Last updated: 30 September 2003
Subject: Mars Observation with ETX 125 Sent: Thursday, September 25, 2003 19:53:00 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (dan hester) I have written you before about some of my Mars observations with my ETX 125, but tonight was the Grandest of All! After weeks of bad weather, I noticed tonight (Sept 25) here in Wilmington, North Carolina, that skies were especially clear. Once focused on Mars with a 40mm meade, I added a 2x Barlow. Very Sharp. Wonder what else I can try? I stuck in a 15mm plossel by itself. Perfect resolution. I could see the tiny, almost dead center Southern ice cap. Then skies became clearer still..and lots of surface markings became crystal clear. The planet was crisp and well focused. Then I added the barlow to the 15mm. After a minute of fine focusing, Mars stood out sharp and clean. Finally, I realized some heat waves coming off my roof just below mars...a slight breeze began to blow them away. I got out my 9mm plossel...stuck it in the barlow and couldn't believe my eyes. The planet was huge in the eyepiece! Still Clear, but not perfect. I could make out the ice cap...then surface markings! Much larger and clearer than I had ever seen them before. By11pm, it was time to go... but not before having seen the ETX 125 at its best! I haven't worked out the power with the 9mm and Barlow, but it's somewhere near the 400x mark, i think. It may never happen again, but one thing is for sure...the ETX is fully capable of this power on the right night. Wonder what it would do with some decent eyepieces? Good seeing to all. Dan dan hesterMike here: Magnification was approximately 430X.
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