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Astrophotography and Sketching >> Sketching

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Special Ed
Postmaster
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Reged: 05/18/03

Loc: Greenbrier Co., WV 38N, 80W
SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014
      #6334683 - 01/25/14 12:10 PM Attachment (69 downloads)

Hi Everyone,

I got a look at the supernova in Messier 82 early this AM under somewhat trying conditions. We had clear skies forecast in front of an incoming snowfall but the reality was high clouds and haze coming and going throughout the session. At times I could only see the two pointer stars of the Big Dipper. I never could see any of the Little Dipper except for Polaris and it would come and go.

On top of that, my scope's alignment is off but because it was so cold (3°F/-16°C) I didn't want to spend the time finding new calibration stars. I thought, well I'll just point the scope manually and use the 9x50 finder scope to locate M81/M82. Not so easy when the transparency keeps tanking. Also, it's hard to point a big CAT without a telrad.

Long story short, after an hour I located M81 in the finderscope during a period of better transparency and easily hopped from there to M82 using my widest field eyepiece (a 2 inch 52mm yielding 75x and an fov of ~48 arcmins).

At this point I was still warm and was warmed even more by the sight of the supernova. I could see it at 75x with direct vision (14 inches of aperture didn't hurt either) and comparing it to a nearby mag 11.2 star (using an AAVSO chart) estimated the SN at ~11.0 magnitude. It didn't look brighter than the 11.2 star but against the background nebulosity of the gx appeared more intense and more of a pinpoint, hence the higher estimate.

I gaped at the SN for 20 or 30 minutes and then cranked up the scope a bit to 98x to make the sketch. By then clear patches were arriving less frequently and staying for a shorter period of time. Because of the transparency issue I was having trouble focusing so I centered that reddish star to the north of M82 that Jason has in his sketch, focused on it, and returned to M82 and the SN. I did not see any color in the SN.

Conditions prevented me from seeing much detail in M82 except for the dark lane but it was enought to see the supernova. It must really be a sight for any denizens of that galaxy or its neighbor.

By now I had been out for 3 hours and was getting cold--also the clouds were getting serious so I battened down the observatory and came in. It started snowing about 3 hours later and still is.

The sketch was done on white paper with 2B and HB pencils, a stump, and kneaded eraser and then inverted. I also flipped it for the correct view and tweaked the levels.

When I was sketching at the eyepiece I was wearing cotton gloves withe silk inserts. I also had a chemical handwarmer for an extra shot of heat. After I came in I fine tuned things a little bit. As I look at it now, the 12th mag stars are a little brighter than they should be. This cold weather sketching is hard--hats off to all who are doing it--but it's worth it to get a look at this new super star.

Edited by Special Ed (01/26/14 08:40 AM)


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Chopin
Canis Insanus
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Reged: 02/03/05

Loc: In the doghouse.
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: Special Ed]
      #6334919 - 01/25/14 01:43 PM

Michael, I enjoyed reading your post from front to back. I can feel the sense of frustration with trying to point and find using 4000mm of fl. Perseverance certainly payed off for you. This is a fantastic illustration despite the haze and intermittent cloud cover. I concur completely with your magnitude assessment. Maybe you'll get some better transparency to verify colors. I'm hoping to get the same chance in the next few days.

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frank5817
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Reged: 06/13/06

Loc: Illinois
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: Chopin]
      #6335057 - 01/25/14 03:02 PM

Michael,

A real top notch sketch and report. Just what we always get in your sketching presentations.
Isn't it great to get out to see these spectacular stellar explosions.

You prepare for the cold more sensibly than I do.

Frank


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kenrenard
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/13/12

Loc: Dunmore, PA
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: frank5817]
      #6335154 - 01/25/14 03:52 PM

Michael,
You worked for this one. Congratulations on getting a view of the supernova. I am hoping to catch it if the weather ever clears.

Ken


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Tommy5
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 03/28/04

Loc: Chicagoland
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: kenrenard]
      #6335281 - 01/25/14 05:10 PM

Great sketch of this celestial event , perhaps we will learn more supernovas from this, thanks again for posting and stay warm.

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Andrev
Post Laureate
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Reged: 02/08/11

Loc: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: Tommy5]
      #6335318 - 01/25/14 05:23 PM

Really nice sketch.

Andre


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Uwe Pilz
scholastic sledgehammer


Reged: 05/16/08

Loc: Leipzig, Germany
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: Andrev]
      #6335931 - 01/26/14 01:50 AM

Nice again to see an observation. Totally clouded here.

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wiruna
member


Reged: 08/11/06

Loc: Sydney, Australia
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: Uwe Pilz]
      #6336136 - 01/26/14 07:19 AM

Nice sketch, but I think M82 is a bit further than 11.5 ly away! (as stated in your notes)
Geoff


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Chopin
Canis Insanus
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Reged: 02/03/05

Loc: In the doghouse.
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: wiruna]
      #6336190 - 01/26/14 08:43 AM

Quote:

Nice sketch, but I think M82 is a bit further than 11.5 ly away! (as stated in your notes)
Geoff




I've done this before...numerous times. I'm guessing Michael forgot the "M". Tell us you just forgot the "M", right Michael?!?


