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Neptune (still searching) plus a late Saturn...

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#1 Kokatha man

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Posted 12 September 2017 - 07:56 PM

Hi all: a "late" Saturn inasmuch as Saturn had sunk to 45° by the time we imaged it. (yes, I know - I can hear you Northern Hemisphere folks murmuring "you poor fella!" lol.gif )

 

That was about 3.5 hours after Sunset so I still hope to test the latest alterations to the 18" (nearly all mount-related) while Saturn is nice & high shortly after dark...I mentioned elsewhere it is kept in the back of the car till we get an imaging opportunity where we can employ it... fingerscrossed.gif

 

Saturday night at Culburra near the Victoria border wasn't that opportunity: we went mainly hoping to advance our search for the large EQ spot on Neptune that does appear to have dissipated, stopping at this tiny place in the late afternoon.

 

It was not only very cold but possibly the wettest night we have imaged in - water was literally dripping off the camera etc cables within a couple of hours of commencing imaging: with only our onboard battery bank the small auxiliary battery was drained as we had to constantly hair-dry the corrector of dew throughout the night... frown.gif

 

Saturn surprised even though the seeing at that altitude left something to be desired: I had to process the rings separately & was not really happy with that but the disk seemed to display quite a wealth of activity, the dark spot being the most interesting to us as they have not seemed to be very prevalent this apparition - this one being most visible in the blue channel despite it being the poorest capture. I might post it later. (spot measurements on the image)

 

Neptune was frustrating. Last year we seemed to image bright spots constantly throughout the 2016 apparition & although our captures of the large EQ spot on 2 occasions as well as a couple of others since were satisfying, we are getting more misses than hits lately...

 

The animation below of 5 frames (reversing) does seem to "suggest" one spot just below the EQ in 2 frames but it is pretty vague to say the least: I measured it in the best of these 2 frames but it is nowhere near as substantial (or substantiated!) as the EQ one nor a couple of others we have picked up this year... frown.gif

 

I haven't been the best lately but we will keep on trying to get a more prolonged seeing opportunity to really put the 18" to the test on Saturn (hopefully before too late in that apparition) as well as continue targeting Neptune  - & hopefully Uranus as well. wink.gif

 

s2017-09-09_12-06_rgb-dpm-TILT@150%#6.png

 

2017-09-09_13-52_ir_dpm.png

 

2017-09-09-1352_5-dpm-Annot-WJmeasurement.png

 

n2017-09-09_13-02_ir_dpm.gif

 

 

 

 


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#2 Kokatha man

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Posted 12 September 2017 - 09:58 PM

Thanks for the "Likes" - here's a little looping animation of the feed from a different r-channel capture that night...I've just part-processed the first red that was 17 minutes earlier...with 30% of the frames (3066) at 70% quality wrt the best it's clearly better than the red I used, but the blues were all shockers except for the one in the r-g-b I posted! lol.gif

But although I did it purely on a whim exporting frames from AS!2 - & having to reduce the scale to 70% of capture scale to drop the gif from over a megabyte to just under 500k - it does give quite a reasonable idea of what the actual feed looked like for this capture if you employ the screen-browser magnifier to bring it back up to about 100%. (ie, setting your s/magnifier to 150%)

Anyway, here it is remembering this was clearly better than the red I used for the image above...& you'll need to magnify it 150% for capture conditions - these are the best dozen frames but they do give a fairly reasonable idea of the feed for that take. wink.gif

Sat_114720_R_090917_r_FeedLoop.gif

Perhaps a much better idea (or worse! lol.gif ) is gained by the collimating star for Saturn & then Neptune...take your pick! wink.gif

Collimation-Neptune_123541_R_090917-&-Saturn_112816_R_090917.png
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#3 Kokatha man

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Posted 12 September 2017 - 09:59 PM

...& that blue we used with the dark spot best displayed - a very minimalist processing btw at capture scale. smile.gif

 

Q60Nm70_Sat_120806_B_090917@CapScale.png

 

 


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#4 Kokatha man

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Posted 12 September 2017 - 10:34 PM

Well - the dark spot I measured in the rgb is clearly NOT the spot I can see in the blue channel above!!!

