks without a filter and at that magnification. The colors are spot on. Great job.:waytogo: :bow: :rainbow:

Frank :)

#3 CarlosEH

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Posted 15 January 2010 - 01:00 PM

Jay,

An excellent observation of Mars. You have recorded Syrtis Major on the central meridian (CM). The North Polar Cap (NPC) is brilliant. I hope that you enjoy more observations of Mars soon. Thank you for sharing it with us all.

Carlos

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#4 JayinUT

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Posted 15 January 2010 - 07:57 PM

Frank,

Thank you for your kind comments.

Carlos,

As others have sad, thanks for pointing out the features, that helps so much! Now if our weather would just go back to a pattern of a storm, followed by 3 days of good seeing, followed with another storm, followed by . . .

#5 JayKSC

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Posted 16 January 2010 - 10:16 PM

A fine Mars sketch, Jay. A few nights ago I pointed my scope towards the east at the "strange bright planet" in that region. At first I though it was Saturn, but then learned it was indeed Mars. I was surprised with how large the planetary disc appeared, though certainly did not see the fine details you've been able to capture.

- Jay
South Florida






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