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Time to 'fess up. Who's observing Mars already?

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#76 davidc135

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Posted 07 May 2022 - 12:32 AM

A second attempt at Mars this morning between 4.30 and 5.00 local time with the planet between 5o and 10o above horizon. At least I saw it but I could make out no detail. Pretty good seeing with the outline moderately well defined at times so I thought I'd be able to make out the SPC but no luck. I expect I was being over optimistic with the altitude being in only single figures although I did see a mention of dust storms around Hellas. But I doubt if that's the explanation.

 

To counter atmospheric dispersion I had picked out a few microscope slides with reasonable figures and knocked up a couple of 2o prisms using uv cured optical cement which were held up to the eyepiece. They helped but a bit more experimentation needed but that will wait until the end of the month.

 

Magnifications of x60 and x120 with the 8.5'' slow Dob.

 

David


Edited by davidc135, 07 May 2022 - 03:33 AM.

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#77 CHASLX200

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Posted 08 May 2022 - 02:33 PM

I gave up on it. Just won't get high after 5 months.



#78 vdog

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Posted 08 May 2022 - 07:11 PM

I made another attempt this morning but the seeing has been really bad the last few days and I could not see much. I did get a decent look at Saturn, which was higher in the sky than the others. 



#79 Special Ed

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Posted 11 May 2022 - 04:15 PM

I looked at the Red Planet this morning with the unaided eye as I was taking a short break from my Saturn observation.  At about 5:00 EDT, it rose above the treeline to the SE of my observatory.  It was 14 degrees altitude at the time, the seeing was poor, and Saturn was about 5 degrees higher so I took a pass on it.


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#80 davidc135

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Posted 12 May 2022 - 02:58 AM

Another morning of fine seeing wasted for want of setting circles on my ricketty 8.5'' Dob. Plus my lazy Susan azimuth bearing needs a brake to slow it down. I picked up Mars in the bins easily but could I find it in my far too small finder? But I know what I have to do.

 

David



#81 csphere.d

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 08:31 AM

I spent some time with Mars this morning at 143x in my 4" refractor.  Mars is now at 6 arcsecs and was at around 27 degrees altitude at the time of my viewing.  Seeing was good at times so I was able to resolve the disk in its gibbous phase (88% illuminated according to the almanac).  The disk was pale orange in color with a dark albedo feature in the southern hemisphere which I later identified as Mare Sirenum.  Also, there was a definite white brightness along the Southern Polar Region.  

 

I would say we are still a couple months away from more productive and reliable observations, but its still fun to see what we can see now!


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#82 vdog

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 08:44 AM

Better seeing this morning, but it was still a struggle to pick up the details I'd seen previously.  The polar cap, which was fairly easy to pick up before, was more of a challenge today.  I wonder if it's already shrinking or if maybe there are some dust storms getting in the way.  


Edited by vdog, 14 May 2022 - 10:35 AM.

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#83 Special Ed

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 09:23 AM

Clyde Foster, posting images on ALPO-Japan, doesn't think there is any appreciable dust in the atmosphere.  It is about mid-spring (Ls 225) in the Martian southern hemisphere, so the SPC will be shrinking but is still fairly large in images.


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#84 Jeff B1

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Posted 14 May 2022 - 10:36 AM

Clyde Foster, posting images on ALPO-Japan, doesn't think there is any appreciable dust in the atmosphere.  It is about mid-spring (Ls 225) in the Martian southern hemisphere, so the SPC will be shrinking but is still fairly large in images.

Looking at the history of SPC widths, ALPO files, the SPC average width should be 40.4° (+/- 7.5°) so, Clyde's 2022-05-14 image measures 44.1° on 2022-05-14-0238UT (Ls 227.3°).    Ref:  http://www.alpo-astr...ing_Mars_3.html

 

NOTE:  Mars is 6" apparent dia so the errors will be a bit high, so take my image measurement close to a grain of salt.  It appears that the hood has dissipated, so the ice cap is revealed.

 

Clyde’s May 11, 2022 image is a little better, so the results may be closer to the truth:  SPC width 46.4° and the cap is clear of the terminator.


Edited by Jeff B1, 14 May 2022 - 03:19 PM.

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#85 Exnihilo

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Posted 19 May 2022 - 01:31 PM

Lol, just noting it naked eye for now, but waiting . . . 



#86 davidc135

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Posted 28 May 2022 - 12:23 AM

Another beautiful morning and the dawn chorus got me out of bed and looking at the planets. I watched Mars from 4.00 BST (UT +1 hr) until 5.20 during which the planet's altitude increased from 9o to 20o with image sharpness improving all the while in the fine seeing.

 

C.M around 260o

 

I managed a bit of detail; an equatorial smudge and the SPC becoming more convincing as the session went on, at least from time to time. The SPC appeared quite a bit smaller than currently showing in the images forum.

 

There was a suggestion of a paler band at the North pole extending a little way along the limb but with such a tiny object at the low magnification of x124 in my 214mm Dob I wonder how much artifacts and imagination contributed to details observed. Still, very glad to have made the effort.

 

Any observations with larger apertures from more southern latitudes?

 

David


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#87 vdog

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Posted 28 May 2022 - 08:02 AM

Another beautiful morning and the dawn chorus got me out of bed and looking at the planets. I watched Mars from 4.00 BST (UT +1 hr) until 5.20 during which the planet's altitude increased from 9o to 20o with image sharpness improving all the while in the fine seeing.

