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#76 Asbytec

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 04:25 AM

MARK! Yike, how embarrassing. Sorry about that.

You're hitting a stride, Mark. Your write up sounds like an observation, describing what you saw and what you think. And it's apparent to me, you're milking your refractor nicely.

Yea, getting old and helpless. I am making strides, though, dressed myself today. Just so ya know. But, I have been so focused on Jupiter at the expense of everything, including clean shorts and letting the trash pile up. You'll see. :)

(Are these comments becoming part of a permanent record in your Sketchbook? :lol: )

#77 Chopin

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 06:32 AM

Ps--danke for informing me of your "dressing routine". Next time warn me before hand so I can put on some 70s porno music; played backwards, with Satanic messages.


Hey Mark, with 70's porn music you don't need to add that stuff. The music pretty much stands by itself. :lol:

#78 Asbytec

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Posted 17 December 2012 - 07:15 AM

I think I have an 8-track with some porn oldies on it. Sound track, I think. Ah, the memories, cruisin' with my girl... :)

#79 stray1

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 02:15 AM

http://alpo-j.asahik...12/j121217z.htm

The faint marking in the EZ is what I believe that I saw the other morning for a second or two. This is, of course, the EB; a feature that I have never given a second thought.

What I'm wondering is: if I think that I saw something that I wasn't even looking for, is it possible that I imagined it? Is it probable?

http://alpo-j.asahik...12/j121216z.htm

Second set by Mishina. These two photos represent Jupiter as I might see it in good viewing through the EP. The colors are accurate though more saturated all the way around.

Based on these I attribute the lighter shading along the north edge of the SEB against the darker shading of the belt itself as explaining the white "smudges" and the dark "spots" that I thought that I was seeing in earlier reports.

Of course, there is also the photo by Comolli (bottom pic) that clearly shows two dark spots along the southern edge of the SEB which closely match my sketch of the 14th.

Currently, I am uncertain of anything. Once I get another string of clear nights I will attempt to confirm through further observation.

:grin:

-stray-

#80 Asbytec

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 04:09 AM

It's an interesting topic, Mark, about what we think we see. Especially when we're not even looking for it. Actually, that happens all the time. Something will just show itself unexpectedly. If you happened to be looking in that area, you get lucky. Really, much of Jupiter is not "easy" to see. It just doesn't fall onto your retina. The main belts, the GRS, some festoons are all pretty easy. The rest can be quite challenging and require increasing amounts of time and opportunity. But, with time, you can fill a sketch with those more challenging sightings. And more often than not, be right.

In my experience, more often than not, something is there. It might not always be clear, it is often hard to place and describe accurately. And it's difficult to see, of course, if you wait for it to appear again. But, I suspect it comes down to confidence. Observing images helps build confidence, often they will show something was indeed there. So, over time, when those unexpected observations happen you can be reasonably confident the fleeting feature was seen because you are more confident in your abilities.

A perfect example happened last night. Along the northern edge of the SEB I briefly caught three protrusions sticking up into the EZ. I was stunned at first, but very sure I saw them. I saw them well enough to actually count them. So my level of confidence was high. Upon further examination (/after/ posting the sketch that included them), they were indeed there. (IMO, sketch first, check later. Using an image to gain confidence is one thing, using it to confirm before sketching is robbing you of the observation.)

Now, there are times when looking for something specific helps to see it. For example, white ovals in the southern hemisphere. Seeing these tiny features, it really helps to understand how they behave and, at first, exactly where they are. Once you realize how small they are and how they appear (or not) with seeing, it becomes easier to spot them anywhere. I often study a big one to understand how it looks and behaves and expect the others to follow suit. That behavior adds to confidence of your sightings despite them being difficult to see.

S0, yea, if you catch something unexpected, more often than not something caused it. It is entirely probably it was imagined. It's also entirely probable it was real. How do you know at the time? I guess that depends on how familiar you are with Jupiter and your own level of confidence. Sketch it, and ask forgiveness later. Don't be afraid to be wrong. :)

#81 stray1

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 04:36 AM

What I'm also wondering is if I occasionally use my non-dominant eye (left) to observe, if this might also ferret out more details? I've tried this for a few minutes each of my last couple observing sessions.

