Audio Observation October 16, 2009 Pit n Pole

Well, the seeing that night started out wonderful, and as dew came in around 12:00a.m. or so it got worse. Overall a wonderful night, with some wonderful images and a fantastic view of the Milky Way. I did some sketching and will add those here as I scan and copy them over. BTW, I will add another observing audio session this weekend and then I realized something terrible happen! I keep a scan copy on my computer back up hard drive of my sketches and on my photobucket account but I lost my original packet! I cannot find it at all. Oh well, at least I had them scanned I guess.

Here are the three sketches from that night. One did not come out right so I may rescan. Have to get use to how this scanner works at work!

NGC 40: The planetary nebula in Cepheus. A nice looking planetary where you can see the central star. Observed the nebula and the central star without a filter, my Ultrablock filter just brought out the nebula a little more.

The galaxy NGC 7814 in Pegasus. A nice looking galaxy that the more time you give it, the more details you'll see. Dark lane is evident and the shape was evident also. Fun object and I encourage you to take a try!

NGC 7510 Open Cluster in Cepheus. Appears wedge shape and about 20 stars are evident if I remember right (need to listen to the observation!). It appears to be surrounded by a nebulous haze, but with averted vision I could resolve more stars. I tried to capture that here but the scan came out rather small.


Some YouTube Sights

Weather hasn't allowed me to observer this month, well, the moon was out when it was clear. I have audio to add and I'll do that next week I think. Today I spent some time on YouTube and found some treasures I want to share.

This is called Sidewalk Astronomer and features John Dobson and is done by BullFrogFilsm. Love the reaction of people who don't view and those who do. May we each find a way to always do some type of outreach:

This one, Sky This Week, is a week late and they have posted the new one yet so I'll post last weeks so you can see what these are like. Simple in some ways, good for a beginner or if your like me, a Deep Sky Object Observer I enjoy the information on the planets.

Finally, here is Tonight's Sky October that shows some objects for October's Sky. I really like how they show the Great Square of Pegasus as a baseball diamond, and show a pitcher, catcher, manager arguing with an empire and plenty of fielders! Check it out!


Observing Session September 25th, 2009

Well, lets see if I can get caught up this weekend with my blog. I have this session and the audio recordings of the session and then two other items I want to add. Time, I wish I had more time right now.

NGC 7044 Open Cluster Stansbury Park SPOC 02:43 UT Seeing 7 XT10 13mm and 21mm Stratus @ 92x and 57x
No Sketch of this Object was done except a crude and rough one for for a finder in my observation notes I wrote by hand.

I am observing tonight with a friend from Cloudy Nights and we are at SPOC, the Salt Lake Astronomical Society's observatory and observing site. Sky conditions are good and they are slightly darker than at home.

NGC 7044 is very dim open cluster in Cygnus. I went to Deneb to Gamma Cygni and then to 68 Cygni. From 68 I observed three stars running up and down not in a straight line, but like this:

From the middle star I went over and I ran into the cluster, using low power or 57x in this case. No real variance in the stars, poor cluster in terms of the number of stars that are visible. It has a semi west to east chain and a northern chain running off of this west to east chain. There is a hint of a glow to the cluster and if the first quarter moon wasn't out, I do believe I would be able to detect that glow even more.

NGC 7062 Open Cluster in Cygnus
September 25, 2009
05:09 UT
Stansbury Park SPOC UT
Seeing 7/10
13mm and 21mm Stratus @92x and 57x

I went to Deneb to Gamma Cygni to 68 Cygni to 71 Cygni. At 71 I moved the eyepiece up and over and then four stars fown on each side. O'Meara's short guide in the Gudie to the Herschel 400 is spot on. At 57x this open cluster has a definite glow to it. Three bright stars form a L line with 2 fainter stars completing a diamond shape. There is a hint of other stars wanting to come out. Medium rich cluster and at 92x the diamond pattern is really evident. I did not sketch this one.