I can see a dark spot in the first red capture (that of the loop feed in Post #2) that does correspond with the spot in the rgb in Post #1 as far as latitude...but that blue channel's spot is nowhere near as far North: I'll go through everything when I get the time but I'm either crazy...or half-crazy! lol.gif

I can see "something" in the blue above but nowhere near as pronounced as what appears to be a D.S. much closer to the EQ...& unless I can discern it in the relevant r &/or g it can only be noise or some other artefact...time to lie down methinks! wink.gif

#5 Kokatha man

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Posted 13 September 2017 - 04:23 AM

Ok - mystery solved.....or more accurately sanity restored - if only temporarily! lol.gif

 

It was the green channel where we could see the relevant dark spot in the unsharpened stack...here it is with a small amount of sharpening & curves & levels just to make it a tad clearer: I went through the whole rigmarole of putting the green channel through WinJupos & then overlaying it onto the rgb to see if it was one & the same.

 

It is - & locates it perfectly as one would expect with the green channel's mid-point UT having only a 1 second disparity with the rgb's mid-point: I am obsessive for sure but I really needed to work out what was going on...unfortunately my health has been playing up recently & it causes headaches & other things like concentration etc to waver. Hopefully I'll be on the mend soon! fingerscrossed.gif

 

I also measured the dark spot on the green channel & came up with very close coordinates to those I placed on the rgb in Post #1...near enough for a procedure that is always fraught with some inconsistencies. wink.gif

 

Apologies for misleading folks with that blue channel stuff: here's the green channel stack relatively unsharpened except for the curves & levels with the D.S. annotated & the image set as an insert into the image measured in WinJUPOS - onwards & upwards now hopefully! wink.gif

 

GreenChannelDarkSpotMeasurement.png



#6 Peter L.

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Posted 13 September 2017 - 07:00 AM

Amazing work as per usual!

 

Your inclusion of raw Saturn frames makes me extremely jealous, but yet re-assured all at the same time. Perhaps I am doing okay with capture and processing after all. I'm just not getting anything close to that kind of seeing...and shouldn't expect anything close in my location and altitude...

 

Two observations -- in your image, the northern hemisphere has a bluish tinge. My latest Saturn shows the same thing...although nowhere as clear. Because mine is not as clear, it looks even more pronounced. I've read that this is a phenomenon caused by Saturn's changing seasons, but haven't seen it quite as clear in captures before yours.

 

Second, your ring structure shows a little blue/purple, particularly in the Cassini division. In DP's videos, he instructs removing this. I've often wondered if that is the right thing to do. What is the truer image? Does taking it out remove artifacts or misrepresent? What is your opinion?

 

Thanks!


Edited by Peter L., 13 September 2017 - 06:59 PM.


#7 Kokatha man

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Posted 13 September 2017 - 07:02 PM

I'm sure you do know how to capture & process Peter!

 

Although 45° was getting low here it is a world of difference from your location - factor in any poorer seeing & you're really up against it. frown.gif

 

I deliberately included that little looping feed of the live-view because after careful consideration I did think it was reasonably representative of what that capture displayed even though it was the best dozen frames...& thought it might give people like you a gauge.

 

I've speculated that Saturn's tilt & Sun(light) angle must have some impact on the appearance of the planet...not sure whether I came up with that myself or read something associated somewhere beforehand to give me that idea..! lol.gif

 

Regardless, we've captured Saturn with a panoply of varying colours. wink.gif

 

A camera image is always a mediated image...the eyes in a different way in that no two people see colours exactly the same...& it's probable no 2 people will agree on what is the best approach! wink.gif

 

I like to adopt a slightly circumspect approach to lessen our tendency for pretty pictures as against recording what's there, but it is a vexed question: you'll note that in Post #1 that: <"I had to process the rings separately & was not really happy with that..."> & tbh I could have gone much further in the manner you describe as well as other areas, but thought "enough is enough!" on that score.

