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Visitor, Another Good ISS Image

Posted: 24 June 2014

Opened: Monday, 23 June 2014, 1928 MST
Temperature: 95°F
Session: 698
Conditions: Clear, slight breeze

1936 MST: viewed Jupiter, 83X. No moons visible. 1939 MST: sunset. I then noticed a visitor in the observatory. Not exactly certain what's going on here:


Next, updated the ISS TLE for the night's pass. This was to be another excellent pass, but would pass near the North Celestial Pole which usually causes the AutoStar tracking to go berserk.

1945 MST: quick look at Mars, 83X and 222X. At 222X the North Polar Cap and some dark areas were visible. Then slewed to Saturn for a quick look at 222X. The view was excellent. Cassini Division was very distinct.

I then began preparing for the ISS pass. Mounted the D7000 DSLR at the 8"LX200-ACF prime focus + 2X PowerMate. Focused on Saturn and locked the telescope focus. Checked the finderscope alignment; OK. 1900 MST: ready for the pass to start at 2012 MST. Initial pointing was good and tracking for the first third of the pass was pretty good, although the ISS was still a long distance away. As expected, the middle third (closest line-of-sight) tracking was bad and no images were captured. In fact, at one point I even lost the ISS in the finderscope. I finally got it back in the finderscope for the last third of the pass, and that's where my best images were captured. Here are two images from near the beginning of the final third of the pass, exposure 1/1250sec, ISO 4000:


2024 MST: last look at Saturn, 83X. Four moons were visible.

Began closing up due to an early appointment the next day.

Closed: Monday, 23 June 2014, 2034 MST
Temperature: 82°F

New photos have been added to the Oracle State Park "Live Music and Star Party" report.

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