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Old 24-02-2009, 01:54 PM
Coen
"Doc"

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Location: Adelaide, Australia
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70mm Refractor - Vol Tour + Extras

12 February to 22 February 2009 local time +10.5 to UT

Telescope is 70mm Skywatcher with the 25mm Plossl, 25mm basic, 15mm GSO, 10mm basic and 6mm Plossl.
If eyepiece unspecified it is 60x 15mm GSO.

Tour of Volans

Tri-Atlas 2nd Edition Hybrid (M) 202, 203, 204, 215, 216

Observing list compiled from CNebulaX (CNX) and from having M maps near the telescope and attempting to see anything marked near where the telescope is.

Post observation checking also incorporating StarCalc (SC) and Cartes du Ciel (CdC)

Information on the objects from CNX unless otherwise noted and adopting CNX notation.

For double stars this is: magnitudes, separation in arc seconds, position angle.

12 February

Slight breeze, seeing about 6/10, two days after full Moon

Gamma Vol (2130) Dun 42
Lovely unequal double that is good in the 70mm at both 36x and 60x. At 90x and slightly defocussed get a yellow and aqua green.
Documented: 3.86-5.43m/13.7/297º

HJ 4164 (2140)
Located near alpha is a faint unequal pair with secondary just glimpsed at 60x and clear at 90x. Primary has orange tint.
Documented: 7.68-9.53m/10.7/145º

HRG 19 (2150)
Not resolved.
Documented: 7.28-10.0m/4.4/165º

Beta Vol & SWR 45 (2155)
Beta is nice bright star with an arc of stars around it giving the visual impression of Beta being located at the centre of a partial ring of debris. There is a faint almost equal pair of stars that is SWR 45 making up part of the ring.
Documented: 10-10.1m/25.0/308º

HJ 4075 (2200)
Very faint and unclear initially which star it is from the chart. There is a faint trapezium arrangement (two stars of magnitude 11.5 & 11.3 plus two stars of around magnitude 10) and there is also a small group of stars located where the galaxy P23113 is located. This double is not resolved as later consultation with CNX and CdC reveal.
Documented: 9.87-10.3m/3.6/263º

GLI 81 (2210)
Faint almost equal wide pair - initially mistaking another set of stars with a nearby 11.5 star as a possible secondary. There is also another set of stars nearby that could be mistaken for it and I initially did.
Documented: 10-10.3m/31.0/42º

Moon now becoming known.

Epsilon Vol or RMK 7 (2215)
Lovely close very unequal double located in a nice field. Secondary appears bluish and just separate at 60x, primary large with hint of yellow/orange. Unable to resolve nearby INN 192.
Documented: 4.38-7.31m/6.0/24º (RMK 7)
Documented: 7.32-9.57m/1.8/173º (INN 192)

HJ 4055 (2220)
Located near sparse cluster of stars is this faint almost equal double just separated at 60x. Appears to be a fainter star (magnitude 11.2, another closer at 11.8 not seen) located to the south and not far which is just seen at 90x. In 36x Plossl the view is of two orange orbs just separated in moments of good seeing located in a nice field.
Documented: 8.65-8.65m/5.8/190º

HJ 4023 (2230)
No sign of resolution at 36x Plossl, 60x or 150x.
Documented: 8.47-8.83m/2.0/219ABº

Moon, wind and seeing becoming an issue.

Kappa Vol (2235)
Beautiful triple star arrangement with two almost equal stars and a third fainter with a redish-orange tint. A very pretty arrangement.
Documented: 5.4-5.7m/65/57ABº
Documented: 5.7-8.5m/37.7/30BCº
Documented: 5.37m/B9III (Kappa 1)
Documented: 5.65m/A0IVMn (Kappa 2)

NGC 2466, 2442, 2443, 2434 (2245)
No chance, Moon well and truly in the way now. All in the same FOV (or near enough to). There might be a hint of something but far from conclusive.
Documented: NGC 2443 GALXY SBbc/11.2m/5.4'X4.9'
Documented: NGC 2442 GALXY SBbc/10.4m/5.4'X4.9' (NGC 2442 & 2443 same galaxy)

GLI 69 (2250)
Not resolved.
Documented: 9.74-9.79m/2.8/329º

22 February 2009 (not just Volans!)

After a long break due to weather and other factors recommenced. No Moon, some breeze.