As of my most recent session, I've also tried viewing with both eyes open while concentrating on the image in my dominant eye (right). The problem with this is that I fear I may be projecting something from the non-"viewing" eye onto the image that my brain is "seeing"...the border between my driveway and lawn, for example.

I'm considering purchasing one of those eye patches ("Aaarrrh, matey") from the drug store which will effectively "blind" the non-viewing eye even though it is open.

:grin:

-stray-

#82 Asbytec

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Posted 19 December 2012 - 04:50 AM

That's a good question. Whatever eye works best for you. I am left eye dominate but observe mainly with my right eye. Dunno why, really, just habit.

Yes, both eyes open is more comfortable. Squinting all the time tends to blur the vision in my other eye making it useless for a while. An eye patch is okay, but wearing glasses makes sketching difficult. Gotta pull it off every time to put my glasses on. A cupped hand over the other eye works just as well, let it stare into the darkness in the palm of your hand to prevent overlapping images. Those overlapping images are too distracting, IMO.

Some folks say to have some ambient lighting. That's probably a good idea - to prevent dark adaption. Trick is, not to allow it to become distracting. Personally, I have ambient light - for once, the neighbors security light is welcome. But, also, I use an eyepiece cup to prevent peripheral distractions. With the other eye relaxed and staring into darkness, Jupiter is the only thing that makes it's way to the brain. Surely that helps.

But, you can try your dominate eye and see if it actually does better. It might. Use both, switch up once in a while. You might even find out one eye is a little better at detail and the other might excel at something else, like color.

If you get a patch, though, you're gonna need bird seed. For the parrot, of course. Just a hassle. :)

#83 stray1

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 02:09 AM

If you get a patch, though, you're gonna need bird seed. For the parrot, of course. Just a hassle. :)


A parrot?

Oh, no, Norme, that just would not work. Consider this scenario:

Me on a starry night all leaned over in my chair and glaring at Jupiter through the EP (I have my eye patch on). My pet parrot, Polly, sits nearby on a perch munching bird seed (she’s not allowed to perch on the rig because she makes it quiver; nor on my shoulder because she inevitably poops on my shirt).

Me (thinking aloud): Hmmm, there’s a festoon…maybe two…is that a third on the F limb?

Polly: AWWWK! You don’t see that!

Me (tinkering with the focus knob): Be quiet, Polly. I’m onto something here. Looks like something might be going on in the EZ…is that the EB?

Polly: You don’t see that! AWWWK!

Me (adjusting the RA axis, slightly): Polly, please, you’re distracting me…whoa! Check it out! I think I can actually see the GRS this time!

Polly (flapping her wings): AWWWK! You don’t see that! AWWWK! You don’t see that! AWWWK!

Naw, eye patch or not, a parrot will not work. Incidentally, I do not actually own a parrot named Polly. My cat, Panzer, would shred something like that.

:grin:

-stray-

#84 Asbytec

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 04:18 AM

Well, show Polly a cracker and ask her if she want's one. No matter the reply, just tell her she doesn't see it, either.

Take that from me, the Parrot whisperer.

Or, try this. Sometimes girlfriend gawked at my sketches. So, when she implied I didn't see that, I showed her. Her face lit up when she realized there were clouds inside that "blue" belt. :)

#85 stray1

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 12:23 AM

Finally a clear night. Checked in with Stellarium and saw that the GRS would make an appearance. Spent a few minutes glassing the moon and Eta Cas while waiting for Jupiter to clear the trees.

Then spent about two-and-a-half hours observing, using every combination of EP and Barlow (and without Barlow). Wasn't the greatest of viewing conditions; wasn't the worst. Bright moonlight probably played a role in this.

Did not detect the GRS There was a time or two that I thought “maybe” I could see a darker smear; nothing definite.

