Saturday, June 11, 2016


Location:  Front Porch, Little Lepreau, NB, Canada

Date Time:  June 10, 2016 2145-0030 .hrs

Weather:  Partly cloudy to mostly clear, no wind, 5C no bugs, lots of dew.

Attendance:  Myself

Equipment:  Meade LX 200 8" telescope with 19mm eyepiece, 2x Barlow, and a .6 reducer.  A Canon Rebel Xsi with telescope attachment.

Objective:  To troubleshoot alignment issues with telescope.

  • First day without rain in ten days!
  • Seeing conditions were not good.  In the eyepiece much turbulence could be seen.
  • Waxing Crescent Moon was about 4 degrees west of Jupiter which stood out clearly well before dark at 2145 hrs.  Mars stood out at this time also, in the southeast.  Mars was nearly as bright as Jupiter, but notably redder.
  • Before working on alignment issues, took images of the Moon with focal reducer and camera attached to telescope.  Clouds moved into this part of the sky for a prolonged period.  For some reason, when focal reducer was removed to get more magnification, the images were not coming out clear...rather unfocused.
  • Imaged Jupiter and Mars with camera attached to telescope at prime focus.  There were long cloudy period in the south and south west.  Over-head, Northern and Eastern sky was clear.
  • Re-entered coordinates for Lepreau Basin into telescopes computer, then aligned scope on Denebola.  Then used goto to find Jupiter and it worked!  Alignment issue solved!  Most importantly this allows for tracking objects which is essential for imaging.
  • Did a prolonged search for M104 the Sombraro Galaxy, which is suppose to be inbetween Corvus and Spica.  Could not see it in the 19mm eyepiece.  Might try 20x80 binoculars next time.
  • Viewed Mars with 19mm eyepiece and 2x Barlow and with a red light filter.  There seemed to be a line of different, darker color close to one side.  Other than that there was little detail across the disk, even though it was huge in the eyepiece.
  • Saturn was viewed in 19mm eyepiece and the 2x Barlow.  Clouds and unsteady seeing conditions limited the view separation between the planet and its rings could be seen.
  • Delphinus could be seen in the East after midnight.
  • Ursa Major was high overhead, in the NW.
  • Jupiter and Moon were in Leo.
  • Saturn and Mars were in Scorpius.
  • No shooting stars and one bright satellite was seen moving from the NE to the SE.


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