Roger Samworth

Playing with the Pleiades (M45)

Last night, from the window-sill, I went comet hunting (ultimately unsuccessfully!)

I set up the PD camera with the (£25) 50mm f/1.4 lens (no telescope) on the window-sill, and since I haven’t used that for a while, went looking for a target in order to set it all up. Spotted the Pleiades, not ideally located in the window (right in the corner), but given Ken’s recent splendid image, thought I would give the box Brownie (!) version a go.

Here is the result, after a total exposure of around 200 seconds and a bit of GIMP-ery.

Mercury – a challenge

Having got excited about seeing Mercury from the window-sill the other morning, I had a rummage through my notebooks to see if I had ever observed Mercury telescopically.

Amongst other observations, I turned up these – done when I was somewhat younger! (the first 16 years ago!). The sketches are laterally transposed.

So, has anyone managed to capture an image of Mercury’s phase? (Weather forecast isn’t too good for this apparition). Its greatest elongation is on December 15th.








up these

Dawn from the window-sill – – -04/12/2018

Dawn is getting pretty interesting for the next few days with Mercury now making an entrance. As an extra bonus, the Moon was there today too.

In the first image (at 06:46 UT) you can see Venus, the Moon, and Spica.

The next images are a bit later (at 07:02 UT), and Mercury has now risen. The images were acquired with my Canon SX610HS snapshot camera, and the inset of Venus with the 80mm f/5 refractor + 2X X2 barlows  + PD camera.


The next week or two is a good opportunity to observe Mercury. Binoculars will help. Some people heve never seen it!