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Moon, Saturn, Mars, Antares, and Arcturus

Posted: 19 September 2012

The observatory was opened Tuesday, 18 September 2012, at 1821 MST, 95°F. The sky was mostly clear but there were some clouds low along most of the horizon. At 1827 MST, viewed the crescent moon at 77X in the 8" LX200-ACF. I then began setting up for D7000 DSLR prime focus imaging of the moon using the visual back. At 1833 MST, captured this image:


I then took this next photograph using the iPhone 4. The crescent phase moon is clearly seen in the sky and the moon is being imaged on the D7000 DSLR screen at prime focus of the 8" telescope.


By 1855 MST, clouds that had been low in the eastern sky were now covering much of the eastern sky up to about 45° above the horizon. I started to suspect that this could be a short session in the observatory.

I removed the D7000 from the telescope and at 1921 MST, I took this next photograph of the sky. The camera was handheld but rested on the POD wall. The exposure is f/3.5, 1 second, ISO 1600, 18mm. The following are visible in the photo: moon and some earthshine, Saturn just above the trees to the right of the moon, and Mars left of the moon just above the tree. The star Antares and the head of Scorpius are at the left above the tree. Arcturus is the bright star in the top right corner. Some clouds are visible along the horizon at the left and below the moon.


I then began closing up for the night due to the clouds that were now over much of the sky.

The observatory was closed at 1929 MST, 80°F.

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