 

C.M around 260o

 

I managed a bit of detail; an equatorial smudge and the SPC becoming more convincing as the session went on, at least from time to time. The SPC appeared quite a bit smaller than currently showing in the images forum.

 

There was a suggestion of a paler band at the North pole extending a little way along the limb but with such a tiny object at the low magnification of x124 in my 214mm Dob I wonder how much artifacts and imagination contributed to details observed. Still, very glad to have made the effort.

 

Any observations with larger apertures from more southern latitudes?

 

David

My observations were very similar. Here I saw maria detail a bit better than a "smudge;" there were some edges and definition, and the SPC was distinct the whole time.

 

Oh, and always a pleasure to see another conjunction.  It's been a veritable dance of planets the past few months in the morning sky. 


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#88 jrkirkham

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Posted 28 May 2022 - 08:08 PM

I turned my telescope toward Mars & Jupiter this morning. It was my first time observing it this apparition.


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#89 Special Ed

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Posted 29 May 2022 - 02:44 PM

I took a look at the Red Planet this morning after taking some pictures of the conjunction.  Seeing was a little swimmy but gradually improved as Mars rose higher and sunrise approached.  I also used my ADC which helps considerably. 

 

The South Polar Cap was bright and appeared to be ringed with a dark border.  The albedo features were vague and ill-defined (I didn't preview before the observation).  I could see a bluish haze on the evening (preceding) limb.  The north was an orangish color with no detail.  My last observation was on March 18th when Mars was 5 arcseconds in angular size.  Now it's 6.4 arcseconds--that's progress!  

 

2022-05-29-0950-MR-CM340_v2.jpg


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#90 CHASLX200

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Posted 31 May 2022 - 06:40 PM

Still a boiling tiny ball with my bed seeing. It is a little bright and bigger vs 6 weeks ago.


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#91 vdog

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Posted 01 June 2022 - 07:53 AM

Still a boiling tiny ball with my bed seeing. It is a little bright and bigger vs 6 weeks ago.

Your persistence is admirable.  Surely you must catch a break at some point.



#92 CHASLX200

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Posted 01 June 2022 - 07:28 PM

Your persistence is admirable.  Surely you must catch a break at some point.

Most times i can have dead still seeing before sunup. But not this spring. 500x is easy on the 8" F/6, but i don't even fool around if seeing is a tiny bit bad.  My time will come. 


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#93 CHASLX200

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Posted 05 June 2022 - 07:19 AM

Got a look this AM. Seeing was close to a high 7 so still not that great. Looked gibbous and it was easy to see some detail.  This was with a Meade 8" F/6 826 Newt that is past insane sharp and a 5mm Delite.


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#94 LivingNDixie

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Posted 05 June 2022 - 11:38 AM

We may have a dust storm. Look at the images from Luca on ALPO-Japan. Here is the link:
https://alpo-j.sakur...22/m220604z.htm

#95 vdog

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Posted 05 June 2022 - 12:11 PM

We may have a dust storm. Look at the images from Luca on ALPO-Japan. Here is the link:
https://alpo-j.sakur...22/m220604z.htm

Interesting. I got a good look this morning nonetheless. 

 

Seeing was intermittently terrible, but with sustained moments of nearly perfect clarity. The polar cap was prominent, and I could pretty clearly see maria, Syrtis Major according to the S&T Mars Profiler app. 



#96 vdog

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Posted 09 June 2022 - 08:19 AM

Excellent seeing conditions this morning.  The SPC popped and Syrtis Major was distinctly outlined.   

 

I was able to boost my normal magnification of about 250x to 325x.  Magical.  I was so encouraged I pulled out my 3x Barlow for a look at 500x, but as good as the seeing was, it wasn't 500x good. 


Edited by vdog, 09 June 2022 - 08:22 AM.

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#97 Achernar

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Posted 12 June 2022 - 07:58 AM

I was observing Mars, as well as Venus, Uranus, Jupiter and Saturn this morning. I got a pretty good look at Mars at 300X through my 8-inch SCT. The seeing was good enough to see the polar cap, dark markings and signs of a polar hood over the other pole. Mars also showed a quite gibbous phase as well.

 

Taras


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#98 CHASLX200

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Posted 12 June 2022 - 02:50 PM

It was bad seeing this AM so back to a boiling mass.



#99 CHASLX200

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Posted 14 June 2022 - 07:18 PM

Gonna pick up a nice 12.5" F/5 this weekend so i will be ready when Mars is ready.


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#100 vdog

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Posted 15 June 2022 - 02:21 PM

I was observing Mars, as well as Venus, Uranus, Jupiter and Saturn this morning. I got a pretty good look at Mars at 300X through my 8-inch SCT. The seeing was good enough to see the polar cap, dark markings and signs of a polar hood over the other pole. Mars also showed a quite gibbous phase as well.

It kind of looks like a Mars-inspired Easter egg. 

 

Decent seeing this morning.  Was fairly easy to see all of the above.  I really appreciate the difference the filters I'm using make (Baader Contrast Booster stacked with a single polarizer).  Just for grins, I tried observing without the stack and, wow, what a difference. 


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