What I did observe was a darker band along the south edge of the SEB that marked GRS wake. Did not detect any turbulence in the belt itself. (NOTE: I’ve indicated on the sketch approximate position of GRS per Stellarium at the time that I generated the sketch, but this should not be taken to mean that I actually saw it). What is strange is that in the past I have definitely detected activity in the SEB (it usually appears thinner) caused by GRS; tonight, nothing other than the darker band I mentioned. The SEB appeared solid from limb to limb.

Could maybe see something going on in the NEB. Not sure what it was (if anything). Festoons were very dim. No evidence of the EB. NTB seemed broken up this evening.

Three cups of coffee, a runny nose, and not much else.

Good thing I do not have a parrot. She would have frozen solid.

:grin:

-stray-

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#86 Asbytec

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 01:34 AM

The GRS is at system II 190, so good chance the GRS was off the preceding limb. Trailing the GRS at some point, there are features in the NEB. In any case, not sure how prominent the GRS is in more modest apertures. You have seen it?

You're learning to see finer details on Jupiter. And it's best for parrots to be kept indoors this time of year. :)

#87 stray1

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 02:41 AM

The GRS is at system II 190, so good chance the GRS was off the preceding limb. Trailing the GRS at some point, there are features in the NEB. In any case, not sure how prominent the GRS is in more modest apertures. You have seen it?


Norme,

I've probably messed up my times and dates on this sketch converting from EST to UT (this was one of those times when the UT date changed while EST date remained the same). According to Stellarium the GRS should have been visible from about 20:30-00:30 EST. I went out at 20:30 EST and spent about two and a half hours observing, specifically looking for GRS. When I came inside (due to the cold...brrrr) at approx. 23:45 the GRS had not yet reached the P limb (again, according to Stellarium). It was there, I just did not see it.

I have seen what I believe to be the GRS (and its effects) through the 90mm in better viewing conditions. The moon, though not full, was really lighting up my backyard tonight. Heck, I didn't even need a red flashlight to find my way around. Add to this a really, really light covering of snow on the grass, ambient light off of white siding, lights on in my house and around the 'hood (I usually observer much later) and it does not exactly make for the most famous of conditions.

Meanwhile, an experiment of mine has proved successful. I replaced that awful, thick, sticky, gooey focuser "lube" that came with the scope with my own concoction--petroleum jelly (i.e., Vaseline) mixed with a liberal spritz of Remington gun lube (with Teflon). Minimal backlash and buttery smooth even in sub-freezing temperatures. Was able to get diffraction rings around the Jovian moons (rare for me) with ease. Heck, its almost too smooth. It'll probably have to be replaced with something once the weather warms up again in the spring but, for now, I no longer need a pipe wrench to adjust my focus on these cold winter nights.

I'm not giving up on a positive detection of GRS, but it'll have to wait for better conditions. Meanwhile, Luna seems intent on demanding my attention. Unfortunately, this clear night was an anomaly...rain, clouds, snow coming my way...

:grin:

-stray-

#88 stray1

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 03:07 AM

Major malfunction on my part. The sketch is dated 21-22 Dec 2012...this should actually read 22-23 Dec 2012 (per UT). All messed up...too much caffeine?

:o

-stray-

#89 Asbytec

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 05:04 AM

Mark, System II at 42 fits better. There are some bright NEB features there. Nicely done.

Pipe wrench... :lol:

If Luna calls, that's kind of like mother nature callin. Check it out.

#90 stray1

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 10:26 PM

Check out the NEB action in these APs by Go and Walker. That is probably what I detected yesterday.

http://alpo-j.asahik...12/j121223z.htm

:grin:

-stray-

#91 Asbytec

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 10:38 PM

Yep, especially Walker's image at bottom. That's a good catch. I caught them, too, a little ahead of that CM.

http://www.cloudynig...5577121/page...

