Crescent Venus, Waxing Gibbous Moon
Posted: 15 December 2013
Cassiopeia Observatory was opened on Saturday, 14 December, at 1626 MST, 65°F. The sky was clear, with some clouds low in the southwest. At 1631 MST, viewed Venus, 83X. Its crescent phase appeared very nicely as seeing was much better this time than on the previous session.
I did some eyepiece projection imaging at 222X using the D7000 DSLR. I did both still and HD video recordings at various exposure settings. This is a cropped image from one HD video frame, 1/320sec, ISO 3200:
The sky appears black in the image above due to the exposure setting. This cropped frame from an iPhone 5s video recording taken afocally (handheld) at 444X at 1649 MST shows the actual sky color 29 minutes before sunset:
At 1700 MST, I took a final look at Venus, 83X. Then slewed the 8" LX200-ACF to the waxing gibbous moon, still somewhat low in the eastern sky. Although there was some atmospheric distortion, the view at 83X was good. Two minutes later, while moving around inside the observatory, I happened to see some Javelina (wild pigs; a protected species in Arizona) pass by to the south of the observatory. Saw six of them. Sunset occuried at 1718 MST.
This full-frame image of the moon at prime focus + focal reducer, 1/125sec, ISO 100, taken at 1719 MST, shows the blue sky that was visible around the moon:
This iPhone 5s photo shows a live view of the moon on the D7000 DSLR as seen through the 8" telescope:
This cropped image of the moon, prime focus + focal reducer, was taken at 1742 MST, 1/200sec, ISO 100:
I resumed lunar observing at 1748 MST using 222X. Seeing was not very good now even though the moon was a little higher in the sky. I took a last look at the moon, 83X, at 1757 MST, and then began closing up the observatory.
The observatory was closed at 1808 MST, 49°F.
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