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Old 26-04-2009, 12:47 AM
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Davekyn (David)
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12" Dob Out Of Town - Carina/Centaurus & Leo

NGC3372 / NGC4945 / NGC4835 /NGC 5128 & M65 & M66
Date 25/4/09
Time 8-11pm
Seeing – Clear/moderate to cool & dry
Light pollution – Very Low, minor sky glow, reasonable dark site.
Location – 12km SW of Toowoomba (Federation Park)
Telescope 12” Dob – 1.25” Bintel UHC filter

I’m new at this...my apologies if you can’t follow it.

Not a bad nights viewing. Took the young fella (12) who seems to like making the cupas and using the 10X50s, if not just hanging out and drawing a few pics himself hoping the next time we’ll camp.

Took the 12” Dob out after having practiced with the ED80 & studying some pics of the Carina Neb...The effort paid off as this time round, I had a much better idea as to what area of the Nebula I was looking at. First off I used my 2” GSO 42 Super View which equates to aprox 35X/1.9 degrees. Not having a 2” filter I basically used this EP to get my bearings as I peeked from the scope to my iphones PDF reader to which I earlier prepared some digitized maps & photos. I was much better prepared this time round and boy oh boy how the clouds just billowed out as I put in my 1.25” 25mm plossel – 60X/.9 of a degree...& my Bintel UHC filter. Truly if I was impressed with how the filter worked in my little ED scope...I was truly blown away with the results my 12” Dob was doing with this filter...

Use this Detailed Map as I refer to the areas I viewed:
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi.../NGC_3372d.jpg

OK...so...not having the FOV with filter to cover the lot, I started by locating the dark nebulous patch down the bottom area , just above the Large Variable 520w...Once I confirmed this location with the triangular pattern of stars tightly packed just off to the side of this dark region, (Area d1 Herbig Haro Object Stellar Jet area),I slowly moved about admiring how noticeably the lighter and darker areas seem to fold into each other. I never really got a chance to see the effect with M42 Orion, and although I am sure if I put in as much effort, during its peak viewing times, I’m not quite sure it would win over on this.

After checking out the star cluster (c1) I headed over to the “keyhole Neb & was very satisfied to make out its shape, however note that if I stared to long at it, that it’s dark region would spill out into the surrounding area losing its shape. I found it better to keep my eyes moving about to enhance the shape of the darker regions by keeping the brighter ones actively reflecting off the cones of my eyes...or however it works.

I wanted to see what my 12mED2 EP from AOE would do, and slipped it in for a squiz...not bad...not as dull as I thought it would be...key whole still held its shape, whoever I do believe I lost a fair bit of nebulosity...I was getting tired with all my concentration at this stage and was keen to move on...perhaps as I learn more about it, and do a few sketches I can attempt to see my details down the track...none the less I was really impressed with tonight’s viewing of the Carina Neb.

Before I packed up...it’s not often that I drag the big fella out...I wanted a quick peek at some galaxies that seem to elude my ED80...first I tried for 3 in Centuraus...NGC4945...I just could not get this one to show up in the little scope...BUT...I smiled as I could easily make out the rather large elongated shape, between the two stars angled so in the picture I studied previously on wiki...I must say though, I am glad my ED80 gave me a clear address to look at as it did show up the little triangle within a triangle nicely (and the two stars that reside either side of the galaxy...just not there with the ED J )...I knew exactly where to look and I have to say that NGC4945 was the best galaxy I’ve seen so far in my 12” Dob....................OK.....just above the Omega Glob I spied on NGC5128 & yea I could see the dark lane in the middle of that galaxy...BUT...It was as if I could only see half the picture? Like at first-WOW I can see the dark lane...but what happened to the other half of the galaxy...weird. Well having had a good night, I thought I would try a Mag 12 Galaxy...NGC4835...I had to star hop well and target just the right triangle (such a common shape)...I found it...and look forward to getting better views with new techniques or simply practicing the ones I know...........OK lastly just a quick look below Saturn...yea...found that star and its neighbor...off to the left to find that sickle shaped pattern above Leo...target just above the handle and presto M66 and 65 show up nice and bright in my 25mm plossel...not sure if with that EP, but I do believe I glimpsed a third galaxy, however, was more interested to see what my 12mm would do...It was able to keep both 66 & 65 “JUST in FOV, however time was running out, & I was unsure how I felt on the contrast and what not. I was happy to still be able to make out the overall shape as I centered each galaxy in the 12mm.

Well...time to pack...all I could think was that next time I would need all night to do my sketch a the Carina neb and record me obs as I go next time...will have to take the tent for sure. Overall I’m happy with my progress.

