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Sugarloaf - Friday night 26/05/23?

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8 months 4 weeks ago #111854 by flt158
Sugarloaf - Friday night 26/05/23? was created by flt158
Hello. one and all. 

Is anyone interested in doing some observing in the Sugarloaf car park tomorrow night (26th May)?

But before you give an answer, please check that you can come. 
We don't want last minute cancellations because of the problem of having a car. 
I'm planning on inviting Mick again. 
As you know, he is the current president of the Irish Astronomical Society. 

The Moon and Venus will be observed by yours truly. 
Plus R Leonis which is getting brighter all the time now. 

Clear skies from Aubrey. 

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8 months 4 weeks ago #111856 by Paul-Byrne
Replied by Paul-Byrne on topic Sugarloaf - Friday night 26/05/23?
I will not be around tomorrow night.
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8 months 4 weeks ago #111857 by flt158
Replied by flt158 on topic Sugarloaf - Friday night 26/05/23?
That's okay, Paul. 
And I'm not available on Saturday night. 

Best regards from Aubrey. 

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8 months 4 weeks ago #111858 by michael_murphy
Replied by michael_murphy on topic Sugarloaf - Friday night 26/05/23?
I've had a cold all week and will be taking it easy this weekend.

Michael.
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8 months 4 weeks ago - 8 months 4 weeks ago #111859 by flt158
Replied by flt158 on topic Sugarloaf - Friday night 26/05/23?
It turns out there will be at least 4 of us at the Sugarloaf tonight. 

One imager called Marty M will be joined by Mick McCreary.
Darren and myself will be present to do some observing also. 

We will probably will have some high cloud, but, all in all, we should see some goodies. 

If anyone else wishes to join us, they will be most welcome!

Clear skies from Aubrey.  
Last edit: 8 months 4 weeks ago by flt158.

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8 months 3 weeks ago #111870 by flt158
Replied by flt158 on topic Sugarloaf - Friday night 26/05/23?
Hello all. 

I had a splendid time observing some gems with my William Optics 158mm f/7 apochromatic refractor from the Sugarloaf car park on Saturday night 26th May 2023. The air temperature was 11˚ Celsius and the wind was decreasing to 8 km/h. There were some hazy sky conditions from time to time. These conditions were causing dew to descend on us at a later stage. 
Initially some of us had huge trouble getting down the N11. That’s because there was some terrible car accident before the Kilmacanogue small village. Garda vans were commanding scores of vehicles to leave the N11 at the Bray South junction. Eventually I found myself in the town of Enniskerry. I phoned Darren who was very near, and I followed him to the Sugarloaf. I finally got to do some observing from 22.30 until midnight. Some of us had dew problems including myself. But I had a small cloth to wipe away the dew on my 38mm 2” eyepiece. I use this eyepiece in lieu with my William Optics 70mm f/6 apochromatic refractor. With it I get 6 ˚ fov and 11x. By the way, both scopes have mirror diagonals fitted. 

1. Those of us who receive the Irish Astronomical Society every year from John Flannery would have noticed that the Moon was sitting amongst the stars of the famous Sickle in Leo on this particular night. The almost half Moon’s magnitude was -9.7. Its distance was 400,163 kms from Earth and was 42.8% illuminated. 3 of us saw Earthshine. Mare Serenitatis was in full view. Darren commented that Montes Haemus looked very well on the south side of Mare Serenitatis. South of these mountains I observed the craters Agrippa (46km) and Godin (35km). Back to the mare, Manilius (39km), Menelaus (27km), Sulpicius Gallus (12 km), Bobillier (6.5km), the white spot of Linné, Bessel (16km) and Daubrée (14km). Further south I saw the flooded crater Lade (56km) and Saunder (45km). Very close to the lunar terminator was Pickering (15km), and to its southwest was the eerie sight of Horrocks (30km). You see this latter crater was beyond the terminator. I could fully see its entire rim, but it was surrounded by darkness. Also its interior was in the black too. The astronomer Jeremiah Horrocks was extremely famous because it was he who first observed a transit of Venus crossing the Sun in 1639 with a telescope. Great man! And no! He has nothing to do with the bedtime drink: Horlicks! Ha Ha!

2. I had bits of excitement with regards the brightest planet Venus. It has now reached -4.4 in magnitude. She is getting nearer now, and an illuminated phase is 54.5% - that’s just over half phase. She is getting larger too. On Friday night it was 21.4” wide. When I checked her position for Friday night on my Guide 9.1 DVD I “discovered” there was a 7.9 mag star called SAO 79416 on her western side. On her eastern side there were 2 stars, and one of them was slightly variable carbon star called NQ Geminorum. Generally this star is of 8th magnitude and I could see a reasonably rich orange star. I have observed NQ Gem before. To this west was a K7 class star called SAO 79473. This 8.6 magnitude star was almond brown in colour. I could fit all 4 bodies with my 28mm 2” eyepiece. My true field of view is 2˚. Nice!

3. South and near the Moon I figured where Regulus was. At 40x its companion was easily seen. 

4. And so about 6˚ west I found the variable star R Leonis at 40x. It’s not as bright as the K5 class 5.7 magnitude star 18 Leonis. But R Leo is definitely brighter than the 6.4 mag star 19 Leonis. I’m estimating R Leonis has reached a magnitude of 6.0. I have recorded this magnitude on www.aavso.org . It now means the rose star is at its brightest I have ever seen it. Mick and Darren had a look at it. 

At this stage of the proceedings I had to clean some eyepieces with a soft cloth. It worked without doing any hassle.  

5. Darren encouraged me to find my favourite carbon star of 2023 – S Cephei. After a while I did find it. But what has been going on with this star? It’s much fainter for sure at magnitude +10. But it has lost its strong red colour. In fact I could see very little of its orange colour. I would say S Cep just needs to get brighter again to see it changed back to its original tomato red C7 colour. 

Thank you for reading my latest report. 

Clear skies from Aubrey. 
The following user(s) said Thank You: michael_murphy, Fermidox, Until_then-Goodnight!

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