Jupiter in my new Mark V binos.
Posted 04 December 2012 - 10:51 AM
Seeing was maybe 2 to 3 arc seconds, so not great, but there were "waves" of very settled seeing lasting a few seconds at a time, where seeing turned quite good. Lots of patience. But the binoviewers make that easy now, and I can see the benefit in my obsering.
At 165x in the C14 (Mark Vs/H24s), Jupiter was stunning.. Lots of detail everywhere. Major extened wisps of festooning, a split in the northern belt, and clear and distinct structure, and lots of it in the northern equitorial belt. I was stunned at how rich the detail was even at 165x. Jupiter is larger (true size) than I have observed it before in binoviewers and I had good transparency last night, but I was still amazed at the richness of detail even at 165x. Just dripping with detail and lightly saturated color.
With higher powers, more resolution was achieved, but at the expense of longer periods of waiting for the best seeing.
Skipping ahead to the Mark V/H17s, about 305x, I only had a half dozen settled viewing periods before low clouds came in (and actually between clouds because for some reason clouds often bring in steadier seeing) but those periods gave me some of my best Jupiter observing ever.
The amount of festooning really surprised me. The larger thin, arc-like festoons were complimeted by a lot of faint structure in the equitorial region. There were very faint swirls mixed into the pattern and while difficult to see distinct shapes, there was enough albedo variation to suggest that within the equitorial region, there is a lot going on. I don't think I ever had this sensation of so much structure being present before. I credit this to the angular size of Jupiter at the present, and to the use of binoviewers. I really am getting my best obeserving ever these days..
Anyway, the structure in the northern equitorial belt was lavish. There is just on other way to describe it. there was detail within detail with large pale wiggles and distinct knuckles at their bends throughout the belt. Really shocking. I have never seen the NEB so alive with energy. So much structure that it was hard to take it all in when those settled periods would occur. More than I have ever seen before though, for sure. Oh to have had better seeing.
The Northern belt showed a distinct bifurcation. This morning I looked at an image taken in the UK last night, and I could see that this is being caused by a dark edge on the northern side giving the appearnce of a split. In the eyepiece it looked like an interstate highway views from 30,000 feet. Long and narrow lanes. Very distinct impression that it was two belts, but the image shows it to be one with a light streak running though it.
The northern edge of the dark edge has obvious peaks extending into the lighter region between the polar shading. Lots of them. Like little peaks on a lemon meringue pie. Yum, I love pie. The edge was clearly jagged though, but not regular enough to be low saw teeth, but plenty of them.
I ran out of clear sky, but no obvious ovals were seen in the south, but I did see them in the image I mentioned. I was so captivated by the structure in the NEB though that when seeing settled, I would immediatly aquire that area and attack it for detail. Ovals seem tame by comparison to this anaconda of activigty in the NEB.
Nothing on the moons.. Even Ganymede which I love observing, but again, I could not divert my attention from the equator and the NEB when the seeing settled. There was just sooooo much structure visible on Jupiter that I could not leave it.
What a night. Even at 165x, it ranks as one of my best Jupiter observations ever because at 165x, I was seeing a great deal of this detail but at 305x, it was evident that I was really only scratching the surface at 165x.
Maybe the best nights of Jupiter obeservations I have ever done.. I was so sad when the clouds came becaue the GRS was not quite around the limb. I have yet to really have a chance to study that area at higher powers in the binoviewers and am dying in anticipation.
Fantastic. Just fantastic.
Posted 04 December 2012 - 11:30 AM
Posted 05 December 2012 - 01:08 PM
Posted 05 December 2012 - 02:54 PM
There is no magic in the C14 or any other design out there. To do better planetary work you just need a lot of good quality aperture. It can be in a dob or anything else.
So, still have my eye on a Go-To dob, but every time I get close, something seems to come up that makes me kick the purchase further down the road. This time it was new Binoviers.