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ETX-105/LXD55 GEM, iPhone Moon,
ISS and Venus-Saturn Conjunction

Posted: 12 December 2019

Wednesday, 11 December 2019, began overcast but mostly cleared by mid-afternoon.

Open: Wednesday, 11 December 2019, 1803 MST
Temperature: 53°F
Session: 1412
Conditions: Mostly clear

1.25" 26mm eyepiece

iPhone 11 Pro Max

After arriving at the observatory I took this iPhone 11 Pro Max photo of the southwestern sky showing the planets Venus and Saturn. It was taken with the Camera app (Night Mode), handheld.


I set up the Meade ETX-105 (received in 2005) on the LXD55 GEM (received in 2002) on the observatory patio.


1825 MST: LXD55 ON.

Viewed Saturn, 57X. The Ring system was nicely visible. Then viewed Venus, 57X. A slight gibbous phase was visible. Viewed the Moon, 57X. The Moon phase was about 5 hours before exactly Full.

I attached the iPhone to a 26mm eyepiece using the Meade Smartphone Adapter. Took the following afocal 57X photo of the Moon using the iOS app NightCap Camera (ISO 32, 1/3100sec, 1X lens). I used the Phone Skope Shutter Remote as a Bluetooth remote shutter release.


I switched to the 2X lens for this afocal 57X photo of the Moon with NightCap Camera (ISO 21, 1/120sec, 2X lens).


I removed the iPhone and adapter and did some more Moon observing, 57X.

The clouds were increasing by this time.

1858 MST: LXD55 OFF.

1904 MST: saw the International Space Station near Venus and Saturn in the southwestern sky. Grabbed this quick handheld iPhone 11 Pro Max photo (Night Mode) showing a slight trail of the bright ISS (at the left), the planets at the right, and moonlit clouds.

Mouseover or tap on image
Mouseover or tap on image

Close: Wednesday, 11 December 2019, 1910 MST
Temperature: 48°F
Session Length: 1h 07m
Conditions: Mostly cloudy

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