Observing - what did you see tonight?

With what did you observe?

Discuss celestial objects and phenomena outside the Earth's atmosphere, Earth-launched satellites and exploratory missions, etc....

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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#61  Postby Macdoc » Sep 11, 2014 2:26 am

What did I see/feel.
A severe front with storms and heavy rain and tornados

what did I observe with??

My migraine headache.

sigh
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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#62  Postby FBM » Sep 11, 2014 3:26 am

The_Metatron wrote:Your pic?

Luna was striking this morning between the Douglas firs in Eugene.


Yep. 30 stacked images taken through a 90mm tracking scope.
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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#63  Postby The_Metatron » Feb 23, 2015 5:14 pm

Last night's show of Saturn near Mars, then Luna, then Jupiter, was very nice over Oregon. Nice clear skies.

No telescopy for me yet, though. My garden has a limited sky (though I improved it dramatically by having three giant goddamned oaks taken down). The park down the street is nice, but I have no battery to power the drive motors on my telescope yet.

I also have an idea to rig up a bike trailer to carry my scope cases, so I can travel to the really dark parts of the parks along the Willamette river.
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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#64  Postby Arnold Layne » Feb 23, 2015 6:06 pm

I saw this on the 18th. I used a 100mm lens on a Pentax K5, with an attached Pentax O-GPS1 Astrotracer. That allows longer exposures than would normally be possible without star trails. here I stacked only 10 images of 1 minute each in Deep Sky Stacker.

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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#65  Postby The_Metatron » Feb 23, 2015 8:42 pm

That's some goddamned nice work.
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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#66  Postby Arnold Layne » Feb 23, 2015 9:27 pm

The_Metatron wrote:That's some goddamned nice work.

Thanks! It's good fun, and I've only just started. Who knows what I'll find! :grin: Once it stops raining, obviously!
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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#67  Postby kiore » Feb 24, 2015 3:23 am

Well I have been living in places that are too polluted by light or smog to see much in the sky for the past 5 years, now in NYC and not much better, but tonight saw 2 'stars' although suspect they were planets, quite bright and not far from the position of the moon. First time in 3 months I saw something other than aircraft and the moon.
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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#68  Postby DougC » Jul 29, 2016 12:27 am

Not me, but-

B.B.C. - Chinese rocket lights up skies over Utah and California

I love one guy, "There's no Shuttles coming in, is there?"

FFS :nono:
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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#69  Postby aliihsanasl » Jul 31, 2016 10:45 pm

I saw tweets, actually its trend topic that Nasa had signals from space 40 K light year away :scratch:

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Then learned that it was joke :lol:
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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#70  Postby Macdoc » Aug 01, 2016 5:00 am

There is a terrific Perseids coming up Aug 12th and 13th supposed to be double or more the normal high rate.
Lots of fireballs in this stream....and I'm in Australian winter .....yay.....nice and clear skies the norm.



I've seen even large fireballs in formation from this stream. Make the effort despite the moon.

Last time I went I saw four or five just driving to the viewing area ( remote airports with no lights are great )
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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#71  Postby Macdoc » Aug 11, 2016 12:13 pm

Image

PERSEID METEOR OUTBURST--TONIGHT! Earth is approaching a thicket of debris from comet Swift-Tuttle, source of the annual Perseid meteor shower. When Earth plows through the debris field on Aug. 11-12, the fireworks will begin. Forecasters expect an outburst of Perseid meteors numbering 200+ per hour. Scroll past this photo of an early Perseid, taken by Harlan Thomas on August 10th northeast of Calgary, for more information and observing tips:


http://spaceweather.com

If it's clear - take a night ride to a dark place.....200 per hour is incredible.
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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#72  Postby Alan B » Aug 11, 2016 8:54 pm

Yeah. It's dark here - I think they are called clouds. :thumbdown:
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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#73  Postby tuco » Aug 11, 2016 9:00 pm

Its pretty straightforward in the city .. nothing no matter what. I hear about 70/hour over here which is still good show.
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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#74  Postby theropod » Apr 13, 2017 1:10 am

IMG_5720.JPG
9/2016 Persid
IMG_5720.JPG (1.06 MiB) Viewed 474 times


First off, yes I am back. Like a bad penny.

I have taken up a fucked up hobby with the worst equipment possible. The above Persid meteor was captured with my iPhone 6 plus using the NightCap Pro app, and old worn out Silk tripod and the earbuds as a shutter release. Since this photo was captured I have over 200 images of meteors.

