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The Classic Moon

beginner classic moon refractor
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#176 AllanDystrup

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Posted 15 October 2020 - 02:28 AM

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22-24 Day MOON
Daytime view of Orientale Basin

     

     

     Here's a more detailed identification of the main features around the Orientale Basin, as viewable here from Earth. I've used a rather harsh increase in contrast to bring out the details more clearly for closer inspection, so please bear with that...

     

22DY Moon 2020-10-09 2x Orientale daytime.jpg

22DY Moon 2020-10-09 4x Orientale daytime.jpg

*click*

     

     The first basin ring #1: the Inner Rook Mts. can be seen as a range of bright mountain peaks bordering Mare Orientale towards the E, and it can be faintly traced right at the limb in the far distance beyond the Mare.

 

     Outside ring #1 is seen the long lava-filled trench Lacus Veris, enclosed by basin ring #2: the Outer Rook Mts. This ring can be traced from the crater pair Petit and Nicholson at the S end, up along the E shore of Lake Veris, and then seen clearly in ragged profile at the lunar limb NW of the Orientale basin.

 

     The outer ring #3: the Cordillera Mts. can be followed from the crater pair Wright and Shaler at the S end, up N past Krasnov and Eichstädt, enclosing the trench with Lacus Autumnis, before bending W past the crater Schlüter A. The Cordilleras is an up-warped scarp facing away from us, so there are no dramatic peaks or mountain ranges seen in profile here...

 

     -- Allan


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#177 AllanDystrup

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Posted 30 October 2020 - 07:45 AM

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The Orientale Basin.

(Geology)

     

     

     It has been two weeks with typical autumn weather here in Scandinavia, i.e. a series of low pressures dragging in warm- and cold fronts from the Atlantic with mostly overcast and rainy days and nights. So, let me return to my latest observing session of the 22-day Moon on October 09 at 08:30 AM. The observation was done in broad daylight with the moon up at a good 51° altitude and with a significant libration of -7° exposing the eastern part of the large multiring Mare Orientale basin.

 

Orientale 01.jpg
Orientale 02.jpg
*click*

     

     

     The Orientale Basin rings can be identified on my image, with the Cordillera Mts. from Wright and Shaler to Krasnov, up past Eichstadt, Lacus Autumni and past Schlüter; Then the Outer Rook Mts., from Nicholson and Petit, up past and enclosing Lacus Veris; And finally, the Inner Rook Mts., seen in profile on the far (western) side of Lacus Veris  stretching up past and enclosing Kopff and Maunder at the northern end. Interestingly, I can also identify as a thin white line the innermost (unnamed) ring, right at the edge of Mare Orientale where the mare basalt borders on the basin ejecta. Even more interesting is the “Mare Pacificus” seen at the S end of Orientale, enclosed by the Outer Rook Mtn. range. This formation is actually not mare lava but rather part of a pyroclastic ring of fire fountain ash deposits from a V-vent (Pacificus V1) in the Outer Rooks at the center of the ash ring. Here’s a LROC image of the formation:

 

Orientale 03.png

 

          

     The highland region between Oceanus Procellarum and the Orientale Basin shows several ancient eroded basins and large craters, such as the Pre-Nectarian (~4.4 Byr) 2-ringed Grimaldi Basin and the Darwin and Lamarck walled plains,  plus the Nectarian (3.9 Byr) Byrgius and Rocca craters. These old features have to a large degree been filled in by ejecta from the giant lower Imbrian Orientale Basin impact (~3.85 Byr), but with some effort they can still be traced.

