Astronomy

Observing Log for

Session Details


Tillicoultry

56.1574, -3.74906

50m

Notes

A very mild and still night. A hazy evening gave way to excellent viewing conditions. Clouds started to appear around 22:50.

Observations

M71 - Globular Cluster in Sagitta

A loose globular cluster, this appears more like a haze of stars or nebulosity rather than a true globular cluster. It was easily visible in both the finderscope and eyepiece although averted vision helped bring out the extent of this target at 25mm. There did appear to be some very faint granular texture to M71 after spending some minutes observing, though there is no discernible brighter core.

M15 - Globular Cluster in Pegasus

A very fine, compact globular cluster, easily located and visible in the finderscope. There is a bright central area with a fainter, granular patch surrounding it. It looked very good in the 10mm plossl with averted vision showing granularity almost filling the view.

M27 - The Dumbbell Nebula

Another easy to find target near Sagitta. Appeared as an elongated fuzzy patch in the 25mm. Adding the 2x barlow allowed the "dumbbell" shape to be seen whilst maintaining a good view of the nebula in the star field. A very pleasing view.

M52 - Open Cluster near Cassiopeia

Quite easy to locate following the stars at the top of the "W". A fairly sparse cluster on first viewing with one particularly bright star. As my eyes adjusted I could pick out some more concentrated star clustering towards the top of the field of view which corresponded with photographs online.

M33 - The Triangulum Galaxy

Sufficiently dark skies to star hop easily to this. The galaxy was not evident in the finderscope but readily apparent when I switched to the 25mm eyepiece using averted vision. I quickly switched over to the 30mm eyepiece which set the galaxy nicely among the dim kite pattern of nearby stars. The core was fairly bright with faint light evident stretching out across the field of view. it was enjoyable to let me eyes adjust and as the sky transparency varied could see the light of the galaxy better and then worse.

Double Cluster

Always an excellent target sitting in the rich starfields of the Milky Way. This looked superb with the 30mm widefield eyepiece. Unfortunately it was around this time that some high cloud started building.

M31, M32 and M110 - Andromeda Galaxy

Superb views with the 30mm eyepiece with the galaxy filling the view. Both M32 and M110 were easily visible, the former better with averted vision. Although the seeing conditions were getting poorer there was still plenty of diffuse light from M31 seen with the central bulge bright and distinct.

Mars

Very poor seeing conditions with Mars only a little way above neighbouring roof. I tried the 10mm and although there was a gradient of colour to the disc there was no discernible detail.