 

I don't like "drawing on Mars" either although there are ways to ameliorate certain phenomena that people may wish to follow that do not alter the basic data...people have to follow their own conscience there but I believe it best to adopt a minimalist approach as far as possible: along with appreciating that elevation & seeing are nearly always 2 "elephants in the room" there's always other "caveat emptors" to take into account when trying to compare images... wink.gif



#8 Az Frank

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Posted 13 September 2017 - 10:58 PM

Excellent results Darryl, wish I had to cope with a 45 degree Saturn...... nicely done  Darryl!


Edited by Az Frank, 14 September 2017 - 10:46 PM.


#9 Peter L.

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Posted 14 September 2017 - 10:01 AM

I like to adopt a slightly circumspect approach to lessen our tendency for pretty pictures as against recording what's there, but it is a vexed question: you'll note that in Post #1 that: <"I had to process the rings separately & was not really happy with that..."> & tbh I could have gone much further in the manner you describe as well as other areas, but thought "enough is enough!" on that score.

 

I don't like "drawing on Mars" either although there are ways to ameliorate certain phenomena that people may wish to follow that do not alter the basic data...people have to follow their own conscience there but I believe it best to adopt a minimalist approach as far as possible: along with appreciating that elevation & seeing are nearly always 2 "elephants in the room" there's always other "caveat emptors" to take into account when trying to compare images... wink.gif

Thanks for your thoughts on this. I tend to agree, but find myself struggling a bit when trying to pull yet another ounce of detail out of an image. When do sharpening algorithms go beyond revealing what's really there and start distorting the image to create new artifacts? Compound that by executing multiple passes of deconvolution and de-noising, and are you actually distorting the image vs. just revealing what's there? It's tough to figure out where the line should be set. I guess your right in that each person needs to figure that out for themselves. Most of us are just hobbyists, so if someone wants to create the prettiest picture they can, I guess it's their prerogative to do so as long as they don't try to pass it off as a scientifically accurate representation.



#10 stanislas-jean

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Posted 14 September 2017 - 11:01 AM

Frankly for saturn here in france near paris, comparing to a 127MM, still thinking better.

Now on neptune the dark eq band is needed, because there.

On uranus any picture published missed the darker pole is strange

May be facter of filter use. But I doubt strongly  of the real ability on the filter use results on the forum ccd issues

Stanislas -Jean



#11 Kokatha man

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Posted 14 September 2017 - 08:34 PM

Thanks Frank - "45°" - I know, I know! lol.gif

 

That's why I made the comments about you folks in the N. Hemisphere in my original posting here.....& to rub it in more (unintentionally!) a quick look at WinJupos tells me that Saturn is still at 74° a half hour after Sunset: I was really trying to say that to try & image Saturn for the best outcome we should've been out there a good 3 hours earlier - but don't worry, your time with this planet high will come! wink.gif

 

Peter, with your elevation (let alone other factors) it is only natural to try & "pull" out the most but it is fraught with risks; even here it is easy to get carried away with sharpening applications but these days I usually use Registax6 wavelets for the mono channels & USM in P/shop after the r-g-b combine as my only 2 sharpening applications.

 

The only deviation from that is where there is really good data & I WJ derotate where I will USM the individual rgb .tifs slightly more - & even again after these rgb's are derotated/combined.

 

I used to L-R deconvolution almost always in AstraImage but rarely do this nowadays for a couple of reasons; I switched from a single L-R application to one where the 3X drizzled .fits had 2 applications with a reduction in image size between each subsequent deconvolution, to my present USM substitution, sometimes using a similar approach to the double L-R means...

 

But I try to be acutely aware of the degree of sharpening & not go too far: a good gauge for me is that if I see something in the RAW stack that I'm certain is "real" my sharpening degrees will attempt to evince that in the finished outcome...sometimes that isn't as easy as it might sound but I think it best to always err on the side of caution...or in the above case not necessarily try to get all the parameters neatly conforming to what you expect.

