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Uranus with the naked eye

  • johnflannery
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Uranus with the naked eye was created by johnflannery

hi folks,

succeeded in spotting Uranus with the naked eye last night. It wasn't until I got home and compared the field I was looking at that I could say it was a positive sighting.

the planet is just a few days past opposition (which it reached August 24th) and is magnitude 5.7). It within a lop-sided box of stars composed of iota, 38, 39 and 42 Aquarii.

I could see all four with 39 Aqr being the faintest at magnitude 6.05 (Sky Map Pro v.6) The planet itself is about half a degree below 38 Aqr.

it's a feat I've managed before from Zimbabwe in 2001 when the planet was much higher in the sky. I never thought it would be possible to do so from here at the moment with Aquarius being low.

tonight might be clear again so why not see if you can spot this far-flung world without optical aid. I wear corrective lenses so it's not a requirement to have eagle-eyes ... just perseverence.

draw the star field you see first before checking the planet's true position.

best of luck!

P.S. ... don't ignore sweeping the wonderful star fields and M-objects with binoculars if you are out just after dark. Some great views way down in the "deep south" at the moment with M22 and the Lagoon, Trifid, and Swan nebulae.

John F.
South Dublin Astro. Soc.
John Flannery ( aurorawatcher - at * gmail - dot * com ... remove hyphens/asterisks/spaces for email)
The chicken's motive for crossing the road would not be questioned in an ideal world
19 years 4 months ago #557

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Replied by Paul Tipper on topic Uranus

Haven't yet managed to see Uranus with the naked eye, but I did catch my first view of the planet last Friday night through my 80mm refractor. Viewed at x133, the planet appeared as a tiny but discernable pale-green disk - a lovely sight. I was well pleased, as I'd tried several times previously to locate the planet without success. That leaves me only 2 remaining planets - Neptune and Pluto.

I'll try to locate Uranus with the naked eye the next time I'm out a decent dark sky.
Paul Tipper,
South Dublin Astro. Soc.
19 years 4 months ago #564

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Replied by albertw on topic Re: Uranus

I couldnt see it with the naked eye. I could only just make out the guide star I was using to locate it (Aqr 38) at mag 5.46 last Wednesday night from Djouce. I could just make out the disk of uranus at 158x. It was also my first time to see it.

With that success I tried to get neptune. Its a lot fainter at mag 7.8. But armed with a star map was able to work out the point that shouldnt be there! No trace of a disk.

I was very happy to have for the first time seen the two planets, and especially on the night of the Mars opposition.

Cheers,
~Al
Albert White MSc FRAS
Chairperson, International Dark Sky Association - Irish Section
www.darksky.ie/
19 years 4 months ago #569

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Replied by spculleton on topic Re: Uranus with the naked eye

I checked both Uranus and Neptune off the list this summer, but neither with the naked eye. I found Uranus quite easily through a heavily light-polluted southern horizon. The big difficulty with it I found was checking off the star-like objects I could see through the finder and eventually finding this tiny litlle greenish disk. Neptune was even tougher and barely showed a disk if at all. In fact I'm still not totally 100% sure that I actually did see Neptune. It was just above starlike in its size and was a blue-grey colour, almost like slate.
Just one difficult little bugger to go!
Shane Culleton.

Dozo Yoroshiku Onegai Shimasu
19 years 4 months ago #571

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Replied by Paul Tipper on topic Re: Uranus

With that success I tried to get neptune. Its a lot fainter at mag 7.8. But armed with a star map was able to work out the point that shouldnt be there! No trace of a disk.


Al, I presume you were using your 10" Meade at the time, which makes me wonder what size aperture you'd require to have any hope of resolving Neptune's disk. Has anyone else managed to do this, and if so, what sort of 'scope were you using?
Paul Tipper,
South Dublin Astro. Soc.
19 years 4 months ago #574

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Replied by albertw on topic Re: Uranus with the naked eye

Then Terry goes and outdoes us all. He was using a C-14 though!

--
2. I'm just back from a w/end in Schull, West Cork, where I spotted Pluto
(with a C-14), for the first time since the 1960's, on a fantastically clear Sat night. Also, Mars was quite nice....
Albert White MSc FRAS
Chairperson, International Dark Sky Association - Irish Section
www.darksky.ie/
19 years 4 months ago #582

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Replied by dave_lillis on topic Re: Uranus with the naked eye

Hi Albert,
Uranus with the naked eye, thats some going,
I was out observing Mars last week and had a nice look at Uranus and Neptune, colour clearly seen.
They were both visible as disks, neptune been half the size of Uranus, the former having a dark blue colour while Uranus had a blue/green (almost aqua-marine) colour (at 310x).

I felt real lucky and went for pluto. I couldn't see it at first so I got the laptop out with starry night pro, once the program told me EXACTLY where it was , I was just about able to see it/not see it with averted vision (kept coming and going), thats a first for me, after 15 years.

Has anyone seen any of the moon of Uranus or Neptune ???
Dave L. on facebook , See my images in flickr
Chairman. Shannonside Astronomy Club (Limerick)

Carrying around my 20" obsession is going to kill me,
but what a way to go. :)
+ 12"LX200, MK67, Meade2045, 4"refractor
19 years 4 months ago #614

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