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Questions tagged [amateur-observing]

Questions about the observation of celestial objects by non-professional astronomers.

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Knowing the RA/DEC of a star how do i locate a star from ground?

Standing in Melbourne at 4 am in the morning on 14th April 2019, Sirus RA = 06h 45m 08.9s, Dec = -16° 42' 58"..How do I Locate this. Standing facing east I turn myself towards south approx 90 Deg and ...
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0answers
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Recreating Observer Ecliptic Lat/Lon from JPL Horizons using SPICE toolkit

I apologise if this is the wrong place to ask. I am trying to recreate part of the calculations by the JPL Horizons system using SPICE. Specifically the Observer Ecliptic Latitude and Longitudes. I'd ...
4
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1answer
195 views

What's the object in the sky?

Days before, I saw this pic. I don't know what it is. Edit: This pic was taken by a Taoist at an ancient ruins in Mongolia on 2012-07-15 04:12 UTC+8 (day break). He said it looked strange. Edit: I ...
3
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1answer
43 views

Moon's path as seen from Earth

As observed from the surface of Earth: Will the moon ever repeat the same path (trajectory)? If yes, what is the period of repetition? And also will the moon cover the night sky with its path ...
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1answer
47 views

calculating stellar visibility

Please could you let me know a (basic) formula for calculating at what time a star would become visible of an evening in clear weather conditions. I presume the formula would involve the stars ...
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2answers
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When would we detect a tiny meter size natural satellit in a geostationary orbits?

A natural, tiny (meters-size, maybe 10.000kg mass) natural satellite could be trapped in a geostationary orbit. I wondered for quite some time: When and how are we able to detect these satellites? ...
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2answers
48 views

What are some of the best astronomy gatherings in the USA?

I'm part of a local astronomy club but the results from that have been vastly underwhelming with a membership count of around 50-200 active people at any given time. All that being said- I guess my ...
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1answer
89 views

Does the Sun twinkle?

Does our solar system have enough bodies in orbit to appear to twinkle to another distant solar system viewed from the side? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_asteroid-discovering_observatories ...
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2answers
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Options for first time astrophotography w/ 80/900 refractor?

Recently I bought a telescope and I started to take pictures of my observations. The most basic solution, I'm using a smartphone adapter and my Xiaomi Mi 6 camera to do that but the images (except for ...
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1answer
88 views

What I can observe with a 80/900 refractor telescope? What can I study?

Recently I bought a telescope after a very good conversation with an astronomer friend of mine. The main goal is to see planets. However, Mars is so difficult and is far to find it in opposition. I ...
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2answers
98 views

Scientifically important discoveries with the help of amateurs

I am looking for examples where amateur astronomers in these days contributed sigificantly to important scientifically discoveries. I am aware of one example: Victor Buso from Argentina was lucky ...
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1answer
57 views

Are the stars seen at the equator different throughout the year?

If you live on the equator and look up at the night's sky at, say, midnight, would you see a completely different sky on the 1st of January than you would on the 1st of July? I assume you would as ...
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1answer
165 views

What's the white glow around this star?

A few days ago, I took a photo of the night sky in the mountains of Georgia with my DSLR. There, I noticed that one single star (in the center of the part of the photo that I added below) looks very ...
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1answer
49 views

If the axis of the Earth was through Greenland, what would the north celestial pole be? [closed]

If the axis of the Earth was through Greenland, what would the north celestial pole be?
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34 views

How many amateur telescopes are looking for serendipity in a coordinated fashion, on average?

I can't read the Nature Astronomy article A kilometre-sized Kuiper belt object discovered by stellar occultation using amateur telescopes because the library I use doesn't subscribe electronically. ...
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1answer
42 views

Under what situations can an aperture mask improve the resolution of a small/medium amateur telescope? Is this demonstrable mathematically?

@antlersoft's answer describes some of the challenges to seeing any details in the small disk of Mars in small amateur telescopes. In the case of reflecting telescopes, it mentions the use of either ...
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1answer
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Does astronomical observing “count” as remote sensing?