     

     The old highland crust has since been peppered by upper Imbrian (~3.5 Byr) and young (~3-1.5 Byr) Eratosthenian impacts, and some of the excavations (Grimaldi, Crüger and the unnamed crater N of Lacus Aestatis) were lava filled in the late upper Imbrian and the Eratosthenian Epochs. A prominent feature on the photo is the 330 km long rille in the Orientale ejecta carpet running from N of Byrgius, across the ‘De Vico  A’ crater, then up north  E of ‘Crüger A’ and Sirsalis out to Oceanus Procellarum. The Sirsalis Rille is obviously younger than the lower Imbrian Orientale Basin ejecta (< 3.85 Byr), but older than the Eratosthenian craters (>3 Byr) positioned on top of it (Sirsalis J and F). The Sirsalis Rille was thus formed in late Imbrium by magma rising as a sheet from the mantle, up through the crust along a long (sic!) crack, radial to Oceanus Procellarum (the fracture was probably created by the ancient Gargantuum impact). The rising magma pushed aside the crust, but solidified before it could erupt onto the surface, leaving the long sunken rille over a solidified buried magma ribbon (known in geology as a 'graben' over a ’dyke’) which can be detected today as a strong magnetic anomaly.

 

     -- Allan


Edited by AllanDystrup, 31 October 2020 - 03:15 AM.

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#178 John_Moore

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Posted 30 October 2020 - 08:59 AM

As always, Allan, wonderful description. 'Mare Pacificus'?, stood out (below, from Clementine)

 

John Moore

 

Mare Pacificus

Edited by John_Moore, 30 October 2020 - 09:01 AM.

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#179 AllanDystrup

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Posted 09 November 2020 - 01:58 AM

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The Last Quarter Moon

    
     It's an early morning here in the start of November (2020-11-08, 03:30) and I'm out in my sub/urban transition backyard (SQM 19.3, NELM 5.7) with my small 4" F/6.4 refractor to observe the last quarter Moon. The 22-day moon is 55% illuminated, hanging up at 51° altitude in Cancer, the temperature is a cool 5°C with 93% humidity and the dew point is close at my heels at 4°C. The transparency is negatively affected by the high humidity resulting in a faint high-altitude haze with intermittent drifting alto-cumulus clouds. The seeing is OK tonight, calm and just above medium. 

 

     This early morning will be "second light" for my new IMX183 2.4μm pix 20MP camera, an upgrade from my ICX445 3.752.4μm pix 1.3MP. “First light” was 5 days ago in worse conditions (more haze and wind), but I had a good observation never the less, and the new camera tested out well on my small refractor. I really like the option of using it with good resolution both natively at prime focus as well as at 2x Barlow, and I love the flexibility of easily scaling the field of view by adjusting the region of interest from a whopping 5496x3672 down to 800x600!

 

     Tonight, I’ll use my 4" at f/12.8 for catching the full last-quarter moon at ROI 4120x3672, with zoom-in, first at 1920x1200 (S. Pole region) and then close-ups at 800x600 (Tycho-Clavius, E. Nubium, Copernicus areas). Here are a couple of my observations, starting with the full view of the last quarter moon. This photo was created from a 15s capture using 2.3ms exposure with 190 gain for histogram ~75%. 25% of the recorded frames were then stacked and the resulting image was adjusted in tone and sharpness.

     To maintain resolution across the entire dynamic range of the full lunar surface I ended up with a rather dark version of the Moon, but with lots of details as can be studied in the zoomed-in version: from the sun-facing Orientale, Gamma Reiner and Aristarchus past Copernicus with the Hortensius domes, and down to the Straight Wall with the nearby Birt Rille (including the volcanic vent with DMD) close to the terminator. Not bad I’d say, on an only so-so day (night).

 

03_13_45_lapl4_ap2411_conv_AI-SMALL.jpg
 

*** Click here for large Zoom/Pan-able image***

 

     I invite any and all suggestions for detail-preserving post-processing of wide field lunar images (i.e. with a large range in luminance spanning from broad sunlight to the dark terminator region). I find it difficult to maintain full resolution across the entire wide field while at the same time presenting a “natural looking” rendering in tone and luminance. I hope there’s a learning curve that I can climb here...

 

     -- Allan


Edited by AllanDystrup, 09 November 2020 - 05:38 AM.

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#180 AllanDystrup

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Posted 09 November 2020 - 06:16 AM

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The Last Quarter Moon -- SW region

     

     
     Here’s the SW region of the southern cratered highlands, caught at last quarter Moon during the same observation as described in my previous post. I’ve reduced the ROI to a medium of 1920x1200, taking a 30sec recording at 4ms exposure, using gain 165 for 75% histogram. The image is the result of 30% AS!3 stacking with subsequent adjustment of tone and sharpness for max detail.

