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Saturn

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#1 Asbytec

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Posted 20 June 2019 - 11:26 PM

I was out getting one of my first looks at Saturn a long while. It's still pretty low at about 25 degrees on the horizon before midnight in Pickering 5/10 seeing. A slight and rapid undulation across the disc. But, at 300x through an 8" f/6 there is still something to see. The disc and rings come to a crisp focus, no question when Saturn is in focus.

 

The equatorial zone is quite easy, of course. Not so easy is its very faint two toned appearance, probably the equatorial belt barely showing itself just above the C ring crossing the disc. The North temperate belt is prominent. At times, I get some feel it might be faintly divided, split, or two toned. Very hard to lock it down. The entire northern hemisphere is somewhat darker. But, I do get some periodic hints of fragmented brighter and darker swaths embedded across it. It's not evenly dark all the way to the tiny smudge of a polar cap. Probably just barely seeing some temperate belts and zones trying to peak through.

 

So, one (NTB) belt and one (EQ) zone for sure with some hints of the EQ belt and a temperate belt and zone. So, potentially 3 belts and 2 zones. A better night should show them better, I hope. It's very hard to accurately sketch the fleeting very low contrast features...this is the best I could make of Saturn and try to convey it as difficult. Colors, meh...not sure. Lacking something, not sure what. 

 

The C ring is seen across the disc and, amazingly though difficult, near the inner ansae of the rings. It has a beautiful almost silver hue to it. It's not as clearly seen as it was years ago when Saturn was closer to the tropical zenith in much better seeing. The B ring is darker in the inner perimeter and brighter at it's outer perimeter. Cassini is seen nearly around the rings and quite prominent at the ansae. The A ring is noticeably dimmer, but I saw no hint of the Enke minimum. Again, the Enke minimum was easily seen years ago when Saturn was better placed. I looked for the bright inner A ring bordering Cassini, but I could not really see it.

 

Saturn was kind of in the muck, but it was still showing some stuff. Not as well as it did years ago, but still quite striking. Need a little better seeing. If the monsoon remains mild and little rain, might get a few peaks between the clouds in the weeks ahead.

 

Of course I observed Jupiter quite a bit, too. One striking thing is the festoons do not seem to be as blue as they were in the past. Maybe it's a contrast thing with the prominent tawny hue of the equatorial zone, but they simply looked to be much darker tawny features sweeping into the EZ. Just me?

 

Oh, please ignore the shallow tilt of the rings and the southern hemisphere. This is the closest template I had to work with. After trying to make my own, this template had to do. Thanks. 

 

Saturn 17 June 2019 Small.png


Edited by Asbytec, 20 June 2019 - 11:30 PM.

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#2 NorthernlatAK

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 12:25 AM

Nice detailed sketch and observation. I need to wait a few years until Saturn is high enough of a worthy observation. It only rises to a max alt. of 12° or so at meridian in a twilight smoky sky (wildfire and lack of night) so I observe vicariously through folks like yourself. Your sketches often represent close to the same detail I see in the same aperture, especially the galaxies. At least the northern ones. I would be delighted to have saturn at 25° high, I haven't looked at it since about 1989 or so. Just got a telescope last year since then. Keep up the awesome work!
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#3 Asbytec

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 12:47 AM

I feel great knowing our observations are close to the same detail in the same aperture. I am glad you said so, gives me a foundation to have faith in. This stuff isn't always easy. Thank you. 



#4 Special Ed

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 09:12 AM

Norme,

 

Good looking sketch--I like the details shown.

 

Dave Gray has a +25 degree Saturn template around here somewhere that you can download, iirc.



#5 Asbytec

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 09:22 AM

Norme,

 

Good looking sketch--I like the details shown.

 

Dave Gray has a +25 degree Saturn template around here somewhere that you can download, iirc.

He does, I found it afterward. Gonna get some use if the wet season permits. Thank you. :)



#6 pedrovillamiel

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 11:18 AM

Fantastic
Congratulations for the work
Pedro.



#7 frank5817

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 12:02 PM

Norme,

 

This is a very nice sketch of Saturn. The colors look very good.

