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Thread: Tiw’s Day Mars Too

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    Shorty Barlow's Avatar
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    Default Tiw’s Day Mars Too



    It was bright and sunny for most of Tuesday. The slightly mendacious BBC ‘pork pie factory’ weather app said it would be clear until around 02:00 Wednesday morning then cloud over. Of course, in the end, it was actually clear until 05:00! I wasn’t quite sure about the pork pie factory’s long term forecast at the time. So I decided to take the goat~fish (of Capricorn) by the horns and have another Mars session. By 19:00 British Summer Time the 150mm TS Optics/GSO Newtonian was set up and cooling on its SW EQ5 mount.



    OK I took these pictures with my Nexus 7 tablet just as the twilight ran out. It ran out bloody fast if you ask me. For all I know the Nexus might actually have a night mode, but it was difficult enough taking these shots with one hand without falling over or dropping it. lol



    It also slowly dawned on me that Mars would reach transit (20:47) at the ‘fantastically’ high altitude of 16°, 30“. This is a bit of a game changer.



    Mars was visible to me over my neighbour’s rooftops by 19:30. The first of three eyepieces to go into into the Baader helical focuser was a 4.5mm ‘SW Planetary II’. I have no idea who manufactures these. I honestly doubt that it’s Barsta (BST), like the other two eyepieces in the picture below.



    This gave me my first (unfiltered) view of Mars at 200x. The overall seeing was around A~II and the transparency was slightly below average. At first Mars ‘boiled away’ a little until it gained enough altitude to stabilise somewhat. I soon threaded the Baader Orange Longpass 570nm filter into the 4.5mm ‘SW’ to reveal some interesting surface detail. The phase was very apparent and the southern polar cap was very distinct. There seemed to be a mass of dark surface features, undoubtedly maria.



    The dark Mare Erythraeum area on the Virtual Planet Atlas screenshot above was quite noticeable. As were the dark features around the Meridiani Planum and Chryse Planitia areas. Although obviously not as distinct as in the screenshot, and much smaller. Either way, there were enough dark albedo features to make the observation interesting.



    I got bolder as Mars rose higher and switched to the 3.2mm StarGuider for 281x. I stayed at this magnification, now using a Baader Contrast Booster filter, until about transit. My thinking was that as I’m not really going to see fine detail I’d try and get as high a magnification as possible. Mars was so high, even after transit, that it cleared the rather tall chimney on my house. For the last part of the session I switched to the 4mm TS Planetary for 225x. I also reverted to the Baader Orange Longpass. This filter really makes Mars look like you’d expect the ‘Red Planet’ to appear in my opinion. It contrasts and reveals dark surface features and yet at the same time seems to impart a sort of dramatic and appealing aesthetic. To my astonishment I was getting quite clear images up until about 22:00. Which is when I decided to pack up and go inside for some hot steak and kidney pudding with chips and gravy. So, a perfect, and possibly slightly gluttonous end to the session.

    Images from SkySafari 6 Pro, Cartes du Ciel & the Virtual Planet Atlas
    TS Optics: 150mm, f/6 Newtonian (GSO SVD series). Altair: Starwave 102ED-R. Sky-Watcher: SkyMax 102mm, SkyMax 127mm, Evostar 72ED DS Pro, Evostar 80ED DS Pro, ST80 (TS Focuser), ST102 (TS Focuser), EQ5 Deluxe, AZ5 Deluxe. Vixen: Porta II, SXG Hal-130. Orion: 90mm StarMax , ST80 (TS Focuser). Celestron: NexStar Evolution 9.25". William Optics: E-BINO-P Binoviewer. A shed load of eyepieces including: Antares, Astro Hutech, Baader, Bresser, BST, Bushnell, Celestron, Explore Scientific, GSO, Kokusai, Meade, Orion, Sky-Watcher, Solomark, SvBony, TeleVue, Vixen & one or two I'm not sure of.

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    helicon64's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tiw’s Day Mars Too

    Nice report Shorty - good job with Mars!
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    Michael
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    Default Re: Tiw’s Day Mars Too

    Quote Originally Posted by helicon64 View Post
    Nice report Shorty - good job with Mars!
    Thanks. I think the altitude it's at at the moment surprised me the most.
    TS Optics: 150mm, f/6 Newtonian (GSO SVD series). Altair: Starwave 102ED-R. Sky-Watcher: SkyMax 102mm, SkyMax 127mm, Evostar 72ED DS Pro, Evostar 80ED DS Pro, ST80 (TS Focuser), ST102 (TS Focuser), EQ5 Deluxe, AZ5 Deluxe. Vixen: Porta II, SXG Hal-130. Orion: 90mm StarMax , ST80 (TS Focuser). Celestron: NexStar Evolution 9.25". William Optics: E-BINO-P Binoviewer. A shed load of eyepieces including: Antares, Astro Hutech, Baader, Bresser, BST, Bushnell, Celestron, Explore Scientific, GSO, Kokusai, Meade, Orion, Sky-Watcher, Solomark, SvBony, TeleVue, Vixen & one or two I'm not sure of.

