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Thread: The angry red planet mars seen

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    Default The angry red planet mars seen



    Tonight I like report a updated on mars.
    In spite of the lights here my telescope found mars again but now I have seen
    stars inline with Mars I think the stars are Mars's moons
    Just to make sure I look where Mars is did see the extra stars near Mars with my eyes
    Soon my telescope found the moons also.
    The color of this planet is reddish yellow, there no glare
    from the planet.

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    Default Re: The angry red planet mars seen

    I'm not so sure you saw the moons of Mars.

    Phobos, the brighter at magnitude 14.3 is rather tucked in behind the planet presently. Deimos, the dimmer at mag 15.4 is a tough sell without large aperture. And as bright as the Moon is presently, that makes things even more difficult.

    Most likely you have spied background stars.

    Congrats on a good view of the Red Planet.
    Bryan

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    Default Re: The angry red planet mars seen

    The moons might be some where else by the planet.
    Yet with the lights here wipe out some stars.

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    Default Re: The angry red planet mars seen

    Though I differ with Bryan on the magnitudes of Phobos and Deimos, I totally agree about the difficulty of truly observing these. It can be challenging in an 18 inch. I have seen it said they might be possible (but extremely difficult) in a 6 inch, while some indicate one needs at least a 10 inch. Its not so much their magnitude, which as you can see below is not so dim per se, but more about their angular separation from Mars and dealing with the glare of Mars. I highly recommend one make an occulting bar to block out Mars.

    What you saw were general field stars. One has to be extremely careful about such observations as the moons appear merely as stars. So care must be taken to ascertain the moons' position at the time of observation relative to the planet and nearby stars of similar magnitude. Using a planetarium program can help one out in that regard. The thing to remember is that every aperture has its limits, not only in magnitude, but also resolution. With your current aperture it would not be possible to see these moons. Field stars are everywhere, and can often confuse the beginner into believing they've seen a planetary moon when in fact they have not. At the below link you can find some information not only on the Martian moons but others in the solar system. Below that is the data for Phobos and Deimos for the most recent Martian opposition as extracted from that page.

    Moonspotting-A Guide to Observing the Moons of the Solar System - Universe Today

    Mars- The two tiny moons of Mars are a challenge, as it’s only possible to nab them visually near opposition, which occurs about once every 26 months. Mars next reaches opposition on May 22nd, 2016.

    Phobos:
    Magnitude: +11.3
    Orbital period: 7 hours 39 minutes
    Maximum separation: 16”

    Deimos:
    Magnitude: +12.3
    Orbital period: 1 day 6 hours and 20 minutes
    Maximum separation: 54”

    The moons of Mars were discovered by American astronomer Asaph Hall during the favorable 1877 opposition of Mars using the 26-inch refracting telescope at the U.S. Naval Observatory.


    Last edited by KT4HX; 09-16-2016 at 09:01 AM.
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    Default Re: The angry red planet mars seen

    Oh so I am a Martian jk lol
    OK , I think if wasn't for these lights I see a lot more.
    Lol some times I wish I was a martian
    Well at least my last name almost spells martian the other a is missing
    Martin is my last name.
    Tonight should be another good night for star gazing
    I will study a more.
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    Default Re: The angry red planet mars seen

    The main thing is to keep getting out there and looking up. Nothing builds experience like time behind the eyepiece. I hope you have a sky atlas or app you are using to help learn the sky. That can make a huge difference in your enjoyment level. Knowledge is power after all.
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    Default Re: The angry red planet mars seen

    I do I star charts on smartphone.
    Meade said my scope can take x3 Barlow lens may be a zoom lens.

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    Default Re: The angry red planet mars seen

    No matter how far you ramp up the 'power' chances are your not going to be able to see Mar's moons.

    Especially since you already mentioned that "the lights here wipe out some stars".

    That's okay very few else can see them either.

    I have a 3x barlow and have used it a couple of times but found it difficult to work with. Better is to get a 'tighter' eyepiece. Don't know what scope your using but maybe a 8mm or 5mm.

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    Default Re: The angry red planet mars seen

    80 mm

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    Default Re: The angry red planet mars seen

    Tonight mars was out the soft light orange glow was still there, and
    according to the stellarium app it was right there.

 

 
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