 

The old "Gibbs Efffect" where you get a ringing artefact once you go too far with wavelets is always a good warning sign in R6 with the N.P. region showing quite ugly effects therein...

 

I find the rings can be particularly susceptible to seeing etc apropos the colouration & in this situation I was surprisedthat there was almost no indication of Encke but the disk revealed spots clearly...& in this instance just decided I wasn't interested in making those rings as "schmick" as one can with something that is easily isolated for a "custom job"..! lol.gif

 

Stan, over the last few years - but more so with our very recent survey of Neptune's globe we have noticed that the banding that you refer to is not always as marked at different longitudes: some of this is possible albedo variations & some the result of differing seeing etc conditions at the time of imaging - I agree that Neptune should reveal albedo variations in an image result where the conditions are reasonable, but unfortunately that is not always the case for this difficult planet!

 

In the 2nd & 3rd images in Post #1 (the single image as well as "Measurement of Neptune images") the dark "band" can be seen, although here it appears more like a general darkening of the Nthn. Hemisphere interrupted by the slightly higher albedo areas such as the presumed "bright spot" I measured. (which I first thought might have been remnants of the large EQ spot we first discovered on June 10th, but which I now think has dissipated)

 

Except for Karel's recent image I have never seen it as the fairly clear dark banding it presents itself there...but on further reflection I believe his image also displays some non-uniformity & conforms to what I've just said...with the drizzling & particular processing bringing out some of the strongest albedo variations at those longitudes: but just like those "hints" in Karel's image, even in our highest resolution outcomes that region is interrupted with albedo variations that are both "bright spots" or other meteorological phenomena...(possibly) more general cloud variations...& as we all know, the present-day professional understanding of Neptune's weather is still very poor.

 

We have no results for Uranus at all this apparition: Steve Fugardi's image does not reveal a dark pole although to my eyes there is a "hint" of the N.P. collar Pat & I have picked up numerous times over the last few years & which others have also captured from time to time...hopefully we get a chance to image Uranus but the weather here has been atrocious for imaging for most of the time unfortunately! frown.gif

 

EDIT: clarification & typos.


Edited by Kokatha man, 14 September 2017 - 09:47 PM.

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#12 stanislas-jean

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Posted 16 September 2017 - 03:31 AM

Darryl, it's not enough convincing for me.

Indeed, we met negative conditions as in first the seeing, but my feeling is not only.

 

For Neptune you known this, the albedo variations are delicate, not strong, difficult to reveal.

Personnally, I think the filter use remains the main factor and the apertures in game.

Roughly, visually we may have the red area data and imagers above the red area until 1µm wavelength.

I think also the typical sketch that I inserted on CN forum would be a logic target with a pole dark even on your field of obs. and probably lighter.

 

For Uranus: same for the pôle. On the jpn alpo site other documents show this.

Last 2016 opposition there was also lot of data showing that, but shared with and not with among the community.

 

Personnally, pôle not captured on Neptune but on Uranus currently.

However, the data status you provide remain well quoted through the star images, important point.

Sothat we are leaded to conclude, even the pôle is existing darker, for the imaging area of capture and apertures in game this would be delicate, difficult to show.

My opinion about.

Good skies, good hope.

Stanislas-Jean



#13 Kokatha man

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Posted 16 September 2017 - 09:51 PM

Stan, rather than struggle with language difficulties I'll presume that I understand the gist of your comments:

 

ie, despite seeing, aperture & the more delicate albedo variations on Neptune you hypothesize that there "could" be a clear/lighter polar area, as per your sketch you placed in Karel's recent Neptune thread.

 

StanNeptuneSketch.png

 

Here are 2 images of Neptune separated by almost 2 years - the first a South Polar projection from 18th September 2015: note that both maps were constructed from single capture stacks (ie, not derotated stacks!) 

