Mars was going to cross the meridian early in the night, so I started dragging the equipment out shortly after sunset. I wanted to give the OTA plenty of time to thermally equalize before trying to image Mars.
The sky was gloriously clear.
I started the video capture. I let it run for six minutes. I was happy to have this capture completed; I would have something to show for this session, at least.
Astrospheric, my go to site for astronomy weather predictions, claimed that it was going to cloud over in a couple of hours.
"Nah, that can't be right," I thought. The sky was gorgeous. The Milky Way was brightly overhead.
As I connected the imager to the laptop, I looked over to the western horizon and saw a wisp of a cloud bank very low in the sky.
I pointed the telescope at Mars, attached the imager, and started FireCapture. After getting Mars into focus, I took another peek at the western horizon. "Hmmm. That is a fast moving bank of clouds."
|FireCapture and Mars|
I spent some more time perfecting the focus and then started another six minute video capture.
About four minutes into the capture, Mars started playing peek-a-boo through the clouds.
I did manage to get enough Mars data, though.
At this rate, we are not far from Mars just appearing as a red dot in the sky.