Old 08-12-2008, 02:03 PM

Coen is offline
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Adelaide, Australia
Posts: 180
70mm refractor - some doubles+extras in Phe

29 November 2008 local time +10.5 to UT
Sometime spent familiarising myself with the constellation spread across maps 30 and 36 of Taki's double star atas and B83&98 of the B series of the Tri-Atlas.

Time 2121 local.
Telescope is 70mm Skywatcher with the 15mm GSO, 10mm basic and 6mm Plossl.

Seeing around 5 or so.

Theta Phe 2142 local time
Reasonably easy to find this rather choice double. A close pair split easily by the 60x, primary is a pale yellow/orange and the close companion is blue-green. About a magnitude difference. Nice one to enjoy. Seeing has stars down to about 10.5 magnitude.
Documented: Stars are 6.53 & 7.27 separated by 3.9".

HDO 303 2154 local time
Nothing at 60x or 90x, maybe something at 150x. A sketch of the field indicated stars to magnitude 11.2 visible suspected location of the secondary is not correct - no split.
Documented: Stars are 7.18 & 9.33 separated by 2".

HJ5416 2213 local time
Nothing at 60x or 90x. Sketch at 150x and using averted vision locates the companion. The companion is a reasonable distance but magnitude difference makes this double a challenge.
Documented: Stars are 6.8 & 10.4 separated by 45".

I305 2229 local time
Nothing at 60x or 90x, 150x might be something. A sketch indicates visibility to about 11.6 magnitude and a nearby to the pair magnitude 10.5 star visible via averted vision. Not seen.
Documented: Stars are 6.88 & 10.88 separated by 3.14".

Missed attempting Zeta Phe - on map 36 of Taki's atlas and I stayed on map 30.
Documented: Stars 4 & 8.23 separated by 6.8"; the magnitude 4 star a pair of 4.02 & 6.8 separated by 0.6".

After viewing doubles - there are not many in Phe suitable for a 70mm - turned hand to viewing some deep sky objects, especially galaxies.
Seeing was not very good. Drifted away from Phe.

Started with NGC 55
The field has few stars to frame it. The galaxy is bright and cigar shaped with brightening towards one end and perhaps a brighter streamer coming off one side. Good view. Only used 60x.

NGC 300
Field is a little richer than that around NGC 55. NGC 300 is harder to spot being a somewhat circular glow/blob that is noticable when telescope is bumped. There is perhaps some blobby bits in certain directions that taper off but hard to tell.

NGC 247
Sometime spent star-hopping to this region and confirming in the correct location. The reversing of the view due to the refractor from that which is shown on maps takes getting used too. NGC 247 appears to be faint and cigar shaped. More of an edge on small blurr than anything else and appears stellar in nature most of the time.

NGC 253
It is hard not to keep coming back to this one. Amazing almost edge-on galaxy that fells most of the 60x eyepiece from edge to edge. There are some nice framing stars around the galaxy as an added bonus.

NGC 288
This globular was found by star-hopping from NGC 253. It is a faint, largish, circular ball that has a fairly even brightness across it. There is nothing distinguishing about it, no brightening to the middle or anything else. Easy to pass over due to its faintness.

47 Tucana
This is one truly magnificent globular cluster with its brightness, its brightening to the middle, its chains of stars radiating out, impressive at any magnification. 60x hints of resolving bits of the outside. More resolution at 90x from the outer to the core. At 150x it fills the eyepiece and more chains are resolved even in poor seeing. With the 150x eye-relief becomes an issue. Amazing sight even from light polluted suburbs.

Breathing taking. No chance of resolving other components of Trapezium beyond the four, faint star embedded in edge of nebular on the way to M43 from the trapezium is visible especially via averted vision.

Attempted to find and found after some effort. Hard to locate and distinguish. Very non-descript.

1 December 2008 local time +10.5 to UT

Telescope is 70mm Skywatcher with the 25mm Plossl, 15mm GSO, 10mm basic and 6mm Plossl.

Seeing around 5 or so. Cloud cover from time to time.

Continuation of viewing on 29th, small amount of time available.

Zeta Phe 2258 local time
Split with 60x and 90x although harder with 90x. Companion is faint in comparison to main. The main is yellow-orange hard to tell what colour the secondary is. The star is not split with the 36x (25mm). Sketch indicates stars to about 11.4
Documented: Magnitudes 4 and 8.23 separated by 6.8".

Xi Phe 2330 local time
Some time spent on this double, first confirming correct location. Used 60x, 90x, 150x with initially no success. Maybe there was a small chance of seeing it but not conclusive in anyway shape or form. Eventually seen! briefly! 60x and is very fleeting. Sketch indicates stars to about magnitude 11.4 with some hints of 11.7
Documented: Magnitude 5.72 & 9.95 separated by 13.1".
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