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Saturday, January 26, 2013


Sketching Jupiter (or No Jupiter Hasn't Tilted)

Jupiter sketched through my 50 mm unguided refractor (Alt Azmithal mount) on the nights of 15, 16 and 19 JanuaryJupiter as predicted by Stellarium (images inverted as my telescope inverts the image, and Stellarium doesn't in Alt AZ mode)

As I've mentioned before, the latest panic du jour is that Jupiter and Saturn are mysteriously tilting. David Greg has been imaging Jupiter, but I thought I'd present some of the sketches I did while on holiday down the coast.

For travelling, I use the little 50 mm refractor that I got when I was a teenager, it has an old and somewhat cranky alt/Az mounting, but it fits nicely in the back of an overloaded car and is good for the Moon and planets.

Since getting my webcam cameras set up and getting the digital camera adapter, I haven't done any sketching or about two years, so it was good to get back into it. Unfortunately, when sketching at home I have a red light torch to illuminate my note book, and a comfortable chair to sit on. This time I had to sketch on insolated sheets of paper in the semi-dark while crouching uncomfortably over the eye piece.

However, despite these limitations my drawing pretty closely match the predicted Stellarium position for Alt/Az mountings (when flipped because my telescope inverts the image, and Stellarium doesn't when in Alt/Az mode). I didn't look at the predictions until after I had made the sketches (at the very least because my computer with Stellarium on it was an hour and a half away).

So, no planetary pole flip.

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