Tuesday, March 19, 2013


Location:  Little Lepreau, NB, Canada

Date Time:  March 18, 2013 2000-2110Hrs

Weather:  -7 degrees Celsius, variable clouds, moderate wind.

Attendance:  Brandon, Myself.

Equipment:  Tripod, 20x80 Binos, Canon Rebel DSLR camera with 18-55mm and 75-300mm lenses.

Report:  Searched for Comet Panstarrs with binos from 2000-2035hrs with no luck.  Brandon and I viewed Jupiter and its four moons with binos.  Io was right next to the big planet and was suppose to transit Jupiter from 2228-2439hrs, later in the evening.  This would have put Ios' shadow on Jupiter at around 2343hrs!  This according to the Saint John Astronomy Club website

We then observed the Moon with binos.  Moon was one day before 1st Quarter.  Much detail could be seen especially around terminator.

After doing one last search for the comet with the binos, to no avail, decided it was time to try some time exposure images with camera.  Tried a few 20 second exposures at low magnification with the 18-55mm lens and no comet could be seen.  Then attached the 75-300mm lens at around 2050hrs.  By this time it was mostly dark and it was known that the comet should be just north of where the sun went down.  Sure enough, there it was!  Could just make it out with averted vision through the camera with the large lens set to high magnification.  It was just above the trees and heading down fast.  At no time in two observing sessions has this comet been naked eye visible to this observer.

No shooting stars or satelites were seen during this observing session.  One huge fireball was seen earlier in the day on my way home from work at 0400hrs.

Comet PanStarrs

Comet PanStarrs

Moon-Jupiter-Aldebaran conjunction.  Moon is one day before 1st quarter Moon.

Search of the western sky for Comet Panstarrs
Cassiopeia and M31

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