INN 351 (2140)
Not resolved, probably due to bright sky and ordinary seeing.
Documented: 6.5-10.0m/16.4/334º

NGC 3342 (2230) The Ghost of Jupiter (in Hydra)
A bright planetary that appears as a greyish blue fuzzy almost circular ball that has the same general (although size changes) appearance at all magnifications. Interesting object.

HJ 4075 (2240) back in Volans
There is a hint of resolution but not definitive.
Documented: 9.87-10.3m/3.6/263º

NGC 2442 & 2443 (2255)
There is perhaps a hint of something there, a faint fuzzy glow in approximately the right area - really needs darker skies. There is a a couple of faint small groupings of stars nearby.
Documented: NGC 2443 GALXY SBbc/11.2m/5.4'X4.9'
Documented: NGC 2442 GALXY SBbc/10.4m/5.4'X4.9' (NGC 2442 & 2443 same galaxy)

HJ 4011 (2305)
Faint almost equal pair that is just resolved at 60x and clearly split at 90x.
Documented: 9.81-10.2m/20.1/301ABº

HJ 3997 (2320)
During brief moments this one is resolved at 150x as an equal pair. Has a distinct peanut shape at other times.
Documented: 7.07-7.02m/1.9/124º

GLI 100 (2335)
Nicely separated with averted vision at 60x, clearly seen at 90x. Unequal pair.
Documented: 8.74-9.79m/5.5/141º

Left Volans at this point, there were other double stars to see on my list but they were in general at magnitude 9 or greater. Learning that these are not that entertaining to view in the 70mm as a rule of thumb. So doubles such as HJ 3955 were initially considered but not pursued.

Now time for a general look around.

Omega Cen (2340)
What adjectives can you use - reminds me of certain Top Gear episode with James having the Alpha Romeo Italian adjective box on the dashboard. This truly is a wonderful object and I look forward to seeing it in larger apertures as well as darker skies in order to appreciate its full impact. In the 70mm at all magnifications it is fantastic. Stars are resolved almost to the core with a salt and pepper effect. The object has a sense of three dimensions and is large and elliptical.

NGC 5128 (2350)
Small ball at 36x Plossl with stars superimposed on it. At 60x there is uneven brightness with a pac-man kind of look and the ball is almost cut in half. The ball is not even with one half decidely brighter (southern) than the other (northern). The larger chunk missing is on south east (I think I have the orientations correct). This object is worth spending a bit of time with.

NGC 4945 (0005)
This is an edge on galaxy in Cen. Scanning around and spending a bit of time gives no real hint of it at all. There appears to be something stellar at the location of NGC 4976.

Saturn (0010)
Saturn is clear with Titan and Rhea to one side. The rings are a nice thinish line poking out from either side of the nondescript ball that is Saturn at 60x in a 70mm. Also on the same side but not in the ring plane is another object about 2 to 3 times further out. There are two objects off the pole of Saturn and another hint of two objects on the otherside of Saturn within the distance of Rhea and in the plane of the rings, these are seen fleetingly. Later consultation with Star Calc indicates Rhea, Titan and Iapetus on the one side and Tethys and Dione on the other are in the orientations that match the sketch I made. There are stars of magnitudes 10.4, 11.5 and two of 11.2 scattered around with the two off the pole both being 11.2.

Comet Lulin (0025)
Easily spotted in binoculars cruising from Saturn towards Spica. It appears as a rather large unresolved globular in the eyepiece at 60x at perhaps 1/2 to 2/3 size of omega Cen. It is bright with a greenish tint. There is a bright non-symmetrical centre and no immediate indications of a tail.

Observations cut short as cloud rolls in.

Which constellation next?
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Old 25-02-2009, 08:03 PM
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pgc hunter
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nice report mate. I agree with your comments re NGC 4945, it seems to have low surface brightness so unless you're under dark skies you wont see much. The ghost of Jupiter is a corker, another interesting planetary you might want to try is the Eight Burst (ngc 3132) in vela.
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