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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Saturn : Jewel of our Solar System

Last summer when Saturn used to be at its best , high in sky I looked at it for the 1st time through a telescope and I was blown away by the beauty of its rings. This is a dream come true for any kid who wants to be an astronomer. It was like a milestone.  Yesterday I was doing a stargazing session and pointed my telescope at the rising Saturn again . It was a bit faint but I could not resist seeing in my own eyes again. It was about magnitude 0.7 yesterday.

I was using my Orion 90mm StarMax Table top due to lack of man power for carrying the large telescope. I used an eyepiece of 10mm to get magnification about 125X. Rings were very sharp and probably I also figured out the Cassini division. I could not locate the 9.7 magnitude Titan because it was near horizon and city light was blocking it.

I don't  have the adapter for A-Focal photography yet but I took multiple shots with my digital camera succeeded in few of them and the sharpest I could take is as follows . I got this picture with ISO 1600, Exposure 1/40 and Aperture 3.3 and focus set to infinity.
Saturn on 18 FEB 2012
Mars and Rising Saturn

The above picture covers Mars at the top in Leo and Saturn at the bottom in Virgo, I will post the annotated one soon.