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    Default Re: Tiw’s Day Mars Too

    Nice Mars session SB! I also enjoy using orange and red filters on Mars. They highlight dark details, cut glare and the tint seems to be appropriate for Mars.
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    Default Re: Tiw’s Day Mars Too

    Quote Originally Posted by Bigzmey View Post
    Nice Mars session SB! I also enjoy using orange and red filters on Mars. They highlight dark details, cut glare and the tint seems to be appropriate for Mars.
    Thanks. I've always used yellow and yellow-green filters, with light blue for the polar caps on Mars. But with smaller apertures red and orange filters don't always have the transmission percentage. The Baader Orange Longpass 570nm filter works well on a 150mm reflector.
    Bigzmey likes this.
    TS Optics: 150mm, f/6 Newtonian (GSO SVD series). Altair: Starwave 102ED-R. Sky-Watcher: SkyMax 102mm, SkyMax 127mm, Evostar 72ED DS Pro, Evostar 80ED DS Pro, ST80 (TS Focuser), ST102 (TS Focuser), EQ5 Deluxe, AZ5 Deluxe. Vixen: Porta II, SXG Hal-130. Orion: 90mm StarMax , ST80 (TS Focuser). Celestron: NexStar Evolution 9.25". William Optics: E-BINO-P Binoviewer. A shed load of eyepieces including: Antares, Astro Hutech, Baader, Bresser, BST, Bushnell, Celestron, Explore Scientific, GSO, Kokusai, Meade, Orion, Sky-Watcher, Solomark, SvBony, TeleVue, Vixen & one or two I'm not sure of.

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    Default Re: Tiw’s Day Mars Too

    Nice Mars session with a lot of details!
    Thanks!



    Is it possible that the images you mentioned are not shown? At least I don't see them.
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    Default Re: Tiw’s Day Mars Too

    Quote Originally Posted by John Baars View Post
    Nice Mars session with a lot of details!
    Thanks!



    Is it possible that the images you mentioned are not shown? At least I don't see them.
    I don't see them to.

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    Default Re: Tiw’s Day Mars Too

    Quote Originally Posted by John Baars View Post
    Nice Mars session with a lot of details!
    Thanks!
    You're welcome.

    Quote Originally Posted by John Baars View Post
    Is it possible that the images you mentioned are not shown? At least I don't see them.
    Well, I can see them on my ChromeBook.

    Screenshot 2018-10-10 at 22.45.03.png

    Are you running Vista? lol
    TS Optics: 150mm, f/6 Newtonian (GSO SVD series). Altair: Starwave 102ED-R. Sky-Watcher: SkyMax 102mm, SkyMax 127mm, Evostar 72ED DS Pro, Evostar 80ED DS Pro, ST80 (TS Focuser), ST102 (TS Focuser), EQ5 Deluxe, AZ5 Deluxe. Vixen: Porta II, SXG Hal-130. Orion: 90mm StarMax , ST80 (TS Focuser). Celestron: NexStar Evolution 9.25". William Optics: E-BINO-P Binoviewer. A shed load of eyepieces including: Antares, Astro Hutech, Baader, Bresser, BST, Bushnell, Celestron, Explore Scientific, GSO, Kokusai, Meade, Orion, Sky-Watcher, Solomark, SvBony, TeleVue, Vixen & one or two I'm not sure of.

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    Shorty Barlow's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tiw’s Day Mars Too

    Quote Originally Posted by Bigzmey View Post
    I don't see them to.
    I've had this before. I have no explanation as to why the images don't show. I'll try and post them as thumbnails when I fire up my Win 7 desktop. Watch this space!
    TS Optics: 150mm, f/6 Newtonian (GSO SVD series). Altair: Starwave 102ED-R. Sky-Watcher: SkyMax 102mm, SkyMax 127mm, Evostar 72ED DS Pro, Evostar 80ED DS Pro, ST80 (TS Focuser), ST102 (TS Focuser), EQ5 Deluxe, AZ5 Deluxe. Vixen: Porta II, SXG Hal-130. Orion: 90mm StarMax , ST80 (TS Focuser). Celestron: NexStar Evolution 9.25". William Optics: E-BINO-P Binoviewer. A shed load of eyepieces including: Antares, Astro Hutech, Baader, Bresser, BST, Bushnell, Celestron, Explore Scientific, GSO, Kokusai, Meade, Orion, Sky-Watcher, Solomark, SvBony, TeleVue, Vixen & one or two I'm not sure of.

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    Default Re: Tiw’s Day Mars Too

    TS Optics: 150mm, f/6 Newtonian (GSO SVD series). Altair: Starwave 102ED-R. Sky-Watcher: SkyMax 102mm, SkyMax 127mm, Evostar 72ED DS Pro, Evostar 80ED DS Pro, ST80 (TS Focuser), ST102 (TS Focuser), EQ5 Deluxe, AZ5 Deluxe. Vixen: Porta II, SXG Hal-130. Orion: 90mm StarMax , ST80 (TS Focuser). Celestron: NexStar Evolution 9.25". William Optics: E-BINO-P Binoviewer. A shed load of eyepieces including: Antares, Astro Hutech, Baader, Bresser, BST, Bushnell, Celestron, Explore Scientific, GSO, Kokusai, Meade, Orion, Sky-Watcher, Solomark, SvBony, TeleVue, Vixen & one or two I'm not sure of.

 

 
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