Date Time: December 8, 2018 1830-0005hrs
Weather: Went from -12C to -13C with a reported windchill of -20C. Wind picked up till about 2100hrs, then died off. Mostly clear to clear.
Equipment: Canadian Telescopes 80 ED/APO on motorized tracking mount, 32mm eyepiece, 20x80 binoculars on tripod, Canon Rebel with 18-55mm lens and attached to telescope at prime focus. Images processed on PhotoShop.
Attendance: David McCashion
Objective: To view and image a Mars/Neptune conjunction and the Comet 46P Wirtanen.
- Viewed and imaged the Mars/Neptune conjunction. Mars was easy enough to find, but Neptune was not picked out amongst the back ground stars, even in the images.
- Comet 46P was very easy to find in the binoculars. It was huge, greenish and diffuse with a brighter central region. It moved eastward towards Taurus, approximately 5 degrees from where it was two nights ago.
- Was able to see the comet with averted vision, for the first time. Its huge and reminds me of M31 when viewed with unaided eye under dark skies.
- Nearest bright star to Comet 46P is the 4.5 magnitude star Menkar in the Constellation Cetus. According to Richard Hinkley Allens' "Star Names Their Lore and Meanings", Menkar is Arabic for"Nose of Cetus".
|Comet in the SW sky just after midnight. Camera with 18-55mm lens, 30 second exposure.|
|Facing South, Camera with 18-55mm lens, 25 second exposure.|
|Camera attached to telescope at prime focus, 2 minute exposure.|
- Five shooting stars were seen directly with three more out of the corner of my eye.