Last edited by Davekyn; 26-04-2009 at 05:39 AM.
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Old 27-04-2009, 02:50 PM
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Lismore Bloke (Paul)
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Good report David. When you start comparing magnitudes and what you can observe visually, then magnitudes don't tell the whole story. 4945's mag is 9 and 5128 is 7 and can be spotted faintly in the finder, however I find that mag 12 galaxy 4462 in Corvus is a relatively easy pickup from home. I suppose that the smaller galaxies are easier to spot than the big diffuse or face on ones. Surface brightness is just as important as magnitude. Like you, I find that the bottom half of the 5128 "hamburger" is much fainter than the top requiring averted vision to see at all. The filter seems to be working great for you. Have you tried it on galaxies, or just nebulae?
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Old 27-04-2009, 03:22 PM
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toryglen-boy (Duncan)
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Nice one Dave, good report. I can alawys see M66 and M65 ok, although the 3rd always seems elusive, i can see it with averted vision, but from straight on its more of a 'hint' that its there. Is nice to read something from someone who obviously has alot of passion for thier observing

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Old 27-04-2009, 06:05 PM
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Davekyn (David)
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Thanks for the encouraging words. I really can't wait until I have time to drive out again. I have not really tried using the filter on galaxies. I think I did once at home with no real effect (worse) but I guess in the right place and the right target, it may me worth it?

I am hoping that the Bintel OIII filter I have is as good as thier UHC. I think I'll be heading 50km out NW to a friends paddock out in Haden. Last time I took the Dob out there...Holly Shmolly...The Crab Nebula was awsome!!! The sky was pristene after showers and not a hint of artifitial light anywhere. I had no filter...target was easy enough...think I used two EPs to locate it...but when I did...I could make out the fillaments of shockwaves crashing into eachother. I don't think my mates understood or saw the same thing as I did...but after seeing what a UHC can do on emission nebs (I hope that's right), I am really excited to see if OIII filters help to enhance some planetary nebs like the Crab

I did try my OIII on the Blue Planetary Neb from home last night...but understand you need a brighter target with good contrast, that my light polluted yard struggles to provide.

Glad you mentioned surfice brightness and what not LB. I'm not fully up on all that...but am learning. Found some good info on that subject pertaining to galaxy obs. Apart from learning that...I wish to properly record my seeing conditions with a number rating, but don't understand how that's done? Light pollution/seeing?

Time to get back to work...have a good one guys & thanks for the feedback.
Cheers
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Old 27-04-2009, 06:35 PM
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Lismore Bloke (Paul)
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I think we're basically trying to do the same thing. My observations have not been recorded and have been rather haphazard. I plan to keep some notes, even sketches, however rough. I will try to use the observing log template provided on this site:
http://www.iceinspace.com.au/files.html

As far as seeing and transparency goes, it is a subjective judgment, but this site has a scale that is as good as any I've seen:
http://www.backyard-astro.com/Logs/logsreport.html

There is an article on these forums that has a good scale too:
http://www.iceinspace.com.au/63-196-0-0-1-0.html

Cheers, Paul.
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Old 28-04-2009, 08:00 AM
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Davekyn (David)
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Thanks Paul,
That's perfect! I just sat down for over an hour on my Iphone, working my way back and forth over those links, whilst adressing each of the finer points within those scales & ratings. I aslo discused the differences of each and methods on how to inform the reader as to what scale was being used. Let's just say...I put togeather a really good post to ponder over...BUT...my Damn Wife rang me and when I hit the home button, I lost the whole post.

Arrrrgghhh...Oh well...maybe bring those points and questions up later. Thanks again, I really needed to sink my teeth into all that anyways. My next report should be on that template...to which I had question on aslo..dogh!

Man...I'm so pissed she rang...I was just saying my goodbyes on the tailend of it all...arrrrr...to he'll with it ... LOL

Edit...just wanted to add somthing that popped up in my pea brain...The Size Of an Object. Please tell me, I don't need to grab a compas and measure its size over the EP with a ruler and calculater. Can I just use google for that?

Last edited by Davekyn; 28-04-2009 at 08:14 AM.
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Old 28-04-2009, 03:40 PM
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Lismore Bloke (Paul)
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Don't you just love those computers, even if they are mini size!!! As far as sizes of objects, many astronomical catalogues give the size of an object. As an example, this excellent post by glenc has an excel file of the brightest 111 DSO's that are not on the Messier list. The size of each is there. I'm a bit vague on these things myself, trying to get my head around these sizes compared to the field of view of various eypieces!! There is a bit of a learning curve out there and I'm definitely still on it. There are many other lists by Glen,as well as others, covering different classes of DSO, galaxies, globulars, planetaries etc. Worth a site search. Cheers, Paul.
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Old 28-04-2009, 03:41 PM
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It would be better if the dillbrain posted the link. DUHHHH!!

http://www.iceinspace.com.au/63-322-0-0-1-0.html
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Old 28-04-2009, 03:59 PM
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Another way to find out sizes, positions, magnitude etc is to use a star chart programme. I use Cartes du Ciel, which is a freebie. It's a bit messy and clunky, but can produce a nice clear accurate star chart that can be printed off and used outside. Good enough for me. When you click on an object's name, a dialogue box appears with all the info on it. A lot of observers use and recommend Stellarium and apparently the latest version is pretty good. It may have the same features.
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Old 29-04-2009, 12:46 AM
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great report! If only I could be outside but unfortunately I live in cloudy depressing horror climate of Melbourne where everyday from APril to November is cloudy
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