Sunday, July 18, 2010

Fun in less dark skies

Last night, I went out to my usual just outside of Waco site.  Not as dark as the observatory in Clifton, and not only was the moon out, but there was a fair amount of traffic.  But I had my 13" which compensated to some degree.

The moon looked OK at 500X and better at 375X.  Venus showed its phase, but that was all.  With the exception of the Splinter Galaxy (NGC 5907) which I hadn't seen before but which happened to be on the Best of NGC/IC list I was using and with a high altitude, I was looking at Milky Way objects.  M57 looked rather nice--no central star (never seen that), but a nice eye shape, not just round.  M13 looked decent as did M92 (which was hard to find for some reason;  maybe because AstroInfo wasn't set for the current time).

Most of my time was spent going through objects in Steve Coe's What's Up Sagittarius and Scorpius articles, which I keep plucked on my PDA (with permission;  I even have it set up in a cool way so that when I click on an object in the text, it takes me to AstroInfo's search, though this wasn't working always last night).  I did all of the Sagittarius objects (Coe only covered a small portion of each constellation) except B91: M8, M20, M21, Collinder 367, NGC 6544, NGC 6546, NGC 6559.  I thought I had B91, but I had overestimated its size (to remove that problem in the future, I added Barnard's catalog of dark nebulae to AstroInfo).  And then I did a few of the Scorpius ones: M80, M4, NGC 6144.  There was a clear dark lane in M80.  6144 was hard to find.

I ended with a look at the Veil Nebula.

The views in the mediocre conditions in the 13" were similar to those in the 8" in the better conditions of my previous session, though M13 was better resolved.

No comments:

Post a Comment