Wednesday, May 29, 2013

A Schmidt-Cassegrain in Our Kitchen

My husband Wayne is an enthusiastic amateur astronomer. He has three telescopes, a Meade ETX125 (125 millimeter) Maksutov-Cassegrain, a Meade LX90 8-inch Schmidt-Cassegrain, and a Edmond Astroscan (for fun).

The LX90 has been a fixture in our cabin's kitchen for several years. On clear nights, Wayne takes it out to the corner of the deck for dark night observations. We have a small slice of the sky to view from Hole in the Wall, but the seeing conditions are excellent. Both telescopes have the Autostar computer-driven goto feature. That's really handy for finding some of the more distant objects. The ETX125 has recently moved from our condo to the cabin small storage room. There was so much light pollution in town, we decided it was better to have both models handy up the lake.

I used Wayne's telescope to take some Moon and Jupiter shots through the lens. In the future, I hope to take some more, but I need really bright objects for my little Canon digital camera to work.

One of my most memorable telescope experiences was with the Pomona Valley Amateur Astronomers. They booked an observing session at the Mt. Wilson Observatory's on the 60-inch telescope for the night. Not only is the scope massive, but it is a part of history. The observatory was founded in 1904 and in 1908 the 60-inch scope was installed. When it was built by George Ellery Hale in 1908, it was the largest telescope in the world. That night we saw Jupiter, Saturn and its moon Titan, a globular cluster, several planetary nebula and distant galaxies. It was quite a night!

Want to know more about our unique lifestyle in a floating cabin on Powell Lake in Coastal BC? Visit the category called "Float Cabin Living," or read Up the Lake written by my husband Wayne. -- Margy

14 comments:

  1. Telescopes are fantastic. I'm just not sure I could keep myself awake late at night to view the sky :)

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  2. What a great post. I wish I had a powerful telescope. Carver, ABC Wed. Team

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  3. I enjoyed this blog post a lot - after reading "Off the Grid" by your husband I enjoy learning more about your life at Hole in the Wall. That photo of the moon is amazing - I use my big camera and a tripod, had never heard of using a camera with a telescope.

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  4. That would be so much fun, Margy. Our "across-the-street" neighbour has a telescope and sometimes he brings it out to his driveway & lets us take a look through.

    Leslie
    abcw team

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  5. I think you little Canon did a wonderful job capturing the moon!

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  6. That is an interesting hobby. Great moon shot.

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  7. How wonderful that you chose telescope! It's such an interesting instrument. The stars are so fascinating, space is endless , at least that 's what we think, but there is so much to learn.
    Thank you for this post.
    Wil, ABCW Team.

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  8. What a great hobby, and also so interesting seeing Creation up close and personal.

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  9. that is one serious TOY!
    ROG, ABC Wednesday team

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  10. Wow now that's some equipment! Great shot of the moon with your Canon. Sounds like an interesting place where you guys live. Thank you for visiting my space and I look forward to visiting yours often, I am your newest follower.

    Have a great day!
    Jen

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  11. Your post brought back great memories of sky watching as a kid. I could name every constellation in the sky. Not anymore.

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  12. Loved your post - would love to be able to see the planets and moon a lot closer! Great shot of the moon.

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  13. Terrific post, and your telescope pic was great! I am intrigued by the night skies, but haven't invested in a telescope yet, I bet our viewing range is limited like yours, especially this time of year. Our trees are so full they block out a bit of the sky.

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  14. What a delightful hobby! I'd love one!

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