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Mt Lemmon Observatory Dome from Cassiopeia Observatory;
iPhone Moon

Posted: 20 January 2019

Open: Saturday, 19 January 2019, 1718 MST
Temperature: 71°F
Session: 1326
Conditions: Partly cloudy

Equipment Used:
12" f/8 LX600 w/StarLock
2" 24mm UWA eyepiece
2" 30mm eyepiece

iPhone 8 Plus

I opened the observatory before sunset to due some maintenance on the 12" telescope. The clouds would not be a problem for what I wanted to do.

1723 MST: LX600 ON, StarLock OFF, High Precision OFF.

I set the AutoStar Targets to Terrestrial and aimed the telescope at Mount Lemmon 11 miles to the south of Cassiopeia Observatory. Using the 12mm reticle eyepiece (203X) I panned along the ridge of the mountain until I found a suitable target to do a TRAIN DRIVES. I located one of the domes at Mt Lemmon Observatory and used that.

After succcessfully completing the TRAIN DRIVES I switched to the 2" 30mm eyepiece (81X). I mounted the iPhone 8 Plus on the eyepiece and took this afocal 81X photo using NightCap Camera:


The view is not very clear due to the distance, low viewing angle, and trees near Cassiopeia Observatory, but the dome is visible at the center. Click the photo below on the left to see another view of Mt Lemmon Observatory, taken from a slightly different location near my observatory using a telephoto lens. The photo on the right shows Kitt Peak National Observatory, 65 miles from Cassiopeia Observatory, also taken with a telephoto lens. Both photos were taken during the daytime.

photo photo
Click or tap on images for larger version

1741 MST: set the AutoStar Targets to Sidereal and viewed the Moon, one day before Full, 81X, through some thin clouds.

Mounted the iPhone on the eyepiece for this afocal 81X photo taken with NightCap Camera (ISO 22, 1/3200sec):


1744 MST: sunset.

1748 MST: a view of the western sky taken with the iPhone:


1751 MST: the view towards the east with the Moon and observatory:


1758 MST: viewed Mars, 81X, through thin clouds. No details were visible but its gibbous phase was obvious.

1800 MST: LX600 OFF.

Close: Saturday, 19 January 2019, 1808 MST
Temperature: 61°F
Session Length: 0h 50m
Conditions: Mostly cloudy

The current forecast for Sunday night, 20 January, has an overcast sky. If that holds I won't get to observe the Total Lunar Eclipse.

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