I have long considered astronomical observing as a form of remote sensing, though quite different than typical remote sensing in that many objects observed are not resolved. I am wondering, though, ...
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1answer
88 views

76mm reflector vs 70mm refractor? Both are at sale at $200

I'm starting my astronomy hobby and looking for a beginner telescopes to start with. I've searched couple websites and found these 2 within my budget. I know for a fact that refractors gives you ...
2
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1answer
39 views

What are some formulas that are associated with the Schmidt corrector?

I want to fully understand how an SCT works. Thus, I figured out I can use some formulas that describe how an incident ray that is parallel with the axis would act after refracting off a Schmidt plate....
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What is the bright object above the moon in Sudbury, Ontario?

There is a bright object above the moon in Sudbury, highly visible to the eye, nothing else as bright in the sky except for the moon. I'm looking around 6 and 7am. What is it ?
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1answer
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Why aren't corrector plates aligned with the center of curvature in an SCT?

According to wikipedia, Schmidt corrector plates must be aligned with the center of curvature to eliminate the spherical aberration. However, in compact SCT designs by Celestron and Meade, that is ...
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2answers
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I've seen some stars tonight. What could I possibly have been looking at with these pictures?

The weather tonight here is great and I decided to shoot some hand-held (too bad I don't have any tripod) night mode pictures shot with P10. I have no experience in stars observation therefore I can't ...
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3answers
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What would happen if someone had a telescope and watched Betelgeuse when it goes supernova?

Would that person go blind? Neutrino detectors and the abundance of Neutrinos would detect the upcoming visible show about 3 hours before any visible signs, so there would be time to point certain ...
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Celestron NexStar 130 SLT Computerized Telescope GoTo Not Accurate

I am trying to use a Celestron NexStar 130 SLT Computerized Telescope, but I am not able to use the GoTo function. I do the three start alignment, it confirms matches, I make sure the level is ...
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1answer
164 views

Can't see any detail on planets with my new Celestron NexStar 130 SLT Computerized Telescope [duplicate]

Mars looks like a small white blob/circle and the same with all other planets. This is very frustrating. I've looked all over for a solution jumping from site to site and nothing. Please be different ...
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2answers
367 views

What liquids can be found in the void space?

Is there any material natural or otherwise a free floating liquid that can exist in space? https://space.stackexchange.com/questions/32274/what-liquids-last-the-longest-in-space
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2answers
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How to adapt small Dobsonian to use with a tripod?

I am the owner of a small 4", f/6.3 tabletop Dobsonian telescope with a 102mm aperture and 640mm focal length. It is based on a Dobsonian mount but I would like to use a tripod instead because of ...
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2answers
62 views

Question about the relevant physical parameters to build a backyard observatory

I live in a big city: São Paulo, Brazil. I would like to build a simple telescope dome to do some amateur sky obseravtions. But the whole project lies on the viability to see something interresting ...
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1answer
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Solution for counting atmospheric layers of planets according to relational data [closed]

This math states, that by multiplying the gravitational pull (we assume square of density of the planet), by its inclination (being how high and out it goes) and subtracting that loop from the ...
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1answer
143 views

what can i see using celestron nexstar 127SLT [closed]

I am planning to buy celestron nexstar 127SLT and I want to know what can I see using my telescope.
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0answers
35 views

What is the advantage of taking monochrome photographs in standard lenses

I've readen "When photographing faint objects monochrome photos will resolve more than RGB pics" Is this really a thing? If yes, how?
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1answer
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Will comet 21P that just passed Earth on Sept 10 produce Draconid storm on Oct 9?

Comet 21P/Giaccobini-Zinner just made its closest pass to Earth and also made its Solar perihelion on the same day (Sept 10) which is roughly one month ahead of the annual Draconids meteor shower (Oct ...
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1answer
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How was calculating the celestial latitude using an astrolable of any help to sailors?

