Tonight was the climactic Deep Impact mission. I went to OMSI (my
local science museum) where they played the live NASA feed in the
planetarium. It was amazing. The planetarium had to close it's doors
because it reached capacity by about 10 o'clock. They ended up turning
folks away. I'm glad I got there a bit early.
I was surprised how many folks turned out that heard about it on the news and are not astronomers at all.
Even as cool as it was being there, I
only wished I could be at Indian Trail Spring with some folks I know
who went to see it for themselves in their own equipmment.
the look of the images NASA received, my fellow local amateur
astronomers who went to Indian Trail Spring may very well have seen an
increase in magnitude since the explosion was larger and brighter than
NASA expected it to be.
UPDATE July 8th: Kitt Peak posted an animation from 10:00 pm PST
to 11:30 pm PST that shows the comet at 300 power as it was struck.
There isn't an apparent explosion, but the comet begins to nearly
double in brightness and size over the course of the next 40 minutes
from the impact.
After seeing that animation, I really really really really wish I was at ITS!