Wednesday, January 31, 2007

A nice meteor on 1/31

Jan 30/31 '06 clear sky

NOAA 8[ #83-022A] left a tumbling trail (>) on the left while M-5 R/b [06041B] flared brightest marked (>>)

Timing of x1 flash ( bottom 2 flashes in above image) duration derived from video time stamp in the second term is 39:109-26.828=12.281 seconds for the 83-022A.

pedestal needed

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

FengYun 1C FY-1C debris

China kill vehicle destroyed FengYun 1C - an old polar orbit weather sat and created swarms of space debris. The cataloged entries move across our morning sky 5am-6am . They are faint 6+-7+ magnitudes. Note the apparent parallel tracks. You can just make out the Crux on the lower right hand corner.

Monday, January 22, 2007

86-019AG flashes in Centaurus 1/22/2007 am

While warming up to prepare to watch Fengyun 1C debris.. I lost myself and ended up bagging this fast flasher 86-019AG in 75mm f1.4 using watec-902H2Ultimate. PPAS database indicate s a single entry (reproduced below).

Designtn Date Time Obsr Durtn Acc Num Per Remarks
86- 19AG 97-11-13 18:32:05.7 RE 3

The actual flash patterns look complex.. a quick series of twinking to max brightness
and dim down.. ( click the image to have a close look). Video on archive.
Skymap Plot showing the south-bound debris and the general star field
( larger than the 75mm lens).

Thursday, January 18, 2007

slow meteor pass through Columba - Dove

I was reading a book on Darwin when i noticed 'activity' on my screen. A slow meteor just pass through the tiny constellation of Columba - the dove.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

C/2006 P1 ... I need a clear sky

Comet McNaught was is a 'day' event reported on Sunday onwards.... and see the incredicle actual light curve here . This is my first time I bring along my 10 x50s, camera tripod and a small digicamera S3 Canon plus the orientation chart a AM and PM plot of comet-sun configuration to work today. But the sky was cloudy and transparency sucks...

How often do you have a chance to view a celestrial object during the the day ? Discounting the obvious sun and moon of course. A comet !!! during noon!!! Even for Venus I only tackled that once from Mt Victoria, Wellington, NZ in deep blue sky 1979 naked eye.

Whatever you do please be careful, dont look into the Sun nearby.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Comet C/2006 P1 McNaught

This Singapore Western horizon around 1/13 7:15pm with Sun just below the horizon. Positions plot of the C/2006 P1 is shown over the rest of the month. Comet is low in the horizon. Use Venus as a guide and sweep this region with a high power pairs of binocular to aid in finding the comet. ( FOR SAFETY do not do this if sun is above horizon)

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Meteor Jan 6/7

Great mass of clouds and a tiny near- vertical meteor
detected on the little clear patch of sky left on lower right corner

With clouds rolling past - i centred the 12mm f1.4 lens on the brightest star- Canopus in SE around 8:00pm. After some time i shifted FOV and I immediately saw a quick succession of tracking boxes - tell tale signs a moving object was preceding it. It was a meteor around 8:30pm. Soon more clouds closing in. A meteor zapped past near Crux the Southern Cross.

However in between there were clear patches. VideoLM was +4.9. Then a little while later a short 'tadpole' size meteor caught my attention. On AVI playback, it looked like a falling water droplet filmed in slow motion - i saw the beginning thin 'line' developed and slowly break off from the front teardrop mass. I set my alarm at 4:30am so that if the pc for some reason hung up again at least i can restart the UFOprogram. I woke up and recentred the FOV again, Another meteor right inside the Crux

the pc didnt hang (yet) and from then till 6:48am the system detected several meteors with rising Southern Cross as backdrop. While the pc is doing its meteor detection i was reading Peter Raby's biography on "Afred Russel Wallace - A Life " and I finished the book around 8:00am and went back to sleep. Now i know Wallace a little better than the famous demarcating Wallace's line. There was an entry that he saw Pole Star near the horizon in his Amazon adventure. I counted 14 meteors in total - didnt bother with plotting since no significant showers members expected.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

my first Meteor in 2007

I left the video system on with a 12 mm f1.4 video lens and the new watec 902H2 Ultimate ( Hi-gain). My first meteor of 2007 (above) soon appear after midnight. The bright star in the lower is Canopus and tau Puppis [mag 2.94] at 10 o'clk position.

The prime reason of getting this watec model is to get a deeper LM penetration and I am happy that the noise level is pretty low even at this HI-GC setting).

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Old vs New ( watec 902H vs 902H2Ultimate)

Wat-902H2(Ultimate) [2= 1/2" 3=1/3" ccd]

Note the Medium-Low-High Gain control on the new watec on the right.

Frontal view
Left: Watec-902H2, Right: Watec-902H
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