 

Here is where David Gray's template is located as mentioned by Michael above. It is entry # 9 in the thread. here

 

Frank smile.gif



#8 niteskystargazer

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 12:35 PM

 Norme.

 

Good sketch of Saturn smile.gif .

 

CS,KLU,

 

thanx.gif ,

 

Tom



#9 Asbytec

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Posted 21 June 2019 - 07:15 PM

Thank you all. I think Saturn's atmosphere is enjoyable because it's challenging. It's difficult. It challenges our senses and we have to really pay attention to the subtleties. Seeing conditions less than perfect do not make it any easier and can sometimes be frustrating. At first, I was just happy to achieve good focus, but then settle in for a long haul observation looking for the tiniest detail that might become visible for a brief moment.

 

To my mind, that makes Saturn very rewarding when we can see much of anything at all. And when we do, we just have to share it. Importantly, the rings are beautiful in and of themselves offering more than just the Cassini division. Saturn may not have the detail and the changing, dynamic atmosphere of Jupiter except for an occasional storm from time to time. But, what it does offer is a real challenge to our contrast acuity and an opportunity to push ourselves because we have to. If we want to see much of anything at all. 



#10 mana

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Posted 22 June 2019 - 12:07 PM

Great sketch, Norme !

I did not yet have a close look at Saturn this season... And I agree with you on the color of Jupiter's festoons.

Clear skies, 

Miguel


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#11 azure1961p

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Posted 17 August 2019 - 07:46 AM

Wow, I missed this post lol. 

 

As mentioned Dave is generous , perhaps you can transfer this to the correct inclined plate?

 

That temperate belt area is NOT an easy area to see.  In the seeing and transparency I've had the last several years at best a 7P this area is a bit of a middle and agrees with the way you've drawn it here.  At under 30 degrees altitude in the NE even 7P is difficult to get.  As it gets higher in the evliptic, I know you'll see more - everywhere including the rings.

 

It'b be a curious thing to see if you ever see anything budge at the edge of the outter A ring eh?  Common wisdom is no less than 10" at a full 400x.  But who knows.

 

Pete



#12 azure1961p

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Posted 17 August 2019 - 07:47 AM

BTW, those globe colors are way accurate. Super accurate really.

 

Pete



#13 Asbytec

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Posted 19 August 2019 - 04:46 AM

Pete, yes, the temperate belts are not easy to see. Not at all. I got only fleeting glimpses of some mottled appearance up there, only in the best moments when seeing settled down. Some ill defined light and dark structure. I tried to make them nearly as difficult to see in the sketch, but not too difficult no one can see them at all. Very low contrast needing a steady moment of seeing just to barely make something out up there. I wanna keep trying, though, see if I can improve my detection of them. 

 

Saturn is not too low on the horizon here, so... Still, Enke minimum was not visible, but it has been on a few other nights. Normally there is a brighter ringlet just outside Casinni division, but sometimes that is not visible, either. Sometimes it is. Got a good view of the hex as a small dark spot right on top of Saturn. No hexagonal form, though, just a dark spot. 

 

On the color, I actually got some greenish hues up in the temperate latitudes one night. I am  trying to adjust my color pallet, my previous Saturn sketches were too yellow. Still working on it. It looks a little pale to me, but it is what I have to work with. I thought about trying to re sketch it on the proper template, but man...the sketch above took a long time to get it close to right. I mean, among other stuff like adjusting the colors, I went in and cleaned up over spray from the digital airbrush...one pixel at a time. Otherwise it looks sloppy and Saturn is not sloppy. It's pretty crisp. 

 

Have not been out much since the monsoon really kicked in. But, had a few lucky evenings earlier last month. 


Edited by Asbytec, 19 August 2019 - 04:49 AM.


#14 Special Ed

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Posted 19 August 2019 - 11:01 AM

Norme,

 

I've seen creamy yellows in the EZ and greens in the temperate areas but also pinks in the equatorial belts.  Ever seen pinks?



#15 azure1961p

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Posted 19 August 2019 - 01:29 PM

Agreed Mike.  They can have almost a pale hollandaise hue. 

