Guerilla astronomy

The weather forecast for the coming days shows some chances of partly clear skies at night, but the odds are not very good.

As usual.

My 20 cm Newton is kind of bulky, and not the type of instrument one quickly sets up to observe through gaps in the clouds (I don’t have it permanently mounted, have to carry it outside for observing). No, for nights such as tonight, I rather prefer my 15×70 binoculars and my 90mm Maksutov-Cassegrain, small instruments that are easily and quickly set up in my backyard.

90mm f/13.9 Maksutov with 8x50 finder. The telescope has a quite decent limiting magnitude of 12.4 with my 6.7 mm Explore Scientific eyepiece, even when observing from my urban location.

In a number of minutes, one is set up to observe. The pair of 15×70 binoculars is a fast instrument, and the 90mm Maksutov-Cassegrain reaches 12, even 12.4 on a good night (from my urban location). I use the same 8×50 finder with the Mak and with the 20 cm Newton, which speeds up starhopping. It is mounted on a Triton alt-az mount which is sufficiently stable, even at 185x.

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