July 2015 Skynotes: Saturn

21st July 2015
Saturn at this time can be found in the constellation of Libra and very low in the sky about 20.5º above the horizon making it slightly difficult to observe because of atmospheric disturbance.

The image was taken in very poor seeing conditions, gusting winds and clouds rolling in and out all causing the planet to dance around all over the screen.

An IR pass filter >650nm was used to attempt to reduce the turbulence. As the seeing was so poor no attempt was made to capture in colour. It was however quite surprised to get such a reasonable result considering the conditions.

In this image North is up and the Cassini Division (gap between Outer ring A and Ring B) can easily be seen and just possible to see the shadow of the rings on the planet. Slight banding can be made out on the main body of the planet together with darker area of the polar cap.

Saturn is a stunning ringed gas giant and the 6th planet in our solar system. The rings are fairly open at this time making it rather spectacular. It is easily seen with the naked eye being the brightest object in that constellation and easily found. Even in the poor conditions of tonight still worth looking at.

Bob Sayer

Location: HCO remote outpost _ Cornwall ;80)
Latitude  50º06'19.0" N
Longitude 005º23'00 W
Altitude 68.9 feet (21m)

Image details:
Captured: 2015-07-21
Celestron NexStar 11” GPS Alt/Az @ f/10.0
Imaging Camera - Celestron Skyris132M b/w camera
Guiding -  Non – Mount tracking
Filters: Edmond Optics >650nm IR pass filter
Captured with Firecapture 2.4 and processed in  Astrostacker, Registax and Photoshop.