Sunday, January 24, 2010
Mars is approaching opposition meaning it is in the opposite side of the sky from the sun and the closest it will be to Earth this year. It's not a very good opposition this time due to Mars being in an elliptical orbit.
This was my first attempt with my 8" telescope. I was hoping for more detail, but it turned out I was looking at a fairly 'blank' side of Mars. You can easily see the polar cap made up of mostly frozen carbon dioxide.
We had another clear night (Feb 11, 2010)) and I was able to get a shot in before yet more high clouds rolled in. This time it was a little underexposed and if I'd had more time would have taken some spectacular images. But this was the best I could manage this time.
Compare it to the CalSky model of what it should have looked like.