Tuesday, August 22, 2017

a bunch of Arps (Glendo)

Another clear night. I was keen to try the dark skies of Glendo. We readied for some night time observing with Ian's 20 and eyepieces.

Lot less people this time...

8:11 PM MDT, Monday 21 August 2017. I wondered what would be good for imaging and considering some interesting targets. But when I learned that Ian had put the Star Adventurer away, I shelved my plans.

8:31 PM. We viewed Saturn. Titan, left or 9 o'clock; Tethys, 8 o'clock; Rhea, 8 o'clock and further out; Dione, 4 o'clock.

8:39. A minute or so ago we noted a northbound satellite.

We tagged Iapetus to the east or 3 o'clock.

8:52. I overheard Chris say something well: "They named the stars before they had telescopes."

9:07. The Milky Way was obvious now.

9:33. We viewed M7. Messier 7 is off the spout of the teapot. Technically, it is in Scorpius. I found it with the digital setting circles. Used the 31mm. It is a big loose open cluster. Mostly white stars. HR 6660 was near centre, an easy wide double, equal stars. [ed: The A and B separation is 34.50".] I saw an orange-red star [ed: HR 6658, a tight double, K-class] to the south-west. I compared the view to the chart in SkyTools 3 Professional.

9:46. Chris went after fuzzies using Ian's Arp book and some of the Caldwell objects. NGC 6569 was on the right edge (east). Bright and big. 6558, on the left, was very faint. Had a spiral look. [ed: ST3P says they are both globular clusters in Sagittarius.] I had first viewed 6569 in the summer of 2012 at the CAO. Two in the view at low and medium power.

Then he star hopped a short distance to NGC 6522 and 6528. A nice pair of fuzzies in the field. [ed: Two more globs.] Two in the view again. Near Nash aka γ (gamma) 2 Sagittarius. [ed: These are on the Herschel 400 list.]

9:56. The team didn't think the sky is very transparent. It looked OK to me. It was windy.

9:59. Arcturus was flickering. ST3P told me it was at 37°17' altitude.

My allergies were bad. I turned my chair to change the way the wind was hitting my face. To reduce the watering of my eyes.

I put on long pants and another long shirt.

10:11. We saw a bright satellite northbound heading toward Dubhe. It flared.

10:16. I could see M13 (Messier 13) naked eye.

11:04. Tagged a short meteor in Pegasus. It ended at Enif.

11:20. Viewed NGC 7479. A galaxy in Pegasus. Small. It had a strong bar and swooping arms above and below or the east side and west side. It reminded me of the Deep Space Nine station. We used the 31mm and 21mm oculars. aka MCG 2-58-60 and PGC 70419 and Caldwell 44. [ed: Another Herschel 400.]

11:34. We viewed NGC 2655 in Camelopardalis. I had seen it before. It's one of the RASC Finest [ed: and a Herschel]. There was not a lot of detail with the 31mm. We tried the 21mm.

11:51. Viewed NGC 1023, an edge-on spiral. Another Arp and another Finest. In the constellation Perseus. [ed: Also previously viewed.]

Katrina headed to bed.

12:07 AM MDT, Tuesday 22 August 2017. Viewed NGC 6621 in Draco. ST3P shows the target as two small interacting galaxies (with 6622). Will need to revisit. [ed: aka Arp 81. 6621 is aka MCG 11-22-30 and PGC 61582; 6622 is aka MCG 11-22-31 and PGC 61579.]

I spotted a double star to the left. Perhaps PPM 20801?

When I looked up in the sky, I thought the conditions had suddenly deteriorated. Then I realised I was missing a lens from my eyeglasses. Fortunately, I found it! Wow... Lucky day.

12:22 AM. Crikey. Sat on my glasses. They take a lot of abuse.

Took in NGC 7753 in Pegasus. I thought it was edge-on but the big galaxy is nearly face-on. [ed: SkyTools shows it edge-on.] aka Arp 86, MCG 5-56-5, and PGC 72387. I noted the little oval below or south-west [ed: 7752]. aka Arp 86, Markarian 1134, MCG 5-56-4, and PGC 72382.

We enjoyed scotch o'clock with Eric. He offered a half dozen types. I requested a Macallan and it was lovely. He offered more but I needed to keep a clear head. As clear as possible with my cold remnants and allergies flaring.

Ian went to bed. Chris and I remained.

I suggested Arp 273 in Andromeda but Chris couldn't find it...

12:50. Headed to Ursa Minor and viewed NGC 6217. It was not round. I thought it showed arcs. Two stars pointed to it at the top-left (north-west) [ed: including Tycho 4571-0972 1]. I had viewed this last fall.

12:58. Examined NGC 2276 and 2300, aka Arp 25. 2276 was fan shaped; 2300 was a diffuse oval. I had previously viewed these last summer.

I suggested another Arp target but we kludged the Star Commander and couldn't figure out how to get it back to a familiar mode. I was tired anyway.

Chris and I packed up the gear.

An interesting session with many challenging objects. It was good to have lots of aperture. Nabbed a few unseen items so I was happy.

1:34. I collapsed on my bed. Got my beeswax candle going after many tries. Tried to read for a bit but kept stumbling over the same paragraph. Lights out.

"What a day..."

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