Sunday, April 10, 2022

saw the Pup! (Bradford)

I think I got it! At last. I saw The Pup!

I repeatedly saw a fine point of light opposite star PPM 713043. Easy split. At times it tolerated direct vision. It also appeared briefly as A drifted out of the field.

The drift angle was roughly 3:30 to 9:30.

Unfortunately it was right on the diffraction spike which diminished a bit the brightness of this very faint star. But at the same time, that spike pointed nearly directly to the PPM star. Actually the diffraction spike was a hair south of PPM, maybe by about 1 degree.

sketch of Sirius A and The Pup

North is down, east is right. PPM 713043 is to the 9 o'clock position.

From A to PPM, the angle is 247° (per SkyTools). So that would make Sirius B 247-180, i.e. 67° estimated. B was to the ENE. Maybe tighter to due E.

Used the cooled loaner Orion XT10 Intelliscope (f/l 1200mm, f/4.7) still slightly out of collimation. baader 8-24 zoom eyepiece at 10 to 12 mm. With a Tele Vue PowerMate 2x. So working around 5 to 6mm. I.e. 200x.

Possibly spotted at low power (24 or rather 12mm) but not certain. Saw many times at the mid-range zoom. Too mushy at highest zoom.

Observed from sunset (7:55) to 8:30 PM EDT. Someone told me to view it in a bright sky. Or maybe they suggested an earlier time to avoid bad seeing.

Couldn't find Sirius earlier in the daylight sky. Scanned and scanned. 50 degrees down and right from the 1/3rd Moon.

Saw SAO 151875 as the sky darkened. Then SAO 151867. Sometimes PPM 713043 needed averted vision but it got easier as the sky went black.

Average transparency. Average seeing, at times above average. Air temp 2.6°C, 50% humidity.

Noted my moonshadow as I packed up.

Woo hoo!

That was exciting!

Early on I got discouraged. I had brought out the DSLR and 2-in nosepiece but I either couldn't centre on the star or reach focus. That thwarted my plans to collimate. So I just had to roll with it.

Didn't matter. I reached good focus in the ocular, particularly on the right and central part of the field.


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