 

n2015-09-18-1411.7-PolarMapSouthFIN.png

 

Here is another South Polar projection from 9th September 2017: (our most recent) 

 

2017-09-09_13-52_ir_dpm-PolarMap-South#2.png

 

Unfortunately I see nothing in these 2 images, & I have also looked at all our other data but have not found anything there to support the notion that there is a clearer/lighter region around the South Pole of Neptune.....& all our images display a darker region around the North Pole...

 

This agrees with some professional images & whilst I acknowledge that the bandwidths are different Pat & I have numerous images in both R & RG Longpass bandwidths that generally accord with each other...so whilst you may have a point (if I understand you correctly!) there is nothing we have captured to support this idea...

 

I hope I have understood you correctly - as for Uranus I will not comment upon the present situation because we have been unable to image it at present...

 

Regards, Darryl.

 

EDIT: I also include (possibly) the best image we captured on June 10th 2017 when we were the first to image the large EQ spot that later became the subject of a Keck release when it was imaged there: this night was amongst the best seeing conditions we have ever encountered as the appearance of this spot was not only quite clear in the unsharpened RAW stacks - but also Pat & I are certain we could see it in the live feed on the computer!

 

Further to this, we also picked the spot up in the R-channel capture...& as noted at the time the seeing was so good that a 3-digit alteration in the focus value from red to blue was very palpable for optimum focus of the blue channel...as this equates to only about a 12 micron shift in the focuser drawtube one can easily appreciate just how good the seeing really was: here is the S.P. projection map for that below...again nothing really manifest in the way of a clear/lighter zone...

 

n2017-06-10_20-37_PolarMap-South.png


Edited by Kokatha man, 17 September 2017 - 04:14 AM.

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#14 stanislas-jean

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Posted 17 September 2017 - 05:12 AM

For going through simply, remember of the Nick images (happylimpet) exhibiting an iced cloud on the pôle.
This was quite disturbing to me.
Reason why I draw the typical sketch based on this fact where the "expected and not reported" area was.
Because:
- bright pôle reported by Nick attributed to be a cloud,
- so many clouds reported, since a long time, as regarding the atmospheric circulation model we should have someting on the pôle area, but not a bright cloud rather abnormal.
Imaging does not involves the pure R segment (619nm), imaging is covering roughly the 880nm segment. These are not the same atmosphéric layers concerned.

In the respective views of different approaches, we could discuss and exchange a lot about the merits for each.
HST imaged Uranus (not Neptune) on 2012 from UV segment until NIR segment with filters covering also the methane absorbing bands (uv, 500nm, 619, 880 and others), it was very recognizeable the deep changes between segments, also the banding structure for the 619nm appearing.
The question with such documents is which contrast levels are involved? generally not answered. But rather low and according some evaluations and litterature found at Boston Library this is ranging from few tenth %, 0.5-1% on R, 1-2% on deep red, etc...
Under some conditions, even 10000 images taken cannot reveal such levels for lot of reasons. Sometimes the method performs anyway.
I see the question as.
But I may be wrong on some views (the atmospheric circulation model as one).

#15 Scott Beith

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Posted 17 September 2017 - 10:29 AM

Really impressive work.  bow.gif



#16 wilexpel

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Posted 17 September 2017 - 04:30 PM

Very beautiful images !



#17 Kokatha man

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Posted 17 September 2017 - 07:35 PM

Thank you fellas - appreciated! smile.gif

 

Hopefully we can continue to pick up data & assist in getting clearer ideas about all this Stan: your comments along with Steve's polar projection have reminded me that these "maps" could be valuable tools in "seeing" a bit more re Neptune...I have made them in the past but creating the ones I did for Post #13 has reminded me of their value again - I'll go back through all our data & do likewise when I have the time. wink.gif

 

Btw, I really meant to say "3-points" or somesuch - & not "3-digit" for that blue focus shift: I do like to adjust the focus for both Neptune & Uranus so that I can determine optimum focus within these 3 point adjustments (ie, 12 micron shifts) although sometimes that can be a bit difficult. (assuming decent seeing in the first place!)

