[AZ-Observing] Re: Sunglow (was: Tucson Observing Sites)

  • From: "Frank Kraljic" <fjkraljic@xxxxxxxx>
  • To: <az-observing@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sun, 23 Dec 2001 10:40:19 -0700

> Dark, clear skies matter a great deal, and in that regard a number of
places in Arizona that may not offer
> regular sub-arcsecond seeing nevertheless rate as excellent sites because
> they allow viewing of dim objects that cannot be seen as well (or at all)
> from sites not as dark and/or transparent.

I agree, and fortunately (but not for mature understanding), I have yet to
experience consistently dismal dark conditions.  After speaking with east
coast amateurs at the GCSP, I gained a greater appreciation of what our
state has readably to offer.

Adding to my spoiled bias, I have also been fortunate to live in area of
Scottsdale that apparently produces good seeing on the order of 400-560x
sixty percent of the time.  I'm sure this is what fuels my uselessness
attitude toward lower magnifications.  I admit, dark and transparent
conditions have allowed me to observe many obscure objects and features
through my 10".  However, at magnifications below 250x, the detail in the
deep sky objects becomes a wash and as a result, the night is spent
observing open clusters ;) and large, bright show pieces.  In the case of
planetaries, this is a major disappointment, as well as for faint fuzzies
with subtle detail.

I think AZ skies are typically good for seeing (average 250-300x), just
Sunglow is consistently below that standard.

> Band details and festoons were crisp and clear, and most memorable to
> me is that it was the only time I've ever seen clear detail on
> the face of Jupiter's moon Io.

Curious, what detail did you observe?  Was Io in transit or isolated?
Similarly--and at Sunglow--on two occasions I observed "structure" on Io.
The latter instance I'm less confident in than my first encounter.


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