Popular Astronomy

Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Stumble It More...


A Selection of Section Members Images are reproduced below together with occassional notes from me:

The new Jupiter observing 'season' has barely started with Jupiter still a very early morning object in November 2014; but it will rapidly become more accesible and new images will be posted here soon. In the mean time the last Jupiter apparition produced a wealth of interesting features that were observed and imaged by SPA members. Here are a few from February and March this year.

And some more from December 2013 and January 2014

Alan Clitherow took this pair of Jupiter Images (below) on 17th & 4th Dec 2011 respectively. Alan uses a 10" F6.3 (relatively long focus) Newtonian.

Dave Finnigan took this image of Jupiter with his 8" LX 200 on 27th November 2011. In this image and the one below by Martin Lewis you can clearly see the disturbance in the SEB following the GRS. There are also a couple of barges visible on the Northern edge of the NEB which is clearly getting thinner.

Created by AccuSoft Corp.

Martin Cole using an 11" SCT took this image of Jupiter showing IO and its shadow transiting the GRS. You can just see Io as a slightly brighter patch against the GRS - the shadow of course being obvious.

Paul Brierley made the sketch below using his 10" F4.8 Newtonian.

On 20th October Graham Sparrow made this nice sketch in colour using a 200mm Newtonian at x150. Graham noted that the barges appeared a very distinct, dark brick red.  The moon shown is Ganymede, which entered Jupiter's shadow while he was drawing. Graham didn't give a time to his drawing but his comment about the eclipse pinned it to 2330hrs UT.

On 20th Oct 2011 I organised a trip for 6 of us to go and observe through the 10" F15 Tomline refractor at Orwell Park observatory, Ipswich:
Assistant Section Director Dale Holt was one of the party and wrote the experience up on his website. Awesome instrument and truly nostalgic views. Unfortunately the seeing was poor that night but at moments you could see the potential of this great instrument on the planets. Two members of Orwell Society looked after us and despite 8 of us sharing the views Dale and another SPA member Dave Balcombe managed to grab quick sketches. I've reproduced these below but remember they were not done as accurate records but just to record the moment of observing Jupiter through a telescope from the Victorian era. If you can locate and arrange a visit through a vintage instrument in your area, it's well worth the effort.  Dales on left, Daves on Right. Andrew Robertson 27/10/2011


LEAD Technologies Inc. V1.01

Jupiter sketch.cropped.jpgNew section member Steve Hubbard made a couple of sketches of Jupiter on the night of 12/13th Sept 2011 with his 8" Takahashi Mewlon showing a couple of barges and their movement due to the planets rotation over a 20 min period.

Jupiter is now at a respectable altitude (in the early hours) for the first time in quite a few years. In the last couple of weeks I have observed it visually between 2 and 4am BST.  I realise not everyone can get out at that time, but if you are able to it's well worth the effort.  It is a very dynamic planet with a wealth of detail (which is always changing), easily discernible even in small telescopes.  I never tire of looking at that planet just watching different details pop into view in moments of better seeing.  Because it rotates in just under 10 hours you can observe different features over consecutive nights.  Frequently when a feature does come back into view it will have changed or moved slightly.  I'm now starting to get some excellent images and sketches from SPA members a few of which I've reproduced below and remember, a bright Moon doesn't interfere with observing/imaging Jupiter, in fact some of the best views are obtained in twilight. It currently crosses the meridian just after 4am BST at an altitude of 51 degrees.

Andrew Robertson 9/9/11