[AZ-Observing] Saturn Occultation

  • From: "Frank Kraljic" <fjkraljic@xxxxxxxx>
  • To: "AZ Observing" <az-observing@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 10 Sep 2001 07:14:21 -0700

Like Brett Watson, I also set up my 10" Dobsonian early that night to
observe this morning.  At 225x, seeing was noticeably soft.  Although
Cassini's Division was plainly visible, I found focusing difficult to attain
a sharp edge.
        Dropping the magnification to 70x prior to first contact allowed both 
moon and Saturn to rest in the same field of view.  Even though the third
quarter moon--a favorite phase--was blinding through ten inches of aperture,
I gauged a unique perspective with an object ~250,000 miles away, to a
planet over two billion miles distant.  Absolutely impressive the sheer
imaginable size of Saturn, no matter how small it appeared in the field.
        Honestly, I felt the disappearance was rather anti-climatic.  
a few other occultations in the past, I personally prefer to watch a planet
slip behind an invisible darkness than behind a bright limb.  With that in
mind, I returned observing just minutes before reappearance.
        The moon, more appeasing in brightness, but shallow in contrast, lay
stationary in a blue-gray wash.  Starting at 81x, and the moon full field, I
waited until a pale orange-yellow arc appeared out of nowhere.  I quickly
jumped to 225x, and watch the remainder of Saturn emerge from nothingness,
as if the spectacle were a magic trick of sort.  Definitely well worth the
time and effort, even with the sun shinning well above the horizon.


This message is from the AZ-Observing mailing list.  If you wish to be
removed from this list, send E-mail to: AZ-Observing-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx,
with the subject: unsubscribe.

The list's archive is at:  //www.freelists.org/archives/az-observing

This is a discussion list.  Please send personal inquiries directly to
the message author.  In other words, do not use "reply" for personal
messages.  Thanks.

Other related posts: