Return of Uranus

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michael feist
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Return of Uranus

Post by michael feist »

First sighting this apparition. 16/07/21: Used 10x42 monocular, handheld. Had to go to the local park, because after rising, Uranus was hidden in tree, until 0245 BST. Located at 0215 BST in a good, clear sky. Appropriate field stars to locate Uranus are: Rho (46) , RZ (45), a neat wide pair, and the very wide pair of PI (42) and (40) all in Aries. This asterism is pretty obvious. Then using Pi (42),drop down to sigma (43) and omicron (37) - these three stars make a neat isosceles triangle. Uranus is near omicron, but do not confuse this with a fainter star slightly to the left. Approximate RA 2hrs 47m and dec. +15 ° 39'. Detailed chart in BAA site. On returning home followed from bedroom window until 0255 BST. Not too far across to the left you can find the Pleiades!. (Uranus obs.# 1521). Regards maf.
SkyBrowser
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Re: Return of Uranus

Post by SkyBrowser »

JPL have Uranus at mag 5.8, so naked-eye visible to those with sharp eyes and dark skies. Not me unfortunately!

I wonder if there's any mileage in plotting a light curve?
michael feist
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Re: Return of Uranus

Post by michael feist »

17/07/21: Very clear sky in the early hours, with Milky Way obvious above my back garden. Waited until 0245 BST to view Uranus again from the bedroom window, so did not need to venture to the park. Followed until 0300 BST. Used rested 10x42 monocular. Possibly slight movement detected. (Obs.#.1522). Regards maf.
michael feist
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Re: Return of Uranus

Post by michael feist »

Re unaided- eye views of Uranus. Have never in all my 1522 sightings of this planet ever seen it with the unaided eye. Of course, for all of this time it was quite lowdown even at opposition, as first sightings were made when was in Sagittarius. My first observations were in 1989 and 1991, with the start of series of observations started on 13/07/1993. As for estimating its magnitude, this is certainly now too much for my old eyes and I imagine there would be little or any day to day or month to month, or even apparition to apparition, variation of its brightness. It is apparently a very bland ice-giant and only appears as a starry point in my small instruments. Regards maf.
nigeljoslin
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Re: Return of Uranus

Post by nigeljoslin »

Wow! Interesting to hear that you have made so many observations of this planet, Mike. And nice to hear that it has returned, albeit in a horizon-skirting manner.

Bland it is, Mike, but for me there is a haunting quality about it that I really enjoy.

Best wishes, Nigel
Skywatcher 350P f4.65, Skywatcher StarTravel 102 f5, Adler Optik 9x63 binoculars
jeff.stevens
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Re: Return of Uranus

Post by jeff.stevens »

michael feist wrote: Sat Jul 17, 2021 5:49 am ...Waited until 0245 BST to view Uranus again from the bedroom window, so did not need to venture to the park. Followed until 0300 BST. Used rested 10x42 monocular. Possibly slight movement detected. (Obs.#.1522)...
I do admire this early hours dedication by you Mike (and others). I seem to be running out of stamina in this respect. I'm fine up until about midnight, but my endurance for the early hours isn't good. I remember making the effort for last year's comet NEOWISE, and recall that a couple of weeks' observing into the small hours took it's toll on me.

However, I also recall the rewards of observing at that tine of day; the peace; the solitude; time to think about what it is I am observing; the sheer scale and magnificence of the environment beyond the confines of our planet. All very worthy stuff.

Best wishes, Jeff.
SkyBrowser
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Re: Return of Uranus

Post by SkyBrowser »

michael feist wrote: Sat Jul 17, 2021 6:12 am and I imagine there would be little or any day to day or month to month, or even apparition to apparition, variation of its brightness.
You're right. Over the course of this year it varies from mag 5.7 to 5.9!
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Re: Return of Uranus

Post by SkyBrowser »

Here's a chart showing a close-up of Uranus' position over the next three months or so. Of interest, I think -

There's a field-of-view indicator 1.2° in diameter there, but you can't see it as it's too big for this field! So Uranus is moving no more than a degree or so during this period.

I'm showing stars to mag 13 - there aren't that many are there. And Uranus is the big kid on the block - nothing brighter than it.

I'm also showing NGC and IC objects to mag 30 - and there are none!

Daily movement is about 100" at the moment, slowing down until August 19th when it turns the corner and moves with retrograde motion, speeding up once again.


