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Jupiter Saturn Conjunction

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3 years 5 months ago #109838 by flt158
Replied by flt158 on topic Jupiter Saturn Conjunction

JohnONeill wrote: Hi,
"Great to see so many observers following the conjunction.

Here in Massachusetts Saturday & Sunday were cloudy. Monday (the day of closest separation) was looking no better, but then the sky miraculously cleared. (A real miracle Aubrey!).

It was a striking sight to the naked eye. Separation was just 6.2'. Also good in 12x36 IS binoculars.
I used my 50 mm refractor visually and the 70 mm refractor for imaging. No chance to get the observatory scope to see that low. Also did imaging with a normal lens.

Please see my website www.variablestarnights.net for images."

It's great to hear from you, John. Your images are truly splendid on your website of the Jupiter - Saturn conjunction. Thank you for letting us in on them. And you are always most welcome to record your future observations here on www.irishastronomy.org   

I should have also said in my report that we all could see the 2 planets with our own eyes from the Sugarloaf car park - even though we had a mischievous cloud trying its best to disturb our viewings.

And one last thing: it is going to be very interesting as to what our favourite observations for 2020 are going to be. Wha-hay!!

Aubrey.     

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3 years 5 months ago #109844 by Until_then-Goodnight!
Replied by Until_then-Goodnight! on topic Jupiter Saturn Conjunction

flt158 wrote: Hello, everyone.

I start out by giving Michael a massive thank you for getting us out to the Sugarloaf car park on a freezing cold +1 degree Celsius on a Sunday early evening to see the very grand Jupiter - Saturn conjunction on the 20th December 2020. There was a 20 km wind occurring. I had 6 layers of clothes on, but I was still shivering after half an hour. But never mind. I had 3 hot Blackcurrant drinks when I got home.

It was super to meet up with Michael, Christian, Darren and Ben for the Great Event!

My wife Valerie joined me as we drove out with little traffic. There was minimal hassle with late Christmas shoppers.

I set up my Williams Optics 158 mm f/7 apochromatic refractor on its Berlebach Planet altazimuth mount and its William Optics 70 mm f/6 attached. Mirror diagonals were fitted to both scopes.

Using Guide 9.1 DVD I have worked out today Monday that the 2 planets, edge to edge, were a mere 6 arc minutes apart on Sunday evening. Wow!

Through my main scope, at 112X, we could see Europa and Io, whose magnitudes were 5.9 and 6.1 respectively, very close to the western side of Jupiter. I could just about see the North Equatorial Belt in the shimmering conditions. I never saw the South Equatorial Belt at all. But the sky conditions were making Jupiter noticeably blurred. It was a great delight to see 5.5 mag Ganymede and 6.7 mag Callisto spaced apart. A 7.5 mag field star, which everyone is calling HD 191250 on Cloudy Nights, was east of Callisto. It was plain to see through the telescope. Saturn looked beautiful as ever with its rings. At no time could I see the Cassini Division or its largest moon Titan. But I don't mind that at all.

Besides how rare it is to see the Solar System's 2 largest planets separated by 6'! They haven't been this close since 1623 after all.

For the record: Jupiter's magnitude was -2.0. Saturn's mag was +0.6. Jupiter's distance was a little over 885,288,000 kms from Earth. Saturn was some 1,618,388,000 kms away. Jupiter's angular diameter was 33.3". Saturn's was 15.3".

As some of you know, I am a man of prayer. Therefore I do thank my heavenly Father for allowing me to see the very Great Jupiter - Saturn conjunction of 2020. Praise the Lord!

Let me finish by wishing you all here on www.isrishastronomy.org a very Happy and Safe Christmas for 2020, and of course clear skies before December 31st!!

Aubrey.

P.S, I do hope that corona virus vaccine is coming soon.


Hello Aubrey, 

You've captured the conjunction wonderfully. Many thanks for naming the star that looked like 5th Jupiter Moon through the eyepiece. 

It was great to meet Valerie, and I hope the both of you have a nice Christmas. 

Happy Christmas and wishing you many a clear night for 2021.

Darren. 
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