Observing 28./29.3.2014

Date: 28./29.3.2014
Time: 00:00-02:00
Observing site: Stormälö, Parainen, Finland
Instrument: L 102/1000mm

NELM: 6.4
SQM: 21.21
Darkness of the background sky: 1
Seeing: 2
Transparency: 1
Weather: Clear sky, calm, no Moon, no snow, dry air, -3 °C

Objects observed: SS Cyg, Messier 5

In the end of March I finally had a chance to do some deep sky -observing again! In the night between 28th and 29th of March I headed to my observing site in Parainen. Observing conditions during that night were perfect: the sky was absolutely clear, the Moon was absent and it was calm and the air was dry, so there was no condensation problem as usually is the case! It was also pleasently warm, temperature was only 3 degrees below zero! During this winter we haven’t had much winter at all, and that has been the case also during March 2014. During mid March, there was snow on the ground for couple of days, but in late March all snow had melted away!

During this wonderful night I observed dwarf nova SS Cyg and globular cluster Messier 5 in Serpens. This time I noticed SS Cyg to be in outburst, and it’s brightness was about 8,6 magnitudes.

Messier 5 is a famous globular cluster in the constellation of Serpens, and more precisely Serpens Cauda, the Head of the Snake. I observed this cluster with my 4” refractor. With my instrument, the cluster appeared as a bright, concentrated cluster, which gets brighter towards the core. The cluster is resolved nearly to the core. There is a relatively bright star in the western edge of the cluster. The apparent visual diameter of the cluster is roughly 10′. This is a great target for visual observations, also with smaller telescopes!

Messier 5 observed with 4'' refractor
Messier 5 observed with 4” refractor

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