[AZ-Observing] Sentinel Sat. 9-22

  • From: "Thad Robosson" <starstarcracker@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: az-observing@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Mon, 24 Sep 2001 06:47:57 -0700

Hey All, 

Well, the sky looked blue, so I went.  On the way, I notice a "cloud" in the 
general direction of Sentinel, and for a second, my heart dropped.  I turned 
out to be some sort of grass fire.  The atmosphere was so steady that this 
thing just sort of hovered there.  Even at 2am Sunday, this cloud was still a 
kind of "dark nebula" sitting in front of the Phx lite dome.  

For the most part, the seeing was in the 7~8 of 10 range, with moments of  9's 
and 10's.  Around 12 there was a while of 5's and 6's, but it seemed short 
lived. Transparancy was 8.5/10.

I picked off what NGC's I had left for this season, including 7331.  I was able 
to just make out 2 of it's fainter companions.  I then jumped down to Stephen's 
Quintet and while I couldn't pinpoint them, I was just able to make out 
possibly 3 of the 5 through my 8" f/6.

Another one was the "non-existant" NGC7133.  7133 doesn't exist according to 
the NGC/IC site, but yet it is plotted in most atlases.  However, the 
coordiantes of 7129 point to where 7133 is plotted.  (In other words, 
apparently the "cluster" 7129 and the "nebulosity" 7133 are the same object)
Anyhow, if you find the field, 7129/33 is the patch of 3 stars surrounded by a 
faint nebulosity.  Find the "L" shaped asterism, and it's right on the corner 
of it.  Many, Many thanks to the Pest for the quick loan of Night Sky 
Observer's Guide.  (I needed the pic in the book to verify what I was looking 
at.)

Saturn was a great showpiece this night.  The rings were just not quite tilted 
enough to see the Cassini division all the way around.  Cassini's division was 
visible nearly 100% of the time.  About 25% of the time, Encke's division was 
visible.  Otherwise, it just added a slightly grey hue to the outer rings.  The 
ball itself was slightly banded with the familiar mocha colors on top of a 
creme surface, not the banana yellow I've seen in the past.  But the most 
interesting details were an odd coloration of the inner rings nearest to the 
plane'ts limbs.  They appeared to be a rusty-grey color.
Is this a "refracted" light effect from the planet's surface?  Never saw any 
spokes.....

Winding down around 2am I turned the binos to Cynus and was able to make out 
the N. American and Pelican Neb pretty much in the same FOV in the 10x50's.  I 
was also able to make out the entire Veil complex in the same FOV.  Neither one 
showed up naked eye with the UHC filter, but both showed in the 'nocs easily.  
A year ago, I wouldn't have been able to do this, or known to use binos.  
Practice, Practice, Practice.  And of course good advise from those doing it 
for many more years than myself.

A worthwhile, peaceful divergance from an otherwise mad world.

Thad

Thad Robosson 
starstarcracker@xxxxxxxxx
SAC Member, ATM subgroup Chairman,
Double star enthusiast
Phoenix, Arizona, USA  
112 08.03W, 33 32.67N

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