Uranus 2021 A.png
Uranus 2021 A.png (23.68 KiB) Viewed 69 times
michael feist
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Re: Return of Uranus

Post by michael feist »

The star on your chart marked (6.7) , is I think T1223.1988.1/on the BAA chart at mag. 6.66.
Another sighting of Uranus this morning, as follows:
18/07/71: Awoke rather late this morning, 0371-0350 BST. Uranus and all the field stars (I.e. The asterism containing delta, zeta, tau and 63 in Aries and the fainter asterism of rho, RZ, pi and 40 Arietis and the sigma to omicron stars with T1223.1988.1 and T1223.1989.1 (at mag. 7.5) between sigma and omicron, and of course Uranus, all well above the tree when observed from the bedroom window as dawn beginning to brighten the sky. Used 8x42 monocular on tripod c/w pistol grip and 10x42 monocular (handheld), both through the bedroom window glass. At the beginning, Uranus glimpsed in 6x21 Pentax monocular too. Very clear sky. (obs.# 1523) regards maf.
michael feist
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Re: Return of Uranus

Post by michael feist »

Observed Uranus again this morning 19th July, from the bedroom window at 0255-0310 BST. Much as previous observation. Given continuing clear skies ( transparency was not as good this morning and when I looked out and saw the Moon setting much earlier it was very orangey- red), should be able to follow Uranus each morning. Regards maf.
michael feist
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Re: Return of Uranus

Post by michael feist »

Tuesday 20/07/21: Very warm night. Awoke at 0200 BST, and Uranus was hidden behind the trees, so grabbed the 10x42 monocular, donned shorts, tee-shirt and sandals and walked around to the park. Low down, transparency was a bit poor but was just able to pick out the brightest field stars and Uranus. On returning home, waited till 0242 BST, when the planet was higher and free of the trees, and well visible from the bedroom window using 8x42 and then 10x42 monoculars on the tripod, and followed until 0300 BST. Transparency was now much improved and by mounting the monoculars on a tripod, was also able to see an additional fainter field star between and below T1223.1989.1 and omicron, making omicron. Uranus, T1223.1988.1, T1223.1989.1 and this 8th magnitude (?) star into a roughly-shaped pentagon or circle. This fainter star appears on map 99 of Uranometria, almost on the +15°Declination line and nearly half way between RA 02h 44m and RA 02h 48m. (identified from BAA chart as T1223.1746.1 at magnitude 7.91) (obs.#1525). Regards maf.
michael feist
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Re: Return of Uranus

Post by michael feist »

21/07/21: 0230-0244 BST, a very warm night, rather poor transparency low down, but managed to locate Uranus, omicron, sigma and that 6.7 magnitude star above the tree, using 10x42 monocular on a tripod (and also just about in 8x42 handheld) from the bedroom window. When tripod mounted it is much easier to get an accurate focus on the faint starry spots. Later on, somewhat foggy but clearer by sunrise. (obs.# 1526). Regards maf.
Last edited by michael feist on Wed Jul 21, 2021 2:26 pm, edited 2 times in total.
jeff.stevens
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Re: Return of Uranus

Post by jeff.stevens »

michael feist wrote: Wed Jul 21, 2021 6:04 am When trios mounted it is much easier to get an accurate focus on the faint starry spots.
I had a spell last year leaving my 10x50 monocular set up on a heavy duty Manfrotto tripod, with a ball joint head. It was fabulous to use, even though the optics weren't the best quality. It's great when we get a spell of dry weather and there's no need to worry about leaving kit out.

Best wishes, Jeff.
michael feist
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Re: Return of Uranus

Post by michael feist »

I have a Manfrotto 190XDB tripod with a 390RC2 head. The 10x42 and 8x42 Hawke ED monoculars with the standard 1/4 " camera threads is fitted to this using a chromlives Camera handle support grip - which looks like a rubber bicycle handle-grip. All very solid and firm. Great for observing anything fairly low down but as the monoculars are "straight through" but tricky if viewing when high up in the sky. Many of my observations are made through the bedroom window (as you will have noticed) so this is no great problem. Good for birdwatching too. Regards mike
michael feist
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Re: Return of Uranus

Post by michael feist »

22/07/21, Thursday: About 2pm, conditions of transparency were very poor, with the Moon appearing as a pale red-brown fuzzy blob with no surface detail or exact phase visible in the monocular. However half-an-hour later, by about 0225 BST, there was some improvement and the main stars of the two field asterisms and sigma, omicron and Uranus, and later the 6.6 nearby star, were visible from the bedroom window using, as usual, the Hawke 10x420minicular on the tripod. Followed until 0253 BST, and went back to bed. (obs.#1527). Regards maf.
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