Tuesday, 4AM, 5 Jan 2016, Comet Catalina

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Apollo XX
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Re: Tuesday, 4AM, 5 Jan 2016, Comet Catalina

Unread post by Apollo XX » Tue Jan 05, 2016 9:30 am

Having ignored the opportunity to have another look at Catalina when nature called at 4:30am this morning, I decided to give it a quick try at a few minutes past 6am when I was faced with no choice but to get out of the bed and stay out of it. By this time the sky was far too light for comet diddling, and efforts with both the 10x50's and 20x80's netted nothing but some stars set in a grey/blue background. Jupiter was blazing bright though, and again it was too light for the Galilean moons to show up in the 10x50's, but they were clearly visible in the 20x80's. Then there was the moon, rising in its 21% waning crescent phase, the crater Copernicus was highlighted along the terminator and the earthshine effect over the dark side was simply gorgeous.
Mike M.
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Re: Tuesday, 4AM, 5 Jan 2016, Comet Catalina

Unread post by Bruce D » Tue Jan 05, 2016 10:03 am

Nice report Mike- a bit nippy this morning?
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Re: Tuesday, 4AM, 5 Jan 2016, Comet Catalina

Unread post by Bruce D » Tue Jan 05, 2016 2:00 pm

nuh huh... sorry to disappoint-!
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Re: Tuesday, 4AM, 5 Jan 2016, Comet Catalina

Unread post by Apollo XX » Wed Jan 06, 2016 6:19 am

Wednesday, Jan6, 5am: Out to see Catalina again, nice fuzzy patch in the 20x80's, but using them handheld things deteriorated rather quickly and I'm not getting the mount out - too much work for a short session. Got the 10x50's and played around with them for a bit, then breathed on the eye lenses. Ever do that? Doh! "Geez it just clouded up bad" :roll: Went and got the 4" refractor - the long one with no finder aids on it, just because I like an early morning challenge. :| Working at 42x it took a while to find Catalina, but once I did the view was nice. In 4 inches of glass it's bright, fuzzy, got a core and takes on an irregular shape. Nice. Watched it for awhile.

BONUS! Something bright tearing across the sky out of the southwest! NICE! A happenstance super bright ISS pass and it's heading straight for Bootes. Of course I was watching it through the 10x50's when I realized that, and bounded (well probably more like stumbled) back to the eyepiece of the scope in hopes of catching it and Catalina in the same FOV. If it happened I didn't see it, so it was back to the binos for the remainder of the pass. It's fun watching it though the binos because it really adds a sensation of speed to the experience. Consulting Heavens Above afterward, I confirmed the "super bright" descriptive used earlier, with it being listed as -3.1 magnitude. http://www.heavens-above.com/passdetail ... 847&type=V

Done with Catalina for today, I spun the scope around to Jupiter and cranked the mag up to 160x. It's always nice to explore the Jovian system, even when there are no special phenomena occurring like GRS transits, moon transits, shadows, etc. It was plain-Jane today, but still fun.

In and done at 5:40am, 12 degrees out, and happy to be in the heated house. It was a beautiful morning.
Mike M.
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Re: Tuesday, 4AM, 5 Jan 2016, Comet Catalina

Unread post by Bruce D » Wed Jan 06, 2016 7:24 am

5:40 AM... observed back side of eyelids. View unremarkable, but enjoyable just the same... :lol:
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Re: Tuesday, 4AM, 5 Jan 2016, Comet Catalina

Unread post by Apollo XX » Wed Jan 06, 2016 8:04 am

ASSNE Prime wrote:5:40 AM... observed back side of eyelids. View unremarkable, but enjoyable just the same... :lol:
:lol: Any way you did it...https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cJqjlFGZxtE
Mike M.
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