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Cdnastronomer

How to find a dark site

Just became aware of this awesome Website to help you locate a dark sky. 

http://darksitefinder.com/map/

Mars in 360

Awesome Mars image in 360! 👍

Mars Panorama – Curiosity rover: Martian solar day 1451

Moon in 360 view

Very nice image / view from the moon in 360 taken by the Chinese robotic lander mission.

Great work CNSA (China National Space Administration)! 

Deep sky object (DSO) list

Found some great resources to help to plan my night sky watching, and though it would be a great idea share with you. 

June/2016 Solstice: full moon 

Although the “June solstice full moon” was officially June/20th she is gorgeous on June/19


Equipment:

  •  Orion XT 8″ 
  • Eyepices: Celestron X-Cel LX 12mm 
  • Moon filter: Orion 13%
  • iPhone 6 with “Celestron X-Cel LX Telescope Eyepiece Astrophotography Adapter for iPhone 6”

Juno – NASA Jupiter mission 

Jupiter – Into  unknown… July / 4th

NASA @ YouTube

Pictures of our solar system

Listening to Dr David Grinspoon sitting in  for Dr. Tyson on StarTalk about Venus, I realized that we currently  have access to  real on the ground pictures of a few planets/ moon / comet of our solar system, therefore I thought would be cool to list a few of them here… 👍

Venus

Picture taken by a  Russian probe – Venera

Mars

Picture taken by NASA – Rover

Titan (Saturn moon)

Picture  taken by NASA – Cassini–Huygens


Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko

Picture by ESA – Rosetta

Moon, Jupiter & pictures with iPhone 6

Yesterday a friend of mine sent a message  telling me that the moon was beatiful and  I should check it out with my telescope, a few minutes later my lovely wife told me  she read that it was a “Snow moon” – based on The Old Farmers Almanac “February’s full Moon is traditionally called the Full Snow Moon because usually the heaviest snows fall in February ”

With that I decided once again to setup my telescope in my porch and managed to take some nice pictures:

  Orion 25mm (48 x magnification) 

Celestron LX 12mm (100 x magnification)
 

And due to Jupiter position in the sky (close to the moon) and spent about one hour adiminring Jupiter and 04 of its moons – Jupiter has 67 moons. Those 04 moons were discovered by Galileo back in 1610: Io, Europa, Ganymede and Callisto. 😃

During that process I took the opportunity to “try” to snap some pictures with iPhone6,  eyepieces and #80A blue filter… I say “try” because the results do NOT show Jupiter stripes and colors… 😔

 Eyepiece: Celestron LX 12mm (100 x magnification)  

With Celestron LX7mm and Orion #80A blue filter (171 x magnification)  

I also tried  Orion 25mm with Celestron 2x Barlow (equivalent to 12.5mm), but the results were all very similar.

  
Bottom line I was NOT able to capture Jupiter color and stripes using my iPhone 6! But I am bit stubborn… I will do some research and check if there is any work around…😎

Btw if you take  pictures from your telescope with your smartphone, please leave coments.

Equipment:

  •  Orion XT 8″ 
  • Eyepices: Orion 25mm, Celestron X-Cel LX 12mm and Celestron X-Cel LX  7mm
  • iPhone 6 with “Celestron X-Cel LX Telescope Eyepiece Astrophotography Adapter for iPhone 6”

Benchmark – what to expect from a Dobsonian XT 10

Yes, I know I have a “XT 8”, but hear me out…

Yesterday night had some friends coming  over, and as I knew the kids always love to see the night sky, I checked Stellarium software (free) in advance to see what would be quick and easy to see… And turns out I would be able to spot the giant Jupiter from my porch arround 22:00 – not the best viewing condition due to street light…😁

Turns out that we were able to see Jupiter and its 4 biggest moons, which made the kids and adults were happy and one of my friends wondering if he should by a telescope for his son 👍- I used  a 12mm eyepiece (100x in my orion xt8) that allowed them to see with a good zoom, but not having to  realign the telescope each other  second… Yes! “Equatorial mount” telescopes or “goto” telescope would definitely have this issue!

In that process somehow something snapped inside me and made me enquire myself if it was not time invest into a new telescope or somehow my Orion XT 8 that I bought in Kijiij last summer had some issue and it was delivery up to its potential… 😱

After spending a few hours digging into the Internet looking for  images /videos that would allow me have an idea of benchmark against my XT8, I found a very nice YouTube video from a gentleman in New Zealand with an Orion Dobsonian  XT10 that I am calling it from now on   “My Benchmark video”  😉

Those nice images made me put my concerns to rest. It turns out that my XT 8 is really delivering up to its potential and I realize that I should not invest in a new telescope for now!

If you are planning to buy a telescope and need an idea of how you will see, or got into question about the quality/ performance of your equipment take a look into that video, it will definitely help!

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