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Oracle State Park visit,
Sirius on Dome

Posted: 2 March 2022

Saturday, 26 September 2022, was clear. I spent the day with Scott Roberts, President of Explore Scientific, at Oracle State Park, the site of the "David H. Levy Arizona Dark Sky Star Party" 21-25 September 2022. He learned how the Park and the community of Oracle will support this exciting event. That night we returned to the Park to let Scott check out the dark night sky. Shortly after the end of Astronomical Twilight the SQM reading at one location at the Park was 21.21.


Scott discussed his visit to Oracle and showed a short video on the Explore Alliance Live show on Tuesday, 1 March. The discussion starts at 8m15s.

Click to view video

Sunday, 27 February, was cloudy. Cloudy skies continued until Tuesday, 1 March.

Open: Tuesday, 1 March 2022, 2017 MST
Temperature: 64°F
Session: 1727
Conditions: Clear

12" f/8 LX600 w/StarLock
2" 24mm UWA eyepiece
2" 14mm 100° eyepiece
2" 9mm 100° eyepiece
2" 2X Powermate
2" 50mm eyepiece


2022 MST: LX600 ON, StarLock OFF, High Precision OFF.

Slewed to Sirius, the second brightest star in the sky. (The Sun is the brightest star in our sky.) I then projected Sirius onto the observatory dome using the 24mm eyepiece.

This is Sirius on the dome taken with the D850 DSLR (f/2.8, 30 seconds, ISO 800, FL 50mm).

Mouseover or tap on image
Mouseover or tap on image for label

I have photographed other celestial objects projected onto the observatory. See my Observatory photo album.

I then viewed Sirius, 102X, 174X, 271X, and 542X. I attempted to view Sirius B (the "Pup Star"), but was unsuccessful.

Slewed to the Horsehead Nebula (IC434) and attempted to see the horse head shape, 102X and 49X. Saw lots of faint nebulosity, but no horse head.

2111 MST: LX600 OFF.

2119 MST: Took a Sky Quality reading and reported the result to the Globe at Night.

Close: Tuesday, 1 March 2022, 2125 MST
Temperature: 59°F
Session Length: 1h 08m
Conditions: Clear, SQM 21.01

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