Here's some maps, fairly current. They show some NEB activity from about 360 to 40 degrees, system II (second Map.)

http://alpo-j.asahik...12/j121220r.htm

Merry Christmas, Mark. :)

#92 stray1

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 04:31 AM

Finally, after nearly three weeks of overcast skies I got some EP time. Unfortunately, by the time I arrived home from work, Jupiter had already set behind the house. After checking with Stellarium I realized that Saturn should be high enough in the E/SE to be worth the time to set up the rig and take a peek. Glad that I did.

This is the first time...ever...in fifty years of trudging the Earth that I have actually seen this object through a telescope. I did not have a lot of time to look this morning and had to wade through ankle-deep crusted snow to find an adequate spot in the backyard to set-up. The 60mm offered a tempting view, but I was unable to get a clear focus with it as I was forced to slew nearly horizontal (meaning that I had to stand on my toes to get a look).

The view through the 90mm was breathtaking! I achieved a clear, clean split between planet and rings, but the view was unsteady as I was forced to stand next to the scope (rather than sit as I usually do while observing). Still, this was an outstanding, memorable experience. Will definitely watching the early morning skies from here on out.

:grin:

-stray-

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#93 Asbytec

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 07:10 AM

I remember seeing Saturn for the first time nearly 40 years ago through a Sears refractor. It was stunning. I ran up the street to grab a friend, only to return in time to see Dickie running down the street with my scope - tripod and all. He wanted to spy on his girlfriend and was yelling at us to follow. To this day, I can still see and hear those slow motion cables bouncing and clanging.

Anyway, it is a stunning thing to see. Saturn will take as much power as you can throw at it. When the seeing is steady, Cassini's division should show up, too. The ring tilt looks good enough to show it. The banding on Saturn is not as distinct as Jupiter, but should be visible. Good luck, been waiting for it to rise a bit earlier.

#94 Chopin

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 09:29 AM

Nice, Mark. That is a terrific representation of what Saturn looks like through my 72ED with the 7mm ortho. One of my favorite ways to view is using my 15x85 bino. It's awesome to split the rings from the body at 15x in stable atmosphere. I can't wait to watch you discover the planet as magnifications and perceptions increase this season.

#95 stray1

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 05:33 AM

Hi Norme, Jason,

Yep, I'm definitely gonna make some time for this one (Saturn). I cannot wait for a good night/morning when I can sit down and take an extended (hour or so) look!

Thanks for commenting! (even though this first sketch stinks)

:grin:

-stray-

Ps-- isn't Mars supposed to be available for study this year? I'm thinking that I really need to invest in some planetary EPs.

#96 Asbytec

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 10:05 AM

Not sure when Mars is due, usually every other year, I believe.

I am totally wrapped up in doubles at the moment, and hope to keep up with your Saturn observations. I will be traveling in the US and will miss Saturn this season.

#97 Chopin

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 10:31 AM

Hi Norme, Jason,

Yep, I'm definitely gonna make some time for this one (Saturn). I cannot wait for a good night/morning when I can sit down and take an extended (hour or so) look!

Thanks for commenting! (even though this first sketch stinks)

:grin:

-stray-

Ps-- isn't Mars supposed to be available for study this year? I'm thinking that I really need to invest in some planetary EPs.


Nah, it doesn't stink! Quite a good sketch, actually. :)

#98 Chopin

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 10:48 AM

Not sure when Mars is due, usually every other year, I believe.

I am totally wrapped up in doubles at the moment, and hope to keep up with your Saturn observations. I will be traveling in the US and will miss Saturn this season.


I was just playing with Stellarium and it seems Mars starts becoming observable in the pre-dawn hour this summer. If Stellarium is accurate, 7/22/2013 looks like a sub 1º conjunction between Mars and Jupiter. If you have access to a horizon (Eastern, of course) low enough you might catch it. Could make an awesome sketching target.

No Saturn, Norme?!? No travel scope? :bawling:

#99 Asbytec

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Posted 09 January 2013 - 11:35 AM

Well, naaa...not gonna drag mine along, mount and all. I had to explain to airport officials what my CG5 mount was. It had wires and push buttons, they were suspicious. I showed them the owner's manual.

Saturn, maybe...time permitting.






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