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Observations - 23/09/21

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Observations - 23/09/21 was created by flt158

Hello double star aficionados. 

On Thursday night 23rd September 2021 I finally got a clear night after 4 full weeks of cloudy nights. 
I could NOT wait to set up my Williams Optics 158mm F/7 apochromatic refractor on its Berlebach Planet altazimuth mount in the back garden. My Dublin sky was almost 100% clear from 8.45 to 10.30pm. Sunset had occurred at 19.20 local time. The temperature was a steady 11˚ Celsius. The 15 km/h winds were clearly keeping all dew away. 
I live under Bortle 9 skies. 

All these double and triple star systems are in Cassiopeia. 
6 of them are totally new to yours truly. 
Some of them are real gems!
And they are all relatively easy to locate by star hopping and are quite easy to separate very cleanly. 
I never went above 140X at any time. 

All figures are from www.stelledoppie.ie  

1. Having started with Schedar (Alpha Cassiopeiae), Achird (Eta Cassiopeiae) I headed to the super triple - or should I say - quadruple Iota Cassiopeiae (STF 262). A & B are a true binary. But both C & D are optical companions - even though C is so close. Magnitudes: A = 4.6. B = 6.9. C = 9.1. D = 8.5. Sep’s from A are: 3”, 6.7”, 210.9”. PA’s = 228˚, 117˚ & 60˚. It doesn’t seem to matter how many times I observe STF 262 it still looks most impressive at 112X. The 3 main stars, which are white to me do, in their arrangement, look so superb at a low magnification. 

2. Not far away from Iota we have another magnificent triple star which is even more beautiful to me. It is Psi Cassiopeiae (H 5 83). The secondary B star is too faint to me. A & C are optical. But C & D are a true binary called STF 117. Magnitudes: A = 4.7. C = 9.2. D = 10. Sep’s from A are: 20.3” & 19.1”. PA’s = 128˚ & 131˚. STF 117's separation is 2.9”. Their PA is 253˚. All 3 stars are delightfully split at the low power of 112X. The K class primary is slightly orange. The two tiny companions are white and they are extremely close together at 112X. Psi Cassiopeiae is an excellent triple for everyone. I even prefer it to Iota Cas for some strange reason. 

3. The rest of these doubles are first time observations. STF 48 is a real beauty! Magnitudes: A = 7.8. B = 8.1. Sep = 5.4”. PA = 333˚. It may be an uncertain double but it is an exquisite sight. A wafer thin split at 40X; and a stunning sight at 112X. I saw both stars as pure white.  

4. STF 57 is a buried treasure right next to a bright 5.9 magnitude orange star called SAO 4229. If you set out to find this star you will discover STF 57 is seriously faint and in the same field of view. Magnitudes: A = 10.5. B = 10.9. Sep = 6.3”. PA = 199˚. I had no trouble splitting it at 112X. And I found it to be delicately beautiful at 140X also. 

5. After all this excitement I didn’t find HJ 1989 particularly impressive. It’s more of your “normal” set up of a double star and it is an uncertain double. Magnitudes: A = 7. B = 11.5. Sep = 31.8”. PA = 52˚. The two stars appeared white to me. There was plenty of space between them at 112X. Anyway it’s ticked off the list. 

6. HJ 1983 was much more pleasant even though it is an uncertain double. Magnitudes: A = 8.5. B = 10.1. Sep = 40.9”. PA = 305˚. Its primary is a nice K5 class orange star. But then I was soon to discover that the secondary is orange too. A nice surprise and a nice view at 40X & 112X. 

7. 21 Cassiopeiae or H N 122 is a true binary. Magnitudes: A = 5.7. B = 10.6. Sep = 35.9”. PA = 161˚. Both stars were white at 112X. 

8. Finally HJ 1997 is in the same field of view but it is an optical double. Magnitudes: A = 10.6. B = 10.7. Sep = 17.6”. PA = 47˚. I first got a slight glimpse at 40X and the 2 stars were cleanly separated. I went no further than 112X to greatly admire such a nice double.