     

     The 19km Ø young Copernican crater ‘Byrgius A’ is prominent at the NW corner of the photo, as are the triangle of large craters at the center: Schickard-Schiller-Hainzel, and indeed the “Ace of Diamonds” towards the SE formed by Tycho-Longomontanus-Maginus-Clavius.

     

     Some long rilles can be seen, including the 3 Hippalus Rilles at the SE end of Humorum and the long Hesiodus Rille from Capuanus up  to Pitatus. Many interesting details can be studied in the crater walls and floors, where craterlets down to 2-3km Ø can be glimpsed:

 

03_24_57_lapl5_ap2787_conv_AI_S.jpg

*** Click for Zoom/Pan-able Image***

 

     -- Allan

 


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#181 John_Moore

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Posted 09 November 2020 - 08:11 AM

Looks like investment in your new camera, Allan, was worth it, as the images you posted are very nice in detail (especially the original sizes). You'll probably have to play around with various settings in the new camera (and I presume with the accompanying software that most companies now include with them), however, for now, click-on wink.gif

 

John



#182 AllanDystrup

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Posted 10 November 2020 - 06:09 AM

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     Yes indeed, John -- my new camera allows both a bit more resolution as well as larger FOV at prime focus, with flexible choice of zoom-in via region-of-interest. As you mention, there will be no hard rules for best post-processing as it depends on telescope aperture and focal length, image scale, exposure settings, seeing &c and so on... So yes, playing around will be required, but hey! -- that's part of the fun of this hobby grin.gif 

     

The Last Quarter Moon – Ancient Thebit

     

     

     Closing this observation, here’s a couple of close-up images captured with a smaller region of interest (800 x 600px).

     

     The first image shows the E Nubium area, with -- among other features -- the Birt Rille (volcanic pit with lava channel) and the Straight Wall (linear fault) in the large 200Km Ø lava-drowned “Ancient Thebit” crater.

 

     Also prominent in this area is the even larger 235km Ø Deslandres walled plain, with a roughly textured crater floor, filled by impact ejecta and pitted by the large Hell crater plus several clusters and chains of small secondary craters.

    

Last Quarter Moon-- E Nubium.png
*** Click for larger image *** 

     

     -- Allan


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#183 AllanDystrup

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Posted 11 November 2020 - 08:41 AM

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Tycho and Longomontanus

     

     

Last Quarter Moon - Longomontanus.jpg
 

*** Click for larger image ***

 

     Longomontanus is seen to have a relatively smooth crater floor (fluidized Orientale ejecta?) 
and two large clusters of cratering impacts, one at the NW and  the other at the SE crater rims
(probably secondaries from Orientale) - but apart from that, "Longo" is rather unremarkable...    

     

     

     In medieval times, astronomy was primarily what we would today refer to as solar system positional astrometry, -- it was taught as a branch of mathematics in monasteries, and used as a tool for calendar planning and astrology.

     

     After Tycho Brahe’s ground breaking observational work (described here), a separate chair in Astronomy was set-up in Denmark at the University of Copenhagen (1605), and one of Tycho’s pupils: Christian Sørensen Lomborg, was granted the first astronomy professorship in Denmark. (the surname ‘Lomborg’ indicates the place he was born, and was translated to Latin as Long Mountain = Longomontanus). Longomontanus was the son of a low-rank farmer, but he had an outstanding talent for mathematics, especially calculation of and use of logarithmic tables (before the logarithmic formulae were properly formulated), so - typical for Tycho - he employed Longomontanus as a member of his observatory staff.

     

     Longomontanus’ greatest contributions to astronomy were writing the university textbook “Astronomia Danica” and establishing the new Danish Observatory at the Round Tower in central Copenhagen, after Tycho disbanded his own observatory at the island of Hven and finally left the country for Pragh in 1598, following disputes with the Danish king Christian IV.

