This evening is cold, very cold. The advantage is that it’s cold due to there being no clouds! So, wheeled out the telescope to cool down with the plan of looking for this comet that a canadian magazine I got alerted me to about a month ago. It’s supposed to be brightening and the poriton of the sky was very accesible from my backyard, so seemed like a good time to try it again.
The “aligning” of the scope has always been troublesome before, but tonight with such a clear view I thought I’d give it another try. Rigel was first and not a problem, then Procyon (again not a problem) and suddenly it was happy! This was a momentus occassion! It’s first test was saturn and it went straight there – no messing, did not pass Go or collect £200 – just showed me Saturn.
Armed with this tool I then quickly surfed to find the place to look for Machholz, eventually ending up here. Armed with the RA & Dec I went back to the Autostar, entered the values, fumbled a couple of times getting it to actually perform the GoTo, but when it did there was the fuzzy mass of the comet! Incredible.
My photographing isn’t up to any real level of achievement and the LPI isn’t really able to cope with such faint objects, so no piccies from me, but there are plenty out there. Try here, or here for more of a story.