I'm sorry if this sounds like a silly question but I don't understand how measuring the location of a star would help in sea navigation.
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Amateur observing

I'm new to this could someone tell me if I'd be able to see planets with the Celestron Cometron FirstScope described as below on argos.co.uk: A compact, easy to use and powerful 76mm reflector ...
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5answers
135 views

Edu-Science telescope

I don't know much about astronomy, but my kids are asking for telescopes to view planets, stars etc. Could anyone tell me if this Eduscience telescope is any good? This kit contains a 40x with a ...
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1answer
56 views

Throughout the year, are all parts of the night sky visible from any given point on Earth?

Or are there points on Earth where certain parts of the 360° night sky are never visible throughout the whole year? Depending on the answer to this question, are there points on Earth where parts ...
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2answers
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How to calculate exact angle to the moon?

I am building some device as a gift for my girlfriend. For this device to work, I need to be able to calculate the angle to which I should look towards (3D angle), in order to see the moon. This ...
2
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1answer
59 views

Need help with the calculations/conversion of a celestial object

I'm developing a telescope controller open-source application. I started this project with a very little knowledge of Astronomy. Basically, the app is going to send data to telescope over a wireless ...
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2answers
77 views

What are some good telescopes for a programmer? [closed]

I’ve never purchased a telescope and I was considering buying one. However, I wasn’t sure what to look for. I love to tinker and so a telescope that I can program with libraries such as SPICE would be ...
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3answers
223 views

Eyepiece diameter for small focal length planetary viewing on a large dobsonian?

I have a 12" dobsonian with a 1500mm focal length and want to do some higher magnification planetary viewing. Currently my highest magnification is ~80x via my 19mm eyepiece (calculated here), but I ...
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1answer
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What are these objects near Mirach

Night sky objects always interested me, nowadays Im trying to observe and photograph some of these objects. My phone is iPhone 6S, i used SkyGuide app to find positions, NightCap to photograph. Im ...
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4answers
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Why don't all perseid meteors follow the same trajectory?

Since these bits of debris crossing Earth's orbit have the same relative speed, why aren't they drawing parallel paths in the upper atmosphere? (consider one hour of observation to minimise Earth's ...
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2answers
278 views

Which lens is right to see which planets with an Orion StarSeeker 150 mm?

I'm an amateur astronomy lover and I have an Orion StarSeeker IV 150 mm, together with a bunch of lenses, which are the following: 1x 23mm (32.6x) and 1x 10mm (75x) wide-field 60-degree eyepieces 1x ...
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1answer
192 views

How bright is Comet PANSTARRS C/2017 S3 now?

The LiveScience article Incredible Hulk? Nah, This Glowing, Green Light in the Night Sky Is a Comet published just hours ago discusses Comet PANSTARRS C/2017 S3 and mentions: bright bursts ...
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1answer
72 views

Can this mirror be cleaned?

I dug up my old 6" Dobsonian telescope from storage and the mirror looks like the following: The picture is down the tube, so you can see the spider holding the secondary. To my eye, the spots look ...
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1answer
71 views

Perseid Meteor Shower Viewing events near Chicago

I'm going to be in Chicago during the weekend of Aug 11th, 2018. Can you suggest any viewing parties that are not too far away? I'm very very amateur. I don't really know too much about astronomy, ...
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Which planet or star is this?

The picture was taken with a smartphone camera at Latitude 48.860045 | Longitude: 2.366202 the 31th of July at 01h07min15s Paris time. On the left is obviously the Moon, and the lower red circle ...
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1answer
190 views

I have a Model 36050 telescope

My Model 36050 telescope came with the H6mm, H20mm and the green filtered moon lenses. It has a 360mm focal length and a 50mm diamiter. What can be seen with it?
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1answer
69 views

Beginner looking for extra eyepieces for telescope

I have a Bushnell Voyager Reflector telescope. It came with 2 eyepieces: k4mm and k20mm. And I am trying to find additional eyepieces to zoom in further on planets and stars, but the bushnell website ...
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What was that object? [duplicate]

On July 13, 2018, just after the clouds had lost their color, a bright object became visible about 20 degrees above the western horizon (there was a hill). It moved slowly east and had colors similar ...