NGC 7086 Open Cluster Cygnus
September 25th 2009
Stansbury Park UT SPOC
Seeing 7/10
Orion XT10
13mm and 21mm Stratus at 92x and 57x
Limiting Magnitude: 8.4

Easy to find from NGC 7062; O'Meara nails this star hope quite well. Go to Messier 39 and up to Pi Cygni and then over 2 stars to 3 stars that are like this:

* *
(more dramatic up above, move the middle star up just a little). From the middle star I went down and to the left and the cluster was easily visible. At 57x the cluster shows a tight cluster that is medium rich in terms of stars. At 92x a question mark set of stars is visible with several other chain of stars. There is a M asterism up and to the right (not sure if that is part of the cluster or not). Nice open cluster. Here is the sketch of this one:

The same cluster by the Digitized Sky Survey. Orientation in the photo is different from the sketch with north being up in the photo.

NGC 7128 Open Cluster in Cygnus
September 25th 2009
Stansbury Park SPOC
Seeing 7/10
13mm and 21mm Stratus @ 92x and 57x
Listed Magnitude: 9.7
No Sketch

This is a very small and poor cluster in terms of stars. At 57x it shows a diamond pattern (sometimes I think we get a pattern in the mind and that night we see it again and again) with averted vision. Some chain of stars are evident. At 92x it shows the glow still and has a trapizoid shape, or better a house shape. Small and tight open cluster. To find I started at NGC 7086 and went up to the double that is visible and then over to the triangle asterism and straight west.

From the Digitized Sky Survey

NGC 7009 Saturn Planetary Nebula
September 26, 2009
07:06 UT
13mm Stratus and 5mm Hyperion @ 92x and 200x
Orion Ultrablock Narrowband Filter used
Seeing: 8/10

I have to say that O'Meara's directions in his H-400 Guide as I am calling it are spot on for finding this object that I've seen multiple times. Follow his directions, enough of mine. Greenish in color tonight for me, and the nebula is looking disk shape or rounded with two slight bulges on the ends. Edges are sharp and light is regular across the nebula tonight. At 200x I can see more of a slight bulge almost like mini handlebars. The filter helps to bring out more of the shape of this PN, but isn't really needed. Wonderful and fun object as ever. I sketched this item but just realized I did not scan it in. I will update that later.

From Digitized Sky Survey:

That's it!!!! I finished O'Meara's September Herschel 400 objects. Weather cooperated as did timing so that is good. October I am hopeful for but we have some major changes coming so I'm not sure about that.

I did get a jump on two objects though that I will put down though I need to return to sketch them as I really liked them:

NGC 7479 Barred Spiral Galaxy in Pegasus
September 26, 2009
Stansbury Park UT
Seeing 8/10
13mm and 21mm Stratus @ 92x and 57x
Listed Magnitude: 10.8

When I first observed this the central bar was highly visible at 57x. At 92x the spiral arms emerged and I could detect them with averted vision, and patience, LOTS of patience on this one. I had too look and wait practicing my averted vision and mixing that up with direct vision to get the arms to come out. I will return in October to sketch this one. Pretty and a good galaxy to practice squeezing detail out of. The galaxy sits in a triangle asterism of three stars. The image below is somewhat reflected of what I saw. The central bar is easily that visible and the curving of the two arms is also visible.

From Digitized Sky Survey:

NGC 7448 Spiral Galaxy in Pegasus
September 26, 2009
08:05 UT
Stansbury Park SPOC, UT
Seeing 8/10
Listed Magnitude: 11.7
13mm and 21mm Stratus @ 92x and 57x

I used the Sky Atlas 2000 for this one and found the target quite easily when using O'Meara's directions and the Sky Atlas 2000. This galaxy has a bright core and is slanted while facing us, not edge on but not fully face on either. I did not detect structure tonight. Then again, I am really, really tired and need to tear down or I will have to sleep by the observatories and the sheriff won't like that (he came by checking on what we were doing which is a good thing since there is so much expensive equipment here). The galaxy almost appears at first to be elliptical in shape though with a lot of patience and experience one realizes this is a spiral and is just not showing detail.

Digitized Sky Survey:

Next time I should have more sketches to put up. I had a wonderful evening that night with those that observed with us. I used an Orion XT10 and the other scope was a Z12 by Zhumell. The Z12 had very good optics and showed excellent views, but I learned from it that I have to decide now whether to see my 15 inch Truss Dob to go down to a 12.5 discovery (or 14 inch discovery). The 15 is just a little too high for me and my back. So until next time, clear skies to you, and if you don't have clear skies, may you find an activity worthy and enjoyable of your time.