2011-10-31, Birthday Sight Report

2011/10/31 21:30 – 00:00 CST
Backyard, Ankeny
40F and clear, seeing conditions were not ideal but not bad.
Waxing moon visible for much of night, low on the southwest horizon.

Mostly just tested new popup observatory setup, but saw the following.

What I saw:

* Mu Cephi
Equipment: Zhumell Z10 10″ Newtonian reflector
Garnet Star. Red supergiant in Cepheus, one of the largest and brightest stars in the Milky Way. Very orange/red in color, bright and sharp.

* M52
Equipment: Zhumell Z10 10″ Newtonian reflector
Small open cluster, found using new push-to system and star hopping.

* Jupiter
Equipment: Zhumell Z10 10″ Newtonian reflector
Was very bright, almost too bright. Seeing conditions made it difficult to get sharp focus at 416x, but less mag looked good.

* NGC 6946
Equipment: Zhumell Z10 10″ Newtonian reflector
Spent a lot of time looking for NGC 6946, galaxy near Cepheus, found exact spot where it would be and surrounding stars, but seeing conditions were just too bad. Possibly light pollution as well. OH — and the stupid moon.

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