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Old 08-11-2010, 10:35 AM
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Liz
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Last viewing for 2010 in FNQ

We had our group viewing on Saturday night, which was our last for the year. So much moisture around already, making things very tricky.
Took a few pics earlier of Scorpious sinking in the west, trying to capture Mars in its claws, but damn trees captured Mars instead.
Was a great night though with clear skies ... quite a few good objects viewed, satellites and a few good meteors.
Airstrip was a bit damp from a huge amount of rain they had had during the week. The owner said that if we had been there a few days earlier, we would not have been able to get down there!!
We had a welcome from the local cows, all lined up along the back fence.
Quite a few objects were seen and enjoyed. Jupiter was up for starters with a shadow transit of Io, and later was the GRS. This didnt seem to as bright as i would have thought, but perhaps the seeing mucked it up a bit. It was pale spot in the void SEB.
47 Tuc was looking mighty pretty as usual, and the Tarantula was scary.
Other objects enjoyed were NGC 253, M77, M57, Andromeda galaxy with M31 and M101, Orion nebula, Mira, galaxies in Dorado and more.
We searched for Comet Tempel but was too faint for us at nearly mag 11.
The highlight of the night for me was the stunning carbon star W Orionis. Seems it has a period of about 214 days, and decreases to mag 12, and is 699 LY away. It was a glittering red jewel!! As many would know, I am also a lover of carbon stars.
Rex also found Hinds Crimson star in Lepus, R leporis. This is a well known carbon star, but was quite dim on Saturday night. It ranges from 7.3 to 9.8 over 420 days.
Later we checked out Comet Hartley, which has faded to a faint round, nebulous blob.
We called it a night about 0030, our equipment wringing wet.
We pack up now until March/April, though I can do little stints in the backyard.
Bring on 2011!!
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Old 08-11-2010, 10:46 AM
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astroron (Ron)
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Nice Report there Liz I am glad you got in a good night for the last viewing night of the season
I hope you get some viewing in in between now and March
all the best
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Old 08-11-2010, 02:38 PM
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Paddy (Patrick)
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Sounds a great evening, Liz. Haven't had a look at W Orionis - sounds beautiful and I love carbon stars so I'll have to visit it.

Hope you have some good backyard sessions to get you through to March
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Old 08-11-2010, 03:35 PM
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Liz
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Thank you Ron and Paddy.
Alas, minimal observing from December/Jan/Feb .... scope gets packed away all cozy.
W Orionin was quite bright, which I know = less red, but seemed both on Saturday night. You cant miss it Paddy!!
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Old 08-11-2010, 07:31 PM
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Sounds like a fun night and I'm sure you'll get a few over the summer Your obs of those northern objects remind me of the time I went to Cairns, saw the Big Dipper for the first time and it was a shock seeing other horizon huggers nearly halfway to the zenith!
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Old 08-11-2010, 11:26 PM
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Liz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pgc hunter View Post
I went to Cairns, saw the Big Dipper for the first time and it was a shock seeing other horizon huggers nearly halfway to the zenith!
Yes, the Big Dipper, well, part there of, does hug the horizon, strange.
Am about to head to Victoria for 2 weeks, so look forward to some better skies. Alas, no scope. Will be nice to see the Southern Cross, which is presently below our horizon.
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