Stories From the Night of the Planet Parade at Aperture Telescopes’ Astro-Facility.

It turns out that there are many short stories from the 2-3 hour All Planet Dawn Observation.

It turns out that there are many short stories from the 2-3 hour All Planet Dawn Observation.

1. Mr. Sethi, an active retired gentleman, arrived much before time and stayed till Mercury. Initially he seemed like a novice when he asked “What all will we be seeing?”, but soon he was handling the biggest telescope on the terrace – the 20-inch Aperture Telescope, and he was quite adept at it. Not a single moment he left the telescope alone, and was showing the planets to all present.

2. Young Surya Chhabra brought along her 8-inch Dob which she has built on her own, just completed last month at our facility. It was her first real night under the stars with her newly built telescope. You cannot imagine the incredulous look on her face, when she found Uranus in her scope, manually hopping just above the crescent Moon. The finely built telescope showed the disk of far away Uranus as well as the bluish-green colour.

3. We saw ALL the planets, yes all eight planets. It was a very short observation, starting at 3am till 5am at about civil twilight time. The date being near the June Solstice, the Sunrise was quite early, at 5:24 am. Such summer nights in the northern parts of India tend to be hazy, cloudy, not at all good for astronomical observations. Daytime temperatures before the observation night were running around 42°. Turns out that our observation night was extremely clear, stars were out brightly even in this suburban location of Manesar. We saw a couple of deep sky objects too. Ring Nebula, Dumbbell nebula were easily visible. No one had high hopes for Mercury, but turns out it was easily visible in the telescope finder at the time of civil twilight, and that fully completed the ALL Planet Parade!

4. A lady who had come with preteen kids. She was the keenest observer. Her words while looking up through the eyepiece described what she saw – Titan and three other satellites very close to Saturn (Rhea, Tethys & Dione), she saw the shadow of Saturn on the rings behind, the shadow of the rings on the planet as well as Cassini Division in the rings. Nothing short of astounding, and she was watching Saturn for the first time through a telescope.

All in all a very interesting observation, short but full of short stories.

Watch our for our next observation – The Largest Full Moon of 2022!

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