.... back yard astronomer ================= Don't forget to look at the moon often. Its a play ground of fun if you throttle up the magnification!
Orion xx14g Dob CPC 1100 w/Skywatcher 80ED piggybacked Coronado PST TMB 92L refractor AT Voyager mount Nexstar 6/8 mount Denk Big Easy binoviewers Oodles of eyepieces and other optical gadgets Past scopes Meade 8" reflector and 8" SCT
Ken Fiscus Stargazing since 1980 Now observing from a green zone. Z12 on custom mount, Atomic EQ platform, 100% flocked, OMI primary, Astrocrumb filter slide with O-III, NPB, Skyglow filters. Focuser & spider rotated 45 degrees, new springs & Bob's Knobs, Telrad & 9x50 straight finder 35 & 24 Pans, TV 13,7,5 T6s Custom Orion XT10 with piggyback XT4.5 Round Table EQ Platform
the very source and font of day is dashed with isles of wandering night--Tennyson
Quote:Saw Ison for the first time this morning in 20 inch Dob. It was very dim and took me longer than I expected to find. I had no luck with 11 inch Dob on three previous attempts. It is hard for me to imagine this comet making it to naked eye visibility.
Small scope enthusiast. Large scope aficionado
Meade LX850 12" C 8SE Meade ETX 90
Quote:Can someone please describe how to find ISON
Quote:I observed these three comets between moonset and twilight on the morning of October 15. It was 23 degrees F, but felt a lot colder. Limiting magnitude was 6.8-6.9 overhead, but there was a slight milky look lower on the horizon, and patches of river fog sometimes drifted by down at ISON's altitude. The zodiacal light was very bright just before the start of astronomical twilight.
I went for C/2013 R1 (Lovejoy) first, as it was in a more transparent area of the sky. It was a quick and easy starhop from Delta Monocerotis, and obvious in my 10" Dob at all powers. Lovejoy seemed a bit less condensed (DC=3 with a very faint stellar nucleus) than it did 10 days ago. There was a parabolic inner coma about 1.5' across, brighter on the edges and spreading into a short, broad fan in PA~300. This was surrounded by a large, diffuse halo that was round and about 5' in diameter as seen through the 10" Dob. I estimated Lovejoy's magnitude at 10.0.
I also managed to see Lovejoy through 10x42 binoculars. It was just a very faint hazy spot perhaps 9' in diameter. With binoculars, I estimated the magnitude as 9.0.
Comet 2P/Encke has also changed since my last observation. It has gotten quite a bit brighter and a little more condensed. Encke was quite easy in 10x42 binoculars, appearing as a round little blob about 10' in diameter with soft edges and a slightly brighter center. I estimated its magnitude as 8.1.
In the 10" Dob at 47x, Encke showed a small central condensation near the western edge of a slightly lopsided coma. Several faint jets curved out to form a fan to the east, including a central spine about 7' long in PA~80. The longer I looked, the more prominent the jets appeared against the faint glow of the coma.
Once again, I saved C/2012 S1 (ISON) for last. After a starhop from Mars, I found the comet in a sparse telescopic star field. The comet was near the center of a misshapen pentagon of 10th-magnitude stars. ISON has grown and brightened in the past 10 days, and this morning I was able to see a stellar nucleus for the first time. At 47x, I estimated the coma diameter as 4' and the tail length as 10' centered in PA 290. Coma magnitude was 10.0. At 165x, the tail was brighter along the central spine and on its southern edge. I was not able to see ISON in binoculars.
I sketched all 3 comets (Encke very roughly), but I probably won't get them posted to my website for a week or so due to work and vacation.
Quote: Chiloquin, OR is showing as been in the green zone, borderline in the black zone. What color zone are you in?Im trying to gauge what size optics are able to see these comets based on color zones. This could be why some can see these objects in 70mm binoculars, and some can barely see them in 10" scopes.23deg seems very cold to me. Ive observed in colder weather but have been ready for it.
Quote:Quote: Chiloquin, OR is showing as been in the green zone, borderline in the black zone. What color zone are you in?Im trying to gauge what size optics are able to see these comets based on color zones. This could be why some can see these objects in 70mm binoculars, and some can barely see them in 10" scopes.23deg seems very cold to me. Ive observed in colder weather but have been ready for it. Ralph,I'd consider my yard to be in the lighter blue (Bortle 3)zone on the ClearDarkSky Light Pollution Map. Near the horizon, it is more like Bortle 4, but the high altitude and usually dry air make it pretty good overall. I'm imagining trying to view ISON in early December when it is 0 degrees with two feet of snow on the ground. Not a given, but certainly possible here. Or it could just be cloudy for weeks on end. Wes StoneChiloquin, ORhttp://skytour.homestead.com
Brian S. Johnson
All Terrain Z10 http://tinyurl.com/ouxfsyu with refigured primary, 63mm Protostar secondary.
Quote:How do you update stellarium for comets?