The sky was 90% clear and outside temperature was around 50F. After polar alignment and the telescope cooling to the outside temp, the session started. Mars was near the zenith and was bright: the images were quite blurry but the polar caps were with the 9mm eyepiece. The Orion nebula was bright and more detail could be seen with the light-pollution filter that was used with every target. My sky had so much light pollution that I could only see to about 4th magnitude! A considerable amount of more detail can be seen with this LXD75 sn-10 as compared to my older Meade 6600 – the Orion nebula was clear and greenish with the 6600, but more of the nebula could be seen with the LXD75. I attached a new Meade color CCD camera and snapped a couple of images of the Orion Nebula, but I did not have enough exposures to see the nebulosity. About 20 frames were taken and then stacked: 50 should have been taken with would have produced longer exposure and better images.
For the first time, I had the AutoStar computer slew the telescope to M1: the Crab Nebula. This is the first time I have observed this supernova remnant. It was barely visible even with my skylight filter, but I could discern a faint blob of grey nebulosity. This is one of my next targets for the CCD camera.
Saturn was at a good position for viewing at about 11pm. Its rings are nearly edge-on, and four of Saturn’s moons were visible. Atmospheric cloud bands were visible with the Celestron 4mm ocular.
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