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iPhone Comet Olbers, DSO Observing

Posted: 1 May 2024

Open: Tuesday, 30 April 2024, 1851 MST
Temperature: 88°F
Session: 1960
Conditions: Clear, breezy

12" f/8 LX600 w/StarLock
2" 24mm UWA eyepiece
2" 30mm eyepiece
2" 14mm 100° eyepiece

iPhone 15 Pro Max

1905 MST: LX600 ON, StarLock OFF, High Precision OFF.

1908 MST: Sunset. Calm now.

1911 MST: Viewed Jupiter, 102X and 81X. The planet was very low in the western sky and viewed through tree branches.

Slewed to Comet 13P/Olbers, but it was not yet visible in the bright twilight sky.

1915-2000 MST: Relaxed on the observatory patio bench to watch the stars come out.

2005 MST: Observatory Wi-Fi ON.

Used SkySafari 7 Pro on the iPhone to GOTO Comet 13P/Olbers.

2012 MST: Wi-Fi OFF.

2016 MST: Viewed the comet, 81X. It was faintly visible as a fuzzy smudge.

Attached the LiDAR Cover to the iPhone 15 Pro Max and mounted the iPhone on the 30mm eyepiece. Began taking some quick exposures to try to get a good exposure with the comet very low in the western sky.

This afocal 81X grainy image shows a satellite trail being distorted by the Earth's atmosphere during the 1 second exposure taken with NightCap Camera (ISO 50000, 1X lens).


This afocal 81X image used Light Boost in NightCap Camera (ISO 12320, 1 second, 1X lens).


2023 MST: StarLock ON.

Unfortunately, the StarLock could not find a guidestar as the comet was now behind a tree near the observatory.

2024 MST: StarLock OFF.

As a break from my recent imaging sessions in the observatory, I decided to do just some observing. I selected the AutoStar Guided Tour "Tonight's Best" and observed the following Deep Sky Objects (DSO), 102X.

Open Star Clusters:
    M38, M36, M37, M35, M41

    NGC3115 (Spindle Galaxy), NGC3377, NGC4261, M51 (Whirlpool Galaxy)

Globular Star Clusters:
    M68, M13 (Great Globular Cluster in Hercules), M92

I then observed M81 (Bode's Galaxy) and M104 (Sombrero Galaxy), 102X. Viewed M104, 174X.

2103 MST: LX600 OFF.

2112 MST: Took a Sky Quality reading and reported the result to Globe at Night.

Close: Tuesday, 30 April 2024, 2114 MST
Temperature: 68°F
Session Length: 2h 23m
Conditions: Clear, SQM 20.99

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