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Saturn really is Saturn-shaped!

20 Jun

I happened to stick my head out into the garden on Tuesday night and noticed that the sky was pretty clear, so I set up my telescope to see what I could find. It was still quite early, so the sky was still light, however two fairly bright stars appeared over to the west. When I checked Stellarium, I found that the uppermost star I was seeing was in fact Saturn.

I’ve seen pics of Saturn in countless books and videos over the years, so am well aware of the unique shape created by the rings that surround it, but I was still blown away when it actually appeared like that through my scope (after all, Saturn is about a billion miles away!). Unfortunately I’m still having camera issues, so wasn’t able to take a picture of it, however this image (courtesy of Google) is a pretty close approximation of what I saw through my scope.

I also spent a few hours out last night and was able to view Saturn even more clearly. Mars also put in an appearance, however while I could just about make out the distinctive reddish tinge, I wasn’t able to see much detail beyond that.

I’ve now ordered a new eyepiece from Amazon which should yield even better results. I have a feeling this may become an expensive hobby.

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Posted by on June 20, 2012 in Astronomy, Photography

 

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