6/7/2003: Foothill Park

by Rich Neuschaefer

Merek, excellent Lunar observing report! Thanks.

The PAS had a star party at Foothill Park. There were 8 or 10 scopes. The seeing was a little soft shortly after sunset but got better between 9 pm and 10 pm. I had my new AP 130mm f/8.35 APO refractor. The seeing was good enough to give nice images of the moon with a 5.2 mm Pentax SMC-XL. Before the sky started to fog over I could see the beginning of Rimma Birt. It would have been interesting to see the full length Rimma Birt when it is just past the Terminator.

We could see Hadley's Rill, all of the lower section and part of the curved upper section.

I had the Rukl atlas but with all the activity going on it was a little hard to spend as much time at the eyepiece as I would have liked. I wanted to let other people have a look too. It would have been fun to go page by page in Rukl along the Terminator and compare it to the view through the eyepiece.

Jupiter showed some detail in the SEB but it was just too low for the seeing to be good enough to use much more than about 150x.

About 10:20 pm the seeing was a little softer but still quite good. I tried splitting Porrima. With something less than 200x, I could see a first defraction ring. I kicked up the power way up. I'm not sure which TV Powermate I used along with the 7mm Pentax. The view was now a little fuzzy, I couldn't see a first defraction ring but it was east to see that there were two Airy discs connected like a snowman. I think I was using the 5x Powermate. That would give a magnification of 775x. ;-) I want to try it again if the seeing is a little better. I should have thought to try Porrima a little earlier in the evening.