At last seeing was lovely with Cassini div visible all the way round and fine banding with a hint of Encke div in the r rgb - this compensated from lack of storm. Felt I should have used a longer fl then seeing deteriorated before improving again. Cloud kept intervening moving in 2 directions and one direction seemed to produced the bad seeing which improved quickly. Seem to be getting a run of clear nights with good seeing. Also tried a gif animation of red channel, should really try an rgb animation but don't have time with deep space imaging first part of the night.
Last edited by John Hothersall; 27-01-2011 at 12:14 AM.
I'd be interested to hear what Anthony thinks about the 'spokes'. To be honest, I doubt very very much whether it would be even remotely possible to capture them from Earth, especially at that focal length.
I see the 'marks' on the rings in the animation too, but it could be dust motes, or something else. Even Damian Peach's or Anthony's best images never show a hint of the spokes captured by space craft which are a hell of a lot closer to the planet than we are.
The encke division is certainly possible, but it's also easy to 'simulate' the encke gap by over-sharpening.
Not taking anything away from John's beautiful image.
It looks like the spokes can extend across much of the B ring with fairly high contrast under the right conditions, so they could possibly be visible from earth - it's quite stunning if John did image them. Be good if others could try to image the same effect.
Yes Ray, this was the footage that I was thinking of when I made the statement. No offence to Anthony or Damian but just because they have never picked them up before does not mean the spokes cannot be captured. We (planetary imagers) already work well beyond many defined limits of physics capturing detail.
Enke capture is real and most often not now simulated Mike. When people were using toucam's this could well have been the case but all the new equipment has allowed great definition. This image from John is very sharp and one can see the planet through the rings. I have only seen this once when imaging Saturn and the seeing was exceptional. I would suggest this is real.
That footage linked by Ray was captured from Voyager, a space-craft orbiting, or at least on the way to Saturn. That's a big difference to capturing it from a billion kilometres away, at 10metres focal length.
I agree the Encke gap can and has been captured from Earth - not saying it's not real in this image, but it is not often captured when the rings are still at a reasonably shallow tilt. It's easiest to capture those divisions/gaps when the rings are closer to maximum tilt.
Yes the top one but that does not mean Chris would have noticed them. It is entirely possible that I am the first person to notice this from other peoples images. Of course that does not mean I am right but it also does not mean I am wrong!
I also have just noted that one of Trevors images from the 24th in his animation just vaguely shows some of these spots in a simlar position on the opposite side of the rings.