Thank you for reading my latest report. 
It seemed so long since I had a good session. 
Comments are most welcome. 
My personal favourites were: Iota & Psi Cassiopeiae, STF 48, STF 57, HJ 1983 and HJ 1997. 

Maybe next week I will have another clear night. 
Until then: Adios, Amigos!

Very best regards and clear skies from Aubrey.  
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Last edit: 1 month 3 days ago by flt158.
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Replied by Until_then-Goodnight! on topic Observations - 23/09/21

Hello Aubrey,

I hope you and those close to you are well.

It was great to read that you made the most of the clear skies last Thursday. As I was too tired to take advantage of the good weather, it was great to hear what you got up to.

Who would have guessed that Cassiopeia is still revealing her wonders to you by have six new doubles to observe - great stuff!

HJ 1983 sounds like a real nice find...very well done! And you certainly make a compelling case for us to observe Psi Cassiopeiae. As Cassiopeia is beginning to move into a favourable position at the back of my house, I really must check out some of the doubles who have mentioned in your recent reports. 

All we need are some clear skies, but who knows when that'll be! We live in hope, hey?

Chat soon,
Darren.
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Replied by flt158 on topic Observations - 23/09/21

Great to hear from you, Darren!
I would be very interested in what your judgement is on both Iota and Psi Cassiopeiae. 
They are both triple stars which are about 6 degrees apart.

Sorry to say I have no idea as to when clear skies are due to return. 
Isn't there talk of some rain on the way?
 
Very best regards from Aubrey. 
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Last edit: 1 month 2 days ago by flt158.
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Replied by Until_then-Goodnight! on topic Observations - 23/09/21

Hi Aubrey,

Well that's settle it then...I'm definitely going to take a look at these stars the next chance I get. According to Met Eireann that could be next Friday!

You never know though, Wednesday looks like a potential runner too.

Clear skies,
Darren.
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Replied by flt158 on topic Observations - 23/09/21

We might have a clear night on Tuesday, Darren. 
But I'm probably talking rubbish!
As one of the Psalms says: do not put your trust in princes. 
And that includes meteorologists!! 
I'm available to do some observing on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday or Friday night. 

Aubrey.  
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Replied by Until_then-Goodnight! on topic Observations - 23/09/21

Good morning Aubrey,

I hear you about those meteorologists
Last edit: 1 month 10 hours ago by Until_then-Goodnight!.
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Replied by flt158 on topic Observations - 23/09/21

I have 5 more doubles in Cassiopeia to check out. 
And some of them are going to be rather difficult to split. 

Clear skies, Darren!

Aubrey. 
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Replied by Until_then-Goodnight! on topic Observations - 23/09/21

Well, good man Aubrey!

Having just returned from the back garden all I can say is 'thank you'.

Thank you because I split both Iota Cassiopeiae and Psi Cassiopeiae tonight. Needless to say, I am absolutely chuffed. What made tonight's session extra nice was how the conditions improved over a two hour period.

For example, at approximately, 20:30UT+1 I attempted to split Iota Cas. While I managed to see two stars - the primary and 'C' star,  the 'B' star was not to be seen at either 139X, or 250X. However, just before 22:00UT+1 the 'B' component revealed herself to me at 250X. When I first saw all three stars through the eyepiece I said 'Brilliant' as I was delighted that I managed to split all three stars. As you might recall I've had difficulty in past trying to split stars - Porrima comes to mind - do you remember that?

In terms of the colour of each star, I thought 'A' was a bright white, while the 'B' and 'C' showed the slightest hue of orange to me; with the 'C' star being ever so slightly darker. To help me locate Iota Cas I star-hopped from 'Segin' through to 52 Cas, then on to 55 Cas before arriving at Iota Cas - I really love star-hopping!

