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Monday, April 6th, 2009
Three times a charm?  Well, maybe. 
 
I didn't get out until close to 10pm.......Mr. Mom duties.   The Clear Sky Chart indicated poor seeing early, with an improvement around 10pm.   There definitely was improvement, and it continued to improve well past 11:00pm.   I packed up at 11:30pm, but I probably should have stayed out later.
 
These images of the moon are not the close-ups I hoped for, but they are improved over the previous night.   The images 'boiled' during capture on screen, but they cleaned up reasonably well in Registax.   Registax is without a doubt, the best free software there is.   Still, I was not able to use higher power.   I probably should have waited until later in the night to begin imaging.   As I said above, seeing was continuing to improve when I packed up and went in.
 
Saturn was my last target, and I am glad I waited.   I couldn't get quite the scale I wanted with the 3x barlow, but I did manage to get my best image of the year (of Saturn) with a 2x barlow.   Unfortunately, Saturn is a pretty small object.....even at over 500x.   A 3x barlow is just about mandatory....the best imagers are using 6-8" f8 scopes with 5x Tele Vue Powermates.
 
Celestron NexStar 4se, ToUcam Pro II, 2x barlow:  1008 frames
 
Saturn:  Image from last night, and an image from the night before . . . .big difference.....seeing is so important!    Not a great image by any means, but at least you can see some detail on the surface as well as the shadow of the rings.   If you look very carefully, you can just see a faint, fuzzy image of Titan out to the left of the planet.   I could bring it out brighter, but the planet would be overexposed. 
 


Image Gallery For This Session
Gassendi 2009 4 5 label Herschel 2009 4 5 label
Saturn 2009 4 05 b3 label Saturn 4 4 09
Sinus Iridum 2009 4 5 label
   

Gassendi_2009_4_5_label.jpg
Click picture above for larger version
If the picture seems too bright or too dark, try adjusting the brightness below.
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