IMG_3104.JPG
IMG_3104.JPG (572.7 KiB) Viewed 474 times


This is also a Persid and might be my best one to date.

One will note that in both images a dotted line of light. These are airplanes. The app works by holding the phone camera shutter open and the user can adjust the white balance, ISO, focus and either manually end the shot or set a length of time. Living near Memphis where UPS and FedEx both have hubs, and on a near straight line from St. Louis to Dallas it is almost impossible to not have a plane cross the frame.

Most frustrating is to have a segment of the sky selected and have a nice meteor streak by just out of the frame. This has happened several times.

I have built a barn door tracker using an Arduino Nano to drive a bipolar stepping motor via an Easy Driver board to allow fine smooth steps. My plan is to lower the ISO and take extra long exposures to limit star trailing, and hopefully capture multiple meteors in one image. I built a mount from 2 X 4's which are attached to a plastic 55 gallon drum filled with water and resting on a leveled crushed limestone bed.

Enjoy, and like it or not here I am again.

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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#75  Postby theropod » Apr 13, 2017 5:11 pm

IMG_4297.JPG
Space Junk
IMG_4297.JPG (466.5 KiB) Viewed 453 times


Having watched the night sky for more hours than I care to think about I have seen some odd things. Among those oddities I have seen, and captured, this is the most unusual. My feeling is that this was either a hunk of junk burning up, or a very odd shaped rock. Since this was traveling much slower than any meteor I have seen I feel it must have been man made. This was early in my learning curve of the hobby and the software, and I didn't get a good ISO setting which resulted in the graininess. Whatever this was sure had an odd "flight" path and seemed to be spinning wildly.

Thoughts?

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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#76  Postby Alan B » Apr 13, 2017 5:39 pm

I'm sure the conspiracy nuts will have something say about that last one...

What did I see tonight? Lots of cloud with a misty moon poking through. Not much fun in Brummy land. Too much light pollution.

Got all the gear - just haven't had a real chance to use it. At my age it's getting a bit much to lug it around and set it up. Saving it for my son when I eventually go.
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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#77  Postby theropod » Apr 13, 2017 6:37 pm

Ha, conspiracy nuts. Whatever it was burned to ash. If the object had passengers they miscalculated their attack angle pretty badly. I wish I had gained more experience using my phone in this capacity before this happened, as the loopy whirling path was nothing like I've seen before.

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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#78  Postby crank » Apr 13, 2017 7:01 pm

You took that with your phone? Was it mounted? How did you happen to be photographing that particular spot? What shutter speed did it end up using? Did I ask enough questions yet? :grin:
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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#79  Postby theropod » Apr 13, 2017 7:26 pm

Yes, this is all being done with an iPhone 6 plus. I am using an app called NightCap Pro. Yes, the phone is mounted via a DIY bracket to an old worn out Silk tripod. The shutter can be triggered via screen touch, or with the earbuds. I usually just pick a section of the sky and start shooting and what I get I get. The app has two modes to either select a given length of time to keep the shutter open from one second up to hours, or another setting where the user controls exposure time manually. The app allows for various ISO settings from 20 up to 12k, white balance, exposure from 1/64 to 1/2 (1/2 works out to F 2.2) and manual focus which I keep on infinite.

Below is a one hour exposure with Polaris centered in the frame. The reason I saved this photo was because the rarity of not having an airplane pollute the shot. There are a couple micro meteors in this shot, but not why I kept it. This was in manual mode with an ISO of 1,000, white balance of 3,000, exposure of 1/2 (f 2.2).

IMG_3165.JPG
One hour exposure.
IMG_3165.JPG (702.12 KiB) Viewed 436 times


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Re: Observing - what did you see tonight?

#80  Postby felltoearth » Apr 14, 2017 1:40 pm

theropod wrote:
IMG_5720.JPG

I have built a barn door tracker using an Arduino Nano to drive a bipolar stepping motor via an Easy Driver board to allow fine smooth steps. My plan is to lower the ISO and take extra long exposures to limit star trailing, and hopefully capture multiple meteors in one image. I built a mount from 2 X 4's which are attached to a plastic 55 gallon drum filled with water and resting on a leveled crushed limestone bed.

Enjoy, and like it or not here I am again.

RS


Nice! What kind of tolerances are in play here, ie. how level is level etc.?
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