 

Longomontanus - Round Tower.jpg

 

     The textbook Astronomia Danica contains chapters on spherical astronomy, astronomical instruments and observation methods, calculations and tables (all subjects he learned from Tycho). The textbook was used widely over most of Europe in the following half century, and the Round Tower is still in use today as the oldest functioning observatory in Europe, -- but now for public astronomical outreach events. The instruments of Longomontanus (sextant, azimuthal quadrant etc.) have of course been substituted by a modern telescope (a 150mm refractor from 1929). Apart from preserving the Tycho Brahe legacy, Longomontanus was a conservative mind who was not prepared to think out of the box with regards to new instruments (telescopes) or Keplerian cosmology, so maybe it's fitting that his name was attached to the large but in other ways rather anonymous crater just SW of Tycho (though it would have fitted better to what is now known as Schiller...).

 

     -- Allan

 


Edited by AllanDystrup, 11 November 2020 - 08:43 AM.

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#184 AllanDystrup

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Posted 20 November 2020 - 09:22 AM

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Copernicus

     

     

     The autumn weather here in Denmark the past couple of weeks has been abysmally abominable with windy, overcast and rainy days and nights. Not a chance for even a quick grab-&-go view of the universe... So, here’s instead a final observation from the latest night, when I was able to go out and out study the moon, -- specifically the area around the magnificent Copernicus crater.

     

     

         The image below shows the arc of Nectarian Epoch lunar crust, uplifted by the Imbrium Basin impact, and settled as the rugged massifs of the Carpathian and Apennine Mountain ranges. From the same event, Imbrium impact melt and crushed crust were ejected and deposited radially in large swaths of hilly, hummocky terrain, intermixed with regions of underlying faulted Nectarian bedrock; Examples of such Lower Imbrian ejecta deposits are seen W of Copernicus and to the S and E of Reinhold    

     

     Later, the impact basin and its surroundings with Lower Imbrian craters like Stadius, were partly covered by lava flows in Upper Imbrium, and some regions (as can be seen SE of Copernicus) were further coated by fire-fountain pyroclastic dark mantle material (DMD: ash with small glass beads) or adorned with domes from slowly erupting lava vents over small near-surface magma chambers (examples N of Hortensius crater).
    
     Recently, in the Eratosthenian and following Copernican Epochs, large impacts formed terraced craters like Eratosthenes and Copernicus, the youngest with rays of bright pulverized ejecta and chains of secondary craters.

     

     So all-in-all, this is a geologically quite interesting area of the lunar surface. The weather conditions were not the best though, with a transparency varying  from 2-4/7 and getting worse  as the observation progressed. The image below was taken through a thickening layer of high clouds, so the result is somewhat softer than it otherwise could have been...

     

Last Quarter Moon - Copernicus 01.jpg

*** Click for Zoom-In image ***

 

Last Quarter Moon - Copernicus 02.jpg

 

     -- Allan

 

 

 

     


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#185 AllanDystrup

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Posted 30 November 2020 - 08:22 AM

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12 Day moon -- mares and rays

     

     

     It's November 26. 2020, 1h. past midnight. The temperature is a cool 4dg C, and the humidity is 87% with the dewpoint nearby at 2dgC. The 12-day 90% waxing gibbous moon is hanging low at 17dg altitude in Pisces, surrounded by a weak halo of frosty haze, and the seeing is only so-so medium, so I really ought to be in my bed instead of out in my suburban backyard, -- but it has been overcast the past three weeks, so here I stand, pointing at the moon with my 4" refractor while frost is starting to paint ice flowers on my dew shield.

 

12DY Moon BW.jpg

*** Click to zoom-in ***

 

     

     The almost full moon is a good time to enjoy the vast seas of mare lava with their crisscrossing rays from lunar impacts: Tycho and Copernicus of course, but also the smaller butterfly "splashes" from Thales in the NE past Proclus at Crisium and down to Stevinus-Furnerius towards the SE. Plus many other interesting bright-spot craterlets and rays, which all show up well if I invert the image:

 

12DY Moon INV.jpg
*** Click to zoom-in ***

 

     -- Allan


Edited by AllanDystrup, 30 November 2020 - 08:24 AM.

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