Blog for Wednesday 25th July 2012
Determined to get something down on paper for M20, I made sure that I kept awake so I could get the scope onto the nebula before it dropped too low, this was a balancing act between the altitude of M20 and a slowly darkening sky to the south. It had been a busy evening with a late return from work, number 1 son to be collected from football practice, a harmonica lesson and then watering duties at both the allotment and in the garden, by the time this was concluded I didn’t have too long to wait. Well I got it after a bit of star hoping a ‘sync’ing’, unfortunately it is a large nebula and my FOV even with a 0.5x focal reducer in place is only around 20’ x 20’ where as the Trifid nebula is half a degree (Trifid (tri-3) actually means divided into 3). I therefore concentrated on the central region which has 2 bright stars very close together and work from there, so my sketch may not be, indeed is not, reflective of your usual CCD image of the popular nebular, take a look at my sketch here.
And so to bed, again into the early hours, the sleep deficit is starting to build and make itself felt!