 

I recall your "too yellow" Saturn(s?) but u der the better seeing with the Mak you began getting the brighter inner edge of the A ring which was good.  Under 7 Pickering or better with my 8 it'd snap really crisp when the seeing settled. Not as bright as the B ring white, but what a beautiful cut detail.  I know you'll get this - repeatedly - in better seeing with the 8.  It's a beautiful thing really.

 

Yes the temperate area is the devil under P7 and not at all easy AT 7.   I don't recall the green but my last look stunk anyway and before that the last decent look was before it became decidedly olive.

 

I'm glad you are getting these peeks Norme.

 

Pete



#16 Asbytec

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Posted 19 August 2019 - 06:25 PM

Yea, I guess hollandaise is a good hue. I am not as good at picking hues as Pete is. 

 

Michael, yes, the EZ is a bit more hollandaise than I show. I'm glad we've both seen greens, I knew I was seeing it. Cannot say I've seen pink anywhere. I dunno how to describe the NEB, kind of a soft brownish or rust color. It seemed a little lighter through the middle. Normally I hit Saturn between 240x and 400x trying to find the right magnification to see it well. At 240x it's a little bright and small, at 400x it's a little dim and larger. At 330x is seems about right, but still difficult. One really has to watch Saturn closely, and I need a slightly larger image. A smaller brighter image, I think, provides better saturation, but I feel like detail is harder to pick out. Higher magnification provides less saturation, but detail is easier to see. So, I use a variety of magnification looking for whatever shows up. About 300x is a good compromise. But, I am not as experienced with Saturn as I am with Jove. I need more eyepiece time. 



#17 Special Ed

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Posted 19 August 2019 - 09:19 PM

Norme,

 

Looking over my log notes, I've seen the NEB as pinkish several times--usually Saturn's altitude has been in the thirties.  I've seen the SEB appear pinkish, too.  Look for it.  This is with the C14 and my C8.

 

Other times the equatorial belts appear brownish.  I've also seen the NPR appear bluish or blue-gray.

 

With my eyepiece/focal length combo on the big CAT and local seeing, 326x is a magnification sweet spot (much like you say).  On rare nights I've approached 500x (still burned into my visual memory).

 

@ Pete--I've never noticed the inner edge of the A Ring being bright, although I've looked for it.


Edited by Special Ed, 19 August 2019 - 09:22 PM.


#18 Asbytec

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Posted 19 August 2019 - 10:17 PM

Michael, okay...I am trying to see whatever I can see and whatever color I can make of it. But, yes, I have seen the bright inner edge of the A ring bordering the Cassini division. As well as the outer B ring, there is another bright ring there. The B ring actually has a few brighter and darker rings, only some of which I have seen. I try to see more of them, if at all possible. Enke minimum, too. But both require good seeing, apparently. I did not see them in this observation, but did in others (I did not sketch). 

 

I guess this image is as good as most showing the intricacy. The best we might hope for is resolve them in a much broader sense. But, I am keeping an eye out for any chance to go deeper into the rings. (By the way, I ran across an image that shows some pink in the NEB. Weird. smile.gif

 

https://www.jpl.nasa...php?id=PIA18308

 

Pink did you say? I'm not sure how real the colors are, but there is pink in dem der rings. 

https://media.npr.or...29-s800-c85.jpg


Edited by Asbytec, 19 August 2019 - 10:19 PM.


#19 azure1961p

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Posted 20 August 2019 - 08:14 AM

Well, it's there Michael, in fact in a C14 it ought to stand out famously. I know Dave Gray regularly sees it with his 16.3" DK.  I haven't seen it with my C6 but the planet was so low those times.  With the 8 it's like a seeing index indicator and when it really settles down, what a beautiful trim to that inner edge. The rings snap with clarity - there and elsewhere.  Naturally in the C90 it's not even close to being resolved lol.  But the image is cute!

 

Norme,

 

Yes the B ring really is scored with contrasts.  The better the seeing the better the zones define.  I don't see any hard edge anywhere in the B but as you say it, the differing areas are there. I've always felt the inner edge of B looks like a white napkin where water suddenly wetted out this inner edge darkening it somewhat.  Hey, maybe the Crepe is the *wet* ring eh?  Under really good seeing though, it's all about the study of nuances here.

