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Fisheye Lens Sky, More Jupiter Video Tests, Full Moon

Posted: 16 January 2014

Opened: Wednesday, 15 January 2014, 1809 MST
Temperature: 63°F
Session: 646
Conditions: Clear, calm

At 1816 MST, viewed Jupiter low in the east, 83X. Seeing was better this night. The four Galilean Moons were visible. At 1817 MST, the nearly Full Moon was rising over the hill to the east. It would be precisely full at 2152 MST. At 1821 MST, viewed the moon, still very low in the sky, 83X. A very slight terminator was visible. At 1830 MST, returned to Jupiter and viewed it at 222X. The moon Europa was approaching the planet's disk. It would start a transit at 1900 MST, with its shadow beginning to transit at 1930 MST.

I stepped outside of the observatory and began taking fisheye lens photographs of the sky using the D7000 DSLR with 8mm 180° lens on a tripod. This photo, taken at 1849 MST, f/16, 30 seconds, ISO 3200, shows the observatory, the nearly full moon, Jupiter (just above the moon), and the prominent constellations of Auriga, Gemini, and Orion (above the moon):

Click or tap photo to see a larger version (1.3 MB)

I resumed Jupiter observing at 1855 MST using 222X. I watched the Europa transit start, with ingress fully completed at 1905 MST. Unfortunately, seeing had deteriorated somewhat. I continued to monitor Europa as it passed along the southern edge of the South Equatorial Belt. At 1927 MST, Europa was getting difficult to see as its brightness was being overwhelmed by the planet's brightness. At 1934 MST, Europa's shadow was now visible, 222X, but Europa itself was no longer visible. The poor seeing was not helping. At 1944 MST, seeing had improved a little bit and both Europa and its shadow were visible using 222X.

Beginning at 1948 MST, I began preparing for Jupiter video recording tests. I switched to a 1.25" 9mm eyepiece + 2X PowerMate (yielding 444X) and added my homemade iPhone afocal adapter. I used the star Betelgeuse for a focus test with the Bahtinov Mask. I began doing iPhone 5s slo-mo (120 fps) video recordings of Jupiter, afocal 444X, at 1959 MST. The earbuds/mic control was used a remote shutter release. During post-processing I used Keith's Image Stacker to stack 3493 frames from one iPhone 30 second video for this image which shows Europa's shadow:


I then switched from the iPhone to the D7000 DSLR using eyepiece projection (444X) and after doing a focus test on Betelgeuse, did a series of HD video recordings at various exposure settings. Keith's Image Stacker was used to stack 588 frames from a 1/30sec, ISO 5000, HD video, for this image which shows the shadow had moved:


I then did a video using the Vine app on the iPhone showing Jupiter as it appeared on the D7000 DSLR "Live View" screen. The video was posted to Twitter. You can see the 6 second video by clicking on the image below:


At 2042 MST, I resumed Jupiter observing, 222X. Seeing was still not very good. Europa was not visible but its shadow was easily seen approaching the central meridian.

I slewed to the moon at 2052 MST, one hour before Full, and viewed it at 222X. A very slight terminator was still visible.

Then returned to Jupiter. At 2110 MST, the Great Red Spot was just rotating into view. Europa's shadow was just past the central meridian. At 2116 MST, I could just detect the moon Europa in transit as it approached the Jovian limb.

At 2122 MST, I began preparing to photograph the Full Moon through the 8" LX200-ACF telescope, and so ended Jupiter observing. I needed to add the f/6.3 focal reducer in order to capture the entire lunar disk using the D7000 DSLR at prime focus + visual back. At 2152 MST, with the moon precisely full, I took this photo, 1/640sec, ISO 100:

Click or tap on image to see a larger version (1 MB)

I removed the D7000 DSLR and switched to the 2" 24mm UWA eyepiece (83X, without focal reducer) and handheld the iPhone 5s over the eyepiece for this afocal photo:


I then took a final look at the full moon, 83X, and began closing up for the night.

Closed: Wednesday, 15 January 2014, 2220 MST
Temperature: 53°F

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