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Old 06-11-2018, 02:30 PM
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mental4astro (Alexander)

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Jen, i sympathize with your situation. I certainly understand mobility difficulties. I'll come up with some more urban-doable challenges. There are many people, young and old, who have mobility difficulties - video astronomy is a great way that helps many people participate in astronomy, and at minimal cost

That's given me an idea for this last Challenge...

Challenge No. 6.1...

Uranus & Neptune using binos or small aperture under urban skies.

Following on from Jen's post, I don't see why I cannot modify my challenges. Both Uranus and Neptune can be tricky to pin under urban skies, so have a crack with your binos, small scope or evdn just your finderscope!

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Old 29-11-2018, 03:06 PM
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mental4astro (Alexander)

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Challenge No. 6.2

Mars & Neptune conjunction this early December!

Ok, are you still struggling to find Neptune?

Well, here's your chance to nail it for certain!

Next week between the 6th and the 8th of December, Mars will come within 1 of Neptune. In fact, on the 7th it will be within 4 minutes of arc! In other words, both planets will be in the one field of view, with as much magnification as you can muster on the 7th!

Below are a few Sky Safari screenshots of the conjunction for the 6th, 7th and 8th of December, along with a screenshot of the location Mars can be seen in the sky - not hard really as it will be the brightest "star" in the western sky in the early evening.

NOTE TO SCREENSHOTS BELOW: Be aware that the three zoomed-in screenshots are all of slightly different scale! While the spacing may look similar between each, note that each screenshot lists the angular separation between Mars and Neptune for all three nights. And in the top right of the screen shot the field of view of each shot is also noted.

Happy hunting,

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Last edited by mental4astro; 29-11-2018 at 05:15 PM.
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Old 29-11-2018, 05:47 PM
morls (Stephen)
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Thanks Alex, this is great.
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Old 02-12-2018, 11:54 AM
ausastronomer (John Bambury)
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Originally Posted by mental4astro View Post
Challenge No. 5

The Massey Alignment

Firstly, I am not so arrogant as to name something after myself! Instead, this name was given to this most unique apparition by some of my friends, so why not go with the flow

For the next few days from the writing of this post, and on two more occasions next year, it will be possible to view ALL the planets, plus the Moon and Pluto all in the sky at the one time!
Congratulations Alex,

Don't be surprised if your friends soon name a space mission, or spacecraft after you and in 200 or 300 years time you will be remembered along with the greats like Galileo, Cassini, Huygens, Hubble etc !

John B
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Old 02-12-2018, 03:30 PM
Wavytone (Nick)

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Found Neptune a pretty easy target last night - start at Mars and offset from there. Small blue-green disk at 200X in poor seeing.

The conjunctions of Neptune are also interesting historically in another respect because when it was discovered it was 1 degree from Saturn.

Some of the C18-C19 scopes clearly had exquisite optics based on the double star observations, Im a little surprised this 8th mag interloper wasnt noticed in earlier conjunctions.
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