Cassiopeia Observatory logo

Clouds, Jupiter, ISS over Observatory

Posted: 21 July 2019

As everyone knows, 20 July 2019, was the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11 landing on the Moon. 50 years ago we didn't have DVD players, laser disc players, or home VCRs, but we did have record players. I got this in 1969 a few months after the first human landing on the Moon. The Time-Life records have some amazing audio recordings of space exploration history.


With Monsoon storms predicted for the next several days, I decided to open the observatory Saturday evening, 20 July 2019, even though clouds had appeared in the southwestern sky as sunset approached.

Open: Saturday, 20 July 2019, 1909 MST
Temperature: 94°F
Session: 1370
Conditions: Mostly clear

Equipment Used:
12" f/8 LX600 w/StarLock
2" 24mm UWA eyepiece
1.25" 15mm eyepiece
2" 2X Powermate

iPhone 8 Plus

By the time I had opened the observatory the clouds in the southwestern sky were increasing.

1926 MST: LX600 ON, StarLock OFF, High Precision OFF.

Viewed the planet Jupiter, 102X. Three moons were currently visible. A transit of the moon Io had just ended but its shadow was still visible on the planet's disk. The fainter moon Callisto was not yet visible against the bright sky.

1932 MST: sunset.

Clouds in the southwestern sky (D850 DSLR):


1939 MST: Callisto was now easily seen, 102X.

Viewed Jupiter, 325X. The view was good at times but the clouds were getting closer to the planet.

Took this handheld iPhone 8 Plus afocal photo 325X using NightCap Camera (ISO 640, 1/800sec):


The moon Io is near the righthand limb of Jupiter and its shadow is visible on the planet's disk near the righthand limb. The moon Ganymede is visible to the right of Io.

1946 MST: clouds were getting close to Jupiter, as seen in this D850 DSLR photo:


1950 MST: seeing at Jupiter was getting worse due to the clouds. No tests of the ZWO ADC this night.

2000 MST: Jupiter was now in the clouds. The Io shadow transit was close to ending. Saturn had just risen above the hill to the southeast but the clouds were nearly at the planet.

2010 MST: watched the International Space Station (ISS) cross low over the observatory in the northern sky. Took this handheld D850 DSLR photo (f/2.8, 1/20sec, ISO 1600, FL 50mm):


2014 MST: the clouds were now in the southern half of the sky and moving northward. Decided to end the session.

2018 MST: LX600 OFF.

Close: Saturday, 20 July 2019, 2031 MST
Temperature: 86°F
Session Length: 1h 22m
Conditions: Partly cloudy

Comments are welcome using Email. Twitter users can use the button below to tweet this report to their followers. Thanks.

Previous report

Cassiopeia Observatory Home Page

Back to Top

Copyright ©2019 Michael L. Weasner /