Thursday, 3 June 2010

TSP - The Objects: Part 5

This is the final instalment of the objects I saw at this year's Texas Star Party - and you might be pleased to know it's a very short one as the weather did not co-operate! I'd got invited back to the 48" by Jimi and Alvin for some more huge scope observing.

Friday 14th May.
Conditions: Started out clear and dry but the humidity rose sharply after dark to a very high 78%
Seeing: II
Transparency: II
NELM: 6.5-6.7
Instrument: 48" f4 Dob

IC 1182, galaxy in Serpens - Faint, oval, with optical jet (MAC 1605+1747B).
Possible new gravitational lens in Lynx?? - At first, this looks similar to the Double QSO in UMa, with two fat 'stars' on show, but at high magnification each component looks elongated while at very high magnification (1200x) there is a tiny companion located at "5o'clock'" from the larger object.
We also looked at some eye candy before shutting down.

By 0100 it was obvious that this was not going to be an all-night session, we could see fog over the Prude Ranch four miles away and the humidity, which had been rising all evening, was now 78%. The transparency had dropped right off and clouds were rolling in, so we packed up and headed back down to the house for chat and a beer.
And that was it for the observing at the 2010 Texas Star Party, as the following night, Saturday, was a complete write-off due to clouds. It had been a good star party, observing-wise and we all had enough observing to make us all happy.

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