Tag Archives: Io

Jupiter and one of it’s moons! Again!!

Jupiter, and to its left Io, I think. March 16, 2012

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So the big white splotch fringed in crimson and magenta is the planet Jupiter, and I believe the faint blob to its left is it’s moon Io.  The faint dot to the right might be Ganymede, but the more I think about it the more I think its a background star.  It is more point-like and less of a fuzzy blob, which implies it’s astronomically further away.   🙂

Can you believe I pulled this off again??  Well I can’t!!  As amazed as I am that my camera can do this, it is still basically a point-and-shoot with no manual focus.  That is fine, until the auto-focus gets confused.  The above is an enlargement of Jupiter from the one frame out of seven that the camera did not insist on defocusing to the opposite extreme.

Here is what I enlarged the above from, Jupiter and Venus in conjunction March 16, 2012:

Jupiter and Venus in conjunction, March 16, 2012. Jupiter top left, Venus lower right.

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Last, here’s another very cool Jupiter/Venus conjunction photo taken by Marek Nikodem:

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Jupiter, by Jove!!

Venus and Jupiter are in conjunction these days, meaning they’re about 3 to 5 degrees apart in the western sky at night.  Very easy and very cool to see them.  I’ve been seeing them up there the past several nights and last Tuesday night I thought, what the heck!  I’ll take a picture!  I figured it’d just be two dots, but I would know what they were when it popped up in my screen saver and knowing I had seen them with my own eyes would be so cool all over again.  🙂  Here’s the picture:

Jupiter on the left and Venus on the right; Conjunction of March 13, 2012

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But here’s where it gets really cool.  I took three frames with tripod and auto-timer, not really sure how well they’d turn out, then packed it in and went back inside.  Looking at them on my computer I noticed some suspicious specks…  and if I had not seen the same specks in all three frames I never would have believed it, but I actually captured some of Jupiter’s moons!!

Enlargement from the photo above of Jupiter, Io, and Europa I think, March 13, 2012

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According to this, I believe the speck just above the large blob (which is Jupiter) is Io, and the one above that is Europa.  This is with just my camera — not a telescope!  My camera is a Nikon Coolpix S4 — not even a DSLR with a serious lens, but what I guess you could call a ‘souped up’ snapshot camera…  I’ve never seen another camera design like it.  It has a focal length of 38-380mm, or 10x optical.  I was at max optical zoom for these shots of course.  There’s more digital zoom on top of that, but I… never go there.

I am so impressed all over again with my little 7 year old camera…  I was impressed when I bought it that I could just about fill the frame with the moon!  I mean Jupiter!!  And two of its moons!!  How cool is that?!?

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