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MAS observing reports

MAS observing reports

  Planned Observing  

Details of future planned events are restricted to those open to the general public (Members should look in the Members Only section for details of any future events not open to the public - which includes most of our local Outreach activities (schools, cubs, brownies etc)

Reports are listed in date order, next planned first. Be aware that dates can change (usually due to the weather :-) ) so please check nearer the event before making a journey (or check our Twitter feed, details on the previous page)

  Observing Reports  

The rest of this page is dedicated to observing reports and aimed at bringing an awareness and appreciation of astronomy to the general public.

(-) 20 Apr 2018 Lyrids - (from Cookham Dean)

Friday 20 April - Observing Lyrids 2018 from Cookham Dean
Report by Percy K
Just a quick account of the Lyrids meteor watch from our regular observing site at Winter Hill. Matt, Des and myself attended the site. Des had brought along his 4"refractor and some binos. Matt brought his binos with him. I brought along my trusted 6" refractor on a Sky Tee mount, and some 7x50 Japanese binos (Revue brand). Our objective was to count as many Lyrids meteors ( C/1861 G1 Thatcher), and observe some DSO's. The sky condition was not perfect. In fact it was clear but milky across the entire sky. Lyrid report is very simple. We observed 2 between Matt, Des and myself. They were not very bright, at around +3 magnitude. Meteor were very scarce indeed, even 1 night before maximum. Deep sky objects (DSO) observed as follows; Planet Venus presented itself in the western sky, perched beneath the Pleiades ( Seven Sisters). It was at a almost full phase illumination. Pleiades was a lovely sight in the 6" refractor and binoculars. M35 open cluster in Gemini was jewel like. The fainter NGC 2158 cluster was just visible as a faint glow. M67 open cluster was prominent in the 6" scope. Beehive M44 was a was outstanding in both refractors. Lots of little triangles formed by stars within the cluster. Triangles can be found in any cluster. More obvious in the Beehive. M65 and M66 galaxies in Leo were observed. Sky conditions did not allow a good contrast as the galaxies were a bit fainter than the open clusters observed earlier. A drop down into Corvus and looked at M104 (NGC 4594 Sombrero galaxy). It was a 8.3 mag galaxy and of a small angular size, thus making it difficult to get a lot of detail out. Jupiter was above the tree line in Libra and lots of detail was observed. Ganymede, Callisto and Europa were clustered on one side of the giant planet. Whilst Io was on the far side .As the planet climbed higher into the sky, more wealth of detail was visible in both telescopes. Messier 13 (the Great globular cluster) in Hercules cleared the trees and was on full display. The stars sparkled like jewels. Messier 57 (the Ring Nebula) was a lovely sight in the big scope. NGC 457 (the Owl cluster) was standing upright and looking right back at our telescopes. A lovely site indeed. NGC 884/869 ( the Double cluster) in Perseus was a joy to look at. Some of it's Red Giants were clearly visible. Messier 37/36/38 (NGC 2099 / NGC 1960 / NGC 1912) were also observed and were a lovely sight of open clusters. Some lovely double stars were observed in Des and my refractors; Castor in Gemini Lyra epsilon 1 and 2 Mizar and Alcor in Ursa Major Izar in Bootes. The moon presented a lovely 1st quarter phase. Lots of craters and sea floors were viewed. We even spotted a couple of very bright Irridium satellites tumbling through space. As a group we decided it was a good night of observing all manner of objects and looked forward to our next outing. Signing out. CLEAR SKIES Percy
This note last modified: 26th May 2018 10:51.


(+) 12 Aug 2017 Perseid Meteor Watch - (Ockwells Park)

(+) 26 May 2017 Dorney Common - (observing report)

(+) 12 Dec 2015 Geminids watch - (at Ockwells Park)

(+) 17 Oct 2015 (to 23rd) Orionids Meteor shower

(+) 28 Sep 2015 Super Moon and Lunar Eclipse

(+)  5 Jun 2015 Cookham Dean (after monthly meeting)

(+) 21 Mar 2015 StarGazing Live 2015 - (see Events)

(+) 15 Nov 2014 Public observing and meteor watch at Braywick

(+)  7 Nov 2014 Cookham Dean

(+) 25 Oct 2014 Lunar occultation of Saturn

(+) 11 Oct 2014 Cookham Dean

(+)  3 Oct 2014 Cookham Dean (after monthly meeting)

(+) 10 Aug 2014 Supermoon and Perseids at Ockwells

(+)  3 Jan 2014 Cookham Dean

(+) 13 Jul 2013 Cookham Dean

(+) 13 Feb 2013 Asteroid 2012DA14 closest approach

(+)  6 Jun 2012 Second Transit of Venus

(+)  6 May 2012 Cookham Dean

(+) 21 Mar 2012 Lyrids

(+)  8 Oct 2011 Draconids

(+) 23 Sep 2011 Cookham Dean

(+)  2 Sep 2011 Cookham Dean

(+) 22 Aug 2011 Comet Garradd

(+) 11 Aug 2011 Perseids

(+)  8 Apr 2011 Cookham Dean

(+)  8 Jun 2004 First Transit of venus

(+) 16 Jul 1994 Shoemaker Levy 9 (from Arnes garden)

(+) 10 May 1994 Eclipse from Winter Hill

(+)  3 Jun 1989 Occultation of Sigma Sgr by Saturn