 

A word on HST and orbiter images: I've found depending what filter it's images in can seriously attenuate certain regions .  Some are contrast-muted, (the inner A ring edge having no albedo) and other times visual contrasts are ridiculously boosted.

 

Pete



#20 azure1961p

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Posted 20 August 2019 - 08:26 AM

Here's a couple Saturn's.  The Pickering was 7 but super fast so it averages out less.  I think 6P would've been more accurate.  You'll see the trouble I had with the temperate belts   in one the inner A ring is a loss totally.  Higher pickering's really etch it in there but not here.  Neither are exemplary , just a fair average of as good as could be had at such low altitudes.  8 Pickering or 9+ which I had when it rose rate under a late August sky was another planet altogether. And Titan, what a defined disc!

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Edited by azure1961p, 20 August 2019 - 08:29 AM.

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#21 azure1961p

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Posted 20 August 2019 - 08:39 AM

Mike, here's a link from the imaging forum. Scroll down through the list of posts and you'll see the inner edge, albeit blurry in their scopes is clearly evident.   Infact if you peruse the images from your scope aperture/design you'll see it dramatically evident.  I'm wondering the following about your scope as you've mentioned not seeing this and other features in other objects that were seen with smaller apertures by me or others:

https://www.cloudyni...or-less/page-18

1. Defective optical set

2. Collimation issues

3. Unabated thermals in the OTA.

 

You ought to be at least seeing this fairly easy detail so long as seeing holds 7-8 Pickering or better.

 

Pete



#22 Asbytec

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Posted 20 August 2019 - 11:19 AM

Nice renderings, Pete. You did a better job than mine. More later when I wake to morning coffee.

Edited by Asbytec, 20 August 2019 - 11:19 AM.


#23 Special Ed

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Posted 21 August 2019 - 02:54 PM

Mike, here's a link from the imaging forum. Scroll down through the list of posts and you'll see the inner edge, albeit blurry in their scopes is clearly evident.   Infact if you peruse the images from your scope aperture/design you'll see it dramatically evident.  I'm wondering the following about your scope as you've mentioned not seeing this and other features in other objects that were seen with smaller apertures by me or others:

https://www.cloudyni...or-less/page-18

1. Defective optical set

2. Collimation issues

3. Unabated thermals in the OTA.

 

You ought to be at least seeing this fairly easy detail so long as seeing holds 7-8 Pickering or better.

 

Pete

You left out poor visual acuity/carelessness of the observer.  lol.gif   

 

Yes, I've seen that thin bright line in images but not so much in sketches.  I've seen sketches where the inner half of the A ring is slightly brighter than the outer half, but a thin bright line right next to the dark CD seems like it could be an irradiation effect, too.  But I'll keep looking.



#24 azure1961p

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Posted 23 August 2019 - 08:04 AM

Well, at this altitude, at least from the NE it's just too too low for that detail.  Prior to this, so long as the seeing was at least "good" yes it popped frequently.  Irradiation may be helping the feature but it's intrinsic  albedo to the ring itself.  It might add to it but it's sure as heck there.  A supporting point is that the very extreme edge of the A ring facing out is ever so slightly brighter than the interior but , at least the times I've looked there isn't a chance of seeing anything here but it's termination meeting black space. No uptick in contrast, no Enckes dither of detail regarding the Gap.  Just ends and space behind.  If irradiation of the A ring however was cause of the inner edge brightening then certainly it'd show on the outside edge as well. But, it's (slightly depressingly) plain here.  Who knows, maybe on an extraordinary 10 Pickering night that little albedo or Enckes might snicker but no such luck till now.

 

 

Nice renderings, Pete. You did a better job than mine. More later when I wake to morning coffee.

 

Well the seeing was slightly better - and that's all.  And the pale pale olive you have in the temperate,it's so good it's uncanny. A little jealous I didn't see it!!!!

 

Pete

 

P



#25 azure1961p

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Posted 05 September 2019 - 09:31 AM

Here's a poor seeing Saturn with the 8 where the rings didn't even reach all the way through!

 

Pete

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Edited by azure1961p, 05 September 2019 - 09:33 AM.

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