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Observations 20th and 23rd January 2017

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7 months 4 weeks ago #106428 by flt158
flt158 created the topic: Observations 20th and 23rd January 2017
Good evening, all.
Here are some more of my personal observations which I made on Friday 20th and Monday 23rd January.
My scope is a William Optics 158 mm apochromatic refractor with diagonals. As a result my north is mostly up and my east in to the right.

Friday 20th was a night of excellent seeing. It was definitely one of the clearest nights over the past number of months. Monday night was clear too, but the seeing conditions were very poor.
1. I started observing from 4.30 pm; Of course, what other object would I be looking at first only Venus. It is now shooting towards Earth. On this night, it is 93,000,000 kilometres away. So it is getting brighter and bigger. Its magnitude is -4.5. I can even see it in the daytime. At 5 pm, I zoomed in at 280X, and there was very little shimmering even at that power. The planet's cusps were very strong and very much brighter than the rest of the planet. The illuminated phase was 46.6% lit, and the angular diameter was less than 27 arc seconds. The planet is now a very gratifying sight. Its distance today Tuesday less than 90 million kms.
2. I was surprised to find Albireo before it appeared with my unaided eye in my small 2nd apo at 11X. In the main scope at 40X, the 2 components were as usual orange and blue. The B component is straight up from the primary at this time of year; that is opposite to what reflectors see.
3. After observing the carbon star Z Piscium and triple star Psi 1 Piscium, I set out to split once again 36 Andromedae. This very tight double star has a current separation barely over 1.1 arc seconds. The PA is 331 degrees. The magnitudes are +6.1 and +6.5. Because the night was extremely clear, I was amazed to see both components almost split at 167X. However at 225X and 280X, it was plain for me to see a dark gap between A and B. At the end of 2017, I will be looking back with the greatest pleasure the excellent true binary of 36 Andromedae. Medium to large telescopes might give it a try. Valerie and I are very impressed with it.
4. I had one last carbon star to find in Andromeda. It is called ST Andromedae. I describe it as a very dim red star. So dim that I thought I should give it an estimated magnitude on the AAVSO website. So on Monday night, I observed some 10th magnitude stars in the same field of view and thought that ST was +10.1. The star can be quite difficult to find; but its redness is very nice to behold. To find it, I star hopped from M31.
5. Also in the same fov as ST is a nice double star Stf 3028. The separation is 15 arcseconds and the PA is 199 degrees. The magnitudes are 7.1 and 10. At 40X in a 2" 38 mm eyepiece, I can see ST Andromedae and the double very easily. There are plenty of field stars also.

Thank you for reading this report.

Keep looking up!
Aubrey.
The following user(s) said Thank You: michael_murphy, Kinch, Fermidox, mariosi

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7 months 4 weeks ago #106432 by mariosi
mariosi replied the topic: Observations 20th and 23rd January 2017
Aubrey,

Wonderful presentation and very interesting !!

Marios
The following user(s) said Thank You: flt158

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