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Special Ed
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Reged: 05/18/03

Loc: Greenbrier Co., WV 38N, 80W
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: wiruna]
      #6336214 - 01/26/14 09:04 AM

Thanks, everyone! These tough sessions are just that much sweeter when it's all over with and you can feel your fingers again. And this is not an event to miss if at all possible.

@Frank--my wife doesn't think the word "sensible" should be used to describe anything any of us have been doing out there (except to come back inside).

The experts are now saying that the SN will peak at an mV of 10.5 on Feb. 2nd. Look here for details.

Quote:

Nice sketch, but I think M82 is a bit further than 11.5 ly away! (as stated in your notes)
Geoff




Yikes! Left out a few zeros, didn't I? I guess I still hadn't recovered from -16°C when I typed that. Fixed now--thanks for pointing it out, Geoff, and Happy Australia Day.


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frank5817
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Reged: 06/13/06

Loc: Illinois
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: Special Ed]
      #6337551 - 01/26/14 08:44 PM

Michael,

You may remember the supernova in M81 back in the Spring of 1993. That one was a type II but about the same brightness as the one in M82 now. I'd like to see this one(2014J) at about 10th magnitude next week and I know you would too under pristine conditions.

Frank


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Special Ed
Postmaster
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Reged: 05/18/03

Loc: Greenbrier Co., WV 38N, 80W
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: frank5817]
      #6337753 - 01/26/14 10:27 PM

Frank,
I missed the one in 1993 but have seen many references to it since 2014J appeared. The estimate I read of a peak magnitude of 10.5 by Feb. 2nd seems to have been superceded by reality. Dave Mitsky reported in the DSO Observing forum that Rochester Astronomy was reporting a visual mag of 10.0 on their website. It will be easy to compare the SN to that 10th magnitude star to the SW (if the sky is clear). Fingers are crossed.


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niteskystargazer
Carpal Tunnel
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Reged: 10/05/09

Loc: 41-43'-28" N 87-42'-39" W
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: Special Ed]
      #6339201 - 01/27/14 04:57 PM

Michael,

Nice sketch of SN 2014J on Jan. 25th .

CS,KLU,

,

Tom


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Erik Bakker
Post Laureate
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Reged: 08/10/06

Loc: The Netherlands, Europe
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: Special Ed]
      #6341623 - 01/28/14 06:40 PM

Michael,

Tonight I observed the nova in M82 for the first time and under good conditions with my little C5. What a beautiful sight! You sketched it so well, I had a very similar view at 70x. Never thought it would be that easy and beautiful.


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Aquarellia
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/27/12

Loc: Provence, France
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: Erik Bakker]
      #6343017 - 01/29/14 12:27 PM

Hello

What a nice and interesting post Michael! Another exciting observation after sun’s spot and prom’s, comets, the nova del, Geminid’s shower… a rich season !
I spend a lot of time during 4 nights looking at this superb Supernova. I made sketches and mag. Estimations.
Our own story is here under, in French, sorry but sketches are so universal…

Thanks a lot Michael to share your observation!

Edited by Aquarellia (01/29/14 12:28 PM)


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Special Ed
Postmaster
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Reged: 05/18/03

Loc: Greenbrier Co., WV 38N, 80W
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: Aquarellia]
      #6344231 - 01/29/14 10:33 PM

Thanks, Tom.

Erik, thanks also and glad you got to see this object for yourself.

Michel, thanks also to you. It has been a busy time with lots to see and marvel at, hasn't it? I went to your website to see your drawings of the SN--very nice! I'm impressed that you were able to get so many observations done. Am I correct that your last estimate was 10.9? BTW, great sketch of AR 1967. AR 1944 returns?


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Aquarellia
professor emeritus


Reged: 10/27/12

Loc: Provence, France
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: Special Ed]
      #6344402 - 01/30/14 12:41 AM

Hi Michael,
You know, here in Provence we can have a very high number of clear sky, it´s why we are living here ! Time for cloudynights is rare,... Anyway my estimations are only those with the blue cross (DMIB)
my last estimation of the SN was 10.5 made Jan 27.
Yes the sunspot AR1967 is our old fellow AR1944.
Thank you for your return !

Edited by Aquarellia (01/30/14 12:44 AM)


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Andrev
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Reged: 02/08/11

Loc: Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: Aquarellia]
      #6344415 - 01/30/14 12:54 AM

I saw the SN tonight. Really beautiful sight.

Andre.


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kenrenard
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 12/13/12

Loc: Dunmore, PA
Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: Andrev]
      #6344579 - 01/30/14 06:42 AM

I finally got some clear skies and was able to view the Super Nova. I struggled a bit with the high winds but I saw the brightness very easily. It seems to have increased even more in brightness since your sketch. It seemed very close in magnitude to the star near it. I was very amazed all of the sketches are very accurate. With below zero wind chills and my hands and face freezing I retreated to the warm house.



Ken

Edited by kenrenard (01/30/14 06:47 AM)


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Andrev
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Reged: 02/08/11

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Re: SN 2014J Obs<>25 Jan. 2014 new [Re: kenrenard]
      #6344730 - 01/30/14 09:11 AM

I agree Ken, the brightness is very similar to the closest star.

Andre.


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