 

In those circumstances, to clearly see the improvement in the blue focus with that adjustment was quite remarkable for us...it may have been the case at other times but this one has stuck in my memory! wink.gif



#18 moonwatching ferret

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Posted 18 September 2017 - 12:50 AM

Nice images Daryl


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#19 Kokatha man

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Posted 18 September 2017 - 02:34 AM

Thanks Ferret - about time you cut your teeth on Neptune & Uranus with your scope, eh..? ;)



#20 stanislas-jean

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Posted 18 September 2017 - 06:40 AM

Thanks to your data , subject to a disuscion, I still.
Windoows limits also.

#21 kevinbreen

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Posted 18 September 2017 - 10:30 AM

I miss Mr Ferret's awesome images. Rumour has it he's going to shoot some moon shots next 🍻

#22 moonwatching ferret

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Posted 18 September 2017 - 11:57 PM

Thanks Ferret - about time you cut your teeth on Neptune & Uranus with your scope, eh..? wink.gif

I cant see a #!###!!# *****thing . Its ******###! cloudy and raining lmost everynight plus my mother is becoming a comlete cripple I have to change her diapers and she cant hardly walk anymore. if my evil ****##! sister decides to sell this house to put mo in a nursing home I might have to sell the giant 16 incher. Iv had so much depressing stuff ging on around here i probably wouldnt even bother to image jupiter if it were at opposition and a comet was going to smash into it twice the size of shoe maker level 9 awe dang that should have been named after me if i had the right equipment at the time the **** comet was clearly visible before its discovery just with jupiter out of the eyepice field, it looked like a knotty edge on glaxy


Edited by moonwatching ferret, 19 September 2017 - 12:02 AM.


#23 Kokatha man

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Posted 19 September 2017 - 12:29 AM

I'm sorry to hear that Ferret - I can understand some of what you say about your Mum, Pat & me had to deal with that for a short while when she was still at home & it is very demanding...fortunately when it became Dad's time to be in the same boat I was in charge of the situation (Power of Attorney) & if I had a problem it was that I tended to be "over-fair".....I think it's very bad when one sibling doesn't play fair, but of course they often have plenty of excuses for their own behaviour, unfortunately! frown.gif

I hope you can hang on to your sense of balance bro - you are a natural with planetary imaging & I'm confident you can get a lot of rewards from keeping it going even if you have to fight to stay afloat sometimes: hang in there bro, the water has to slow down sometime or another for you! waytogo.gif

#24 moonwatching ferret

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Posted 19 September 2017 - 01:34 AM

its that power of attorney thing my sister has it i dont unfortunatly we cant stan each other. she is fortunatly way up north. cant wait to see the ook on her face when she finaly does see my scope.but i would rather look forward to seeing what changes occur on ol jove when it comes around the sun again. Ihave allot of people on this forum to thank for all i learned on imaging like what i did withthe deconvolution to get this awesome clavius 

march9moon3_AS_f2000_g5_ap468_2.jpg m hopefully i will et a clear night next lunar cycle after first quarter but I theink there would be a better chance of jpl sending a 40 incher into High altitude orbit around Jupiter to get some close ups of those tiny high altitude squal lines from the juno images. there probably water clouds or t storms way up above all the nasty stuff in the lower atmosphere



#25 moonwatching ferret

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  • Loc: sebastian fl

Posted 19 September 2017 - 04:31 PM

Looks bad I just came back from the doctor with mom and he recomended placing her in a nursing home. we decided to first try some at home physical therapy. the messed up thing is thereis absolutly nothing wrong with my mom aside fro,m she just cant walk anymore. its because she sleeps all day and is getting week. my evil sister is going to have t sell the house and out i go with the scope. I may have to sell the scope. first thing to go would be the 16 inch as a dob i would keep the mount and just throw the 12 inch on it. I doubt I will mak it to the next Jupiter aperition




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