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Saturn...The Football

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#1 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 12 April 2004 - 03:30 PM

I suppose this is in other threads ad nauseum...but what conditions do I need to see Saturn as other than a football?

Using Celestron Sky Master 15x70s on hefty tripod.

Ever since I bought them it's been heavy cloud cover but last night I got a peek at a very bright Saturn and all it needed was the NFL logo.

Jupiter is showing it's moons nicely deliniated in between cloud banks but I REALLY want to see Saturn better. Usual parking lot light pollution.

Maybe the planet was too bright?

Thanks
Doug

#2 EdZ

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Posted 12 April 2004 - 03:59 PM

Magnification of 15x and 16x will just barely show a black space between Saturn's rings and the disk. Saturn approaches detail at magnifications around 40x to 80x.

edz

#3 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 13 April 2004 - 06:54 AM

I can confirm EdZ's claim. At 22x I can just barely see a little black space between the ring and the disk, BUT the over all shape is football-like.

#4 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 13 April 2004 - 10:05 AM

Oddly, I'm glad to hear that. Thought for a bit the eyes were going south. Thanks.

#5 sftonkin

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Posted 13 April 2004 - 11:14 AM

I can see the space between the disk and the ansae clearly at x20. I have seen it once at x16 (Fujinons). I was unable to see it in the Helios 15x70.

Btw, I am sure that Kenny J will confirm that it's Mars that looks like a football -- Saturn looks like a rugby ball!
:tonofbricks:

#6 Guest_**DONOTDELETE**_*

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Posted 13 April 2004 - 11:35 AM

I'll need to get my regionals in order...

American Football. :bow:

#7 KennyJ

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Posted 13 April 2004 - 04:21 PM

Stephen,

Following that historic innings by Mr. Lara I wouldn't mind betting there are now two or three CRICKET balls fitting the description too :-)

Back to the main point - I think to clearly discern the rings of Saturn , or more specifically the "gap" between the rings and the main sphere, at only 15x requires not only EXCELLENT seeing conditions , but even more excellent optics.

In my opinion , the challenge is very similar in chances of success to that of seeing the 4th trapezium star in Orion.

In both cases , it's good to definitely see these things at around 40x through a scope ( or large binoculars )then at least one "knows" what they are looking for , but therein lies the danger of "imagination" kicking in :-)

I can actually "positively identify" Saturn through my Zeiss 7 x 42s -- but of of course not by virtue of ring separation.

Regards -- Kenny.

#8 rboe

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Posted 13 April 2004 - 06:50 PM

I have yet to see the space in my 15X70 Obies. Sometimes I think I see a glimpse of it but that could be wishful seeing.

#9 Gord

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Posted 14 April 2004 - 03:13 PM

In my Burgess 15x70 (on a tripod of course), Saturn is a football shape as everyone describes, and I can see the blackness between the rings and planet.

It's pretty close to what I see in my ST80 @ 16x.

Jupiter is just hinting at the two main cloud bands. Depends on the seeing and how tired my eyes are. Looking at a CRT all day everyday and being in a bored mood at work doesn't help...

I should also note that almost all of these observations have been from inside looking out through plate glass. Outside is likely better.

-Gord


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