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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Late Spring Planet Show Images and Report

Location:  Little Lepreau, NB

Date Time:  May20/12 2045-2300hrs

Weather:  18 degrees Celsius, clear skies, slight wind.

Equipment:  Canon Rebel DSLR attached to Meade 8"LX200 telescope with no eyepiece.

Attendance:  Richard P., Myself.

Report:  Very nice viewing conditions, but the slight breeze that was coming off the Bay of Fundy was enough to bounce the image too much for long exposure shots.

Venus was big and bright in the western sky just as the sun was going down.  Saturn was in the SE above and to the right of Spica and Mars was high in the SW in the constelation Leo.

This was my first time getting an image of Venus in the crescent phase.  There is not much to see when looking at Venus, except for the phase.  The atmosphere is so thick that all we can see with ground based telescopes is its off white colored atmosphere.

There was another first for me on this night:  This was my first image of Saturn that clearly shows its rings.  It was determined that by adjusting the shutter time to a faster speed and decreasing the ISO setting the image went from a shinning blob to a clearer view of the ringed planet.  The next phase in increasing the qualitity of my imaging is to stack photos. 

There was also another first for Richard on this night:  Richard did not know that Venus sometimes appears to us as a crescant shape through even small telescopes or binoculars and this was his first time observing this phenomenon.  Its always enjoyable to give someone a first time observing a celstial object.

One curious thing was that there was no shooting stars observed on this night.  Usually there are at least one or two and we were there observing for over two hours.








Camera set to 1/8 sec shutter time and ISO 400

Camera set to 1/3 sec shutter time and ISO100

Camera set to 1/100 sec shutter time and ISO 400

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