And you were dead right about Psi Cassiopeiae - it is magnificent! While, I managed to see three stars, which I believe are the same ones you observed, I think I prefer Iota Cas. I think I prefer Iota Cas because of the fun I had trying to locate it, and then only getting to split it on my second attempt. You could say that I had to work hard to see it in all it's glory. So, the extra effort with finding it and spliting it made it all the more special. Alos, I understand that there is even more to Iota Cas than I saw tonight. While reading around about each of your two wonderful stars I came across this piece:

stars.astro.illinois.edu/sow/iotacas.html

So, it seems that there are five stars to be seen - wow!   

Before finishing up for the evening I had a quick look at M31, NGC 457, and my favourite cluster(s) NGC 869 & 884. Oh, I forgot to mention, that as I was setting up my scope I caught the ISS as it flew over Dublin. Something tells me that tonight's session will make it on to my top observations for 2021.

Once again a big thank you my friend.

Clear skies, and I hope you manged to bag those five stars you were after.

All the best,

Darren.
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Replied by flt158 on topic Observations - 23/09/21

Great job, Darren! 
I knew you would greatly appreciate both Iota and Psi Cassiopeiae. 
They are both celestial wonders in the big "W". 

I forget - have you observed Achird (Eta Cassiopeiae)?
You probably have. 
I wonder what colours you saw. 

Clear skies from your pal Aubrey.  
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Replied by Until_then-Goodnight! on topic Observations - 23/09/21

Hi Aubrey, 

Very many thanks for your message. I've had more of a fleeting glance at Achird, so I'll take a proper look at it next night I'm out. 

I just noticed that most of an earlier message on this thread seems to have only saved a fraction of the original. In the message when I say 'I hear you about meteorologists'. I also mentioned that I'm available to observe most of this week... Do you think there could be a meet up taking place? 

Clear skies to you, 

Darren. 
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Replied by flt158 on topic Observations - 23/09/21

Hello everyone including Darren. 

We all should head to the Sugarloaf car park on Friday night.
www.met.ie are promising clear skies. 

Have we anyone interested?
Darren and I are very interested!!

Clear skies from Aubrey. 

 
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Replied by Until_then-Goodnight! on topic Observations - 23/09/21

Good morning Aubrey, 

I am afraid to say that I'm out for tomorrow. I injured my leg last night (torn hamstring), so I'd be in no physical state to make it down to the Sugarloaf. Very disappointed as you can imagine  ​​​​​​. 

Hopefully, the tear will heal relatively quickly... Fingers crossed! 

If there is a group heading down I'll be looking forward to reading about what you observe though. 

Clear skies, 

Darren. 
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Replied by flt158 on topic Observations - 23/09/21

Hello Darren. 

I'm sorry to learn about your hamstring. 
But I'm happy enough to observe at home as there doesn't appear to be anyone interested in heading down to the Sugarloaf. 

But you never know. If Michael, Paul, Ben or Random Pillars do wish to go I'll me there at the drop of a hat. 

Clear skies from Aubrey. 
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Replied by Until_then-Goodnight! on topic Observations - 23/09/21

Thanks very much Aubrey. Over the 24 hours the leg has improved thankfully, but I can't imagine that it will improve enough to observe tomorrow. 

Where ever you observe from tomorrow I hope it's a good one though. 

Clear skies, 
Darren. 
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Replied by Paul-Byrne on topic Observations - 23/09/21

If anyone is heading out tonight, I would give the Sugarloaf a miss and head to Trooperstown, the trees will give protection from the wind.  The wind will blow you off the Sugarloaf.
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Replied by flt158 on topic Observations - 23/09/21

Hello Paul. 

Great to hear from you. 
It turns out both Dublin and Wicklow skies are going to turn cloudy before 7pm. 
And remain so throughout the night. (over 90%) 
I have been checking both www.met.ie and clearoutside.com 

Therefore I doubt very much if I'll be doing another observing on Friday night at all. 

Best regards from Aubrey. 
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