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Jupiter During Daylight

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#1 Rachal

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 08:46 AM

About 5:00 CDT 12-21 I spotted Jupiter with my binoculars then was able to see it fairly easily with my unaided eyes. The sun was pretty low in the west and set about 5:11. I find that sometime the seeing is fairly steady before it starts cooling off. Although Jupiter was only about 20° up, the view through my C6 was pretty nice, but began to worsen by 5:30 or so. I believe Jupiter will be in the general vicinity of the moon this weekend, so if I can locate it with my binoculars much earlier in the day, I think it will be interesting to see if I can spot it without any optical aid.

Anybody had any luck spotting it with the unaided eye when the sky is normal day time brightness?

#2 Eddgie

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 08:58 AM

Not "Daytime" brightness, but I have seen it before as early as 90 minutes before dusk when the sky was still quite bright.

If you know exactly were to look, it makes it much easier. I have it in the scopes field using Go-To before and seen it by looking though the Telrad (after it was centered by Go-To) and then sighting over the top of the Telrad. That is the only way I have be able to find it even 90 minutes before sunset. The sky is just to big and bright with nothing to guide you to it.

Binoculars too, but even here, if you lower the binoculars, it makes it very difficult to get your eye to that exact spot in the sky.

But about 90 minutes before sunset is the earliest I have seen it visually, but to be fair, I haven't looked for it earlier.

It is like Vega. I have found it quite a bit before sunset in the past, but only by using Go-To on the scope to get in the area (trying to align early). Once you know exactly where to look (or at least very close to where to look) you can see it with the unaided eye, but finding it is so difficult!

#3 siriusandthepup

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 09:02 AM

It's hard to lock onto Jupiter or Venus in an empty daylight sky. What most observers aren't aware of is that with a reference point (I use the Moon), spotting Jupiter or Venus in a bright daytime sky is fairly easy without optical aid.

Try and estimate where the Moon will be with respects to the target planet during the daytime and then jump off from the Moon to find your target. Remember that the Moon travels approximately 12 deg. per 24 hours for your positional estimates.

Once you get used to doing this, you will find that you will be seeing the bright planets frequently in the daylight skies.

Have fun!

#4 REC

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 09:38 AM

I believe it's going to be very close to the moon on 12/25, so might be able to see it with bino's first and then maybe get it in a scope?

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#5 BrooksObs

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 09:48 AM

It's hard to lock onto Jupiter or Venus in an empty daylight sky. What most observers aren't aware of is that with a reference point (I use the Moon), spotting Jupiter or Venus in a bright daytime sky is fairly easy without optical aid.


Let me point out that using the "trick" of employing the occasional nearness of the moon to some star or planet to spot them in the bright daytime sky is really more than just the simple act of having something large and obvious as a locating guide.

A great misconception among observers is that when looking off into a clear blue sky the eye automatically goes to an infinity focus. In fact, it does not. Your focus actually wanders back and forth trying to find something to focus upon. This is why you can sometimes spend several minutes looking in just about the right spot trying to find Venus in the daytime without success. However, when it suddenly does pop into view it seems to become very easy to see and you wonder how you could have missed it. In fact, only when the eye's focus happens to be very near or at infinity as it passes over a bright planet, or star, in the daytime sky will you notice it (unless the object is VERY bright). That the nearby presence of the moon is offering the eyes a well defined focusing point, allowing the eyes to be at infinity focus when looking for the planet or star is what is making it easier to spot.

Years ago I conducted a long series of visual experiments addressing the visibility of Mercury in the bright daytime sky with limited optical aid and found when it was anywhere near the margins of visibility it could be situated right in the middle of the FOV of my large binoculars and yet totally escape detection for some minutes, even though it became relatively easy to see once actually spotted.

BrooksObs

#6 Rachal

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 09:56 AM

Thanks for the input fellows. I've always found Venus easy in 'broad daylight' once I knew where to look. Many years ago(40+) while in H.S., I enthusiastically attempted to show one of my classmates, but he just didn't share my interest. :( I thought that maybe getting a couple of paper towel tubes, painting the inside of each flat black, and using them as 1X binoculars might enhance the liklihood of seeing Jupiter in the middle of the day, once it's position has been determined with binoculars.

I'm sure if I look for Jupiter around 4:30 this evening, I should have no problem locating it with binoculars since I know where it rises. Maybe I'll try the cardboard tube binocular.

#7 Rachal

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 10:11 AM

It's hard to lock onto Jupiter or Venus in an empty daylight sky. What most observers aren't aware of is that with a reference point (I use the Moon), spotting Jupiter or Venus in a bright daytime sky is fairly easy without optical aid.


Let me point out that using the "trick" of employing the occasional nearness of the moon to some star or planet to spot them in the bright daytime sky is really more than just the simple act of having something large and obvious as a locating guide.

A great misconception among observers is that when looking off into a clear blue sky the eye automatically goes to an infinity focus. In fact, it does not. Your focus actually wanders back and forth trying to find something to focus upon. This is why you can sometimes spend several minutes looking in just about the right spot trying to find Venus in the daytime without success. However, when it suddenly does pop into view it seems to become very easy to see and you wonder how you could have missed it. In fact, only when the eye's focus happens to be very near or at infinity as it passes over a bright planet, or star, in the daytime sky will you notice it (unless the object is VERY bright). That the nearby presence of the moon is offering the eyes a well defined focusing point, allowing the eyes to be at infinity focus when looking for the planet or star is what is making it easier to spot.

Years ago I conducted a long series of visual experiments addressing the visibility of Mercury in the bright daytime sky with limited optical aid and found when it was anywhere near the margins of visibility it could be situated right in the middle of the FOV of my large binoculars and yet totally escape detection for some minutes, even though it became relatively easy to see once actually spotted.

BrooksObs

Good information. I seem to recall reading something about fighter pilots from years ago having to be trained to focus at infinity.

#8 Rachal

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 06:01 PM

I found Jupiter this evening(1-3-13) around 4:30 with my binoculars and then was able to detect it with unaided eyes. Sunset was around 5:20. Jupiter was at the limit of visibility for me and would pop in and out of view. I tried using the paper towel tube binocular to see if it would help, but I can not honestly say it did. By 4:45 Jupiter was somewhat easier to see.

#9 JasonBurry

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Posted 04 January 2013 - 10:24 AM

I've seen this a time or two myself, and much more commonly with Venus.

One can also observe Jupiter's moons naked eye (after dark, LOL), if one blocks Jupiter with a chimney or telephone pole.

There is something magical about the telescopic view of a planet in a blue early twilight sky, to boot!

J

#10 Rutilus

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Posted 04 January 2013 - 02:47 PM

This is a drawing I made of Jupiter a couple of years ago at 2 o'clock in the afternoon. I recal using my 3 inch f/16 refractor.

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