The forecast did not look great for planetary imaging, but being anxious to start getting ready for the planets as the come to opposition over the next four months, I put the Meade on the mount today and set it up with the ASI178MC for OSC captures of the moon.
Seeing was horribly bad, but that could have been because I was shooting over the roof of the cottage. I have been wanting to capture OSC data on the Littrow Valley just after sunrise, but I think that capturing the Moon at this phase is always going to be difficult due to its low placement and relative to the cottage. Maybe I’ll have to settle for a capture when the Moon is just one day older.
There was no dew or surface winds during this part of the session.
Since I would be losing the moon behind the cottage rather quickly, I needed to start shooting before the sky was dark enough to support a polar alignment. Expecting this and knowing that I had left polar alignment in a bad state the last time that I tried working on guiding, I got the best smartphone alignment that I could while I was changing scopes. It turned out to be pretty good. There was very little drift for me to manually guide out.
Setup, start up, and target acquisition all went smoothly. I noticed some backlash in Ra when the scope would appear to keep moving at the end of a slew. I think that Dec is pretty good.
I ran captures on Littrow Valley, the Theophilus/Cyrillus/Catharina crater triplet, Smirnov Dorsa, Crater Proclus and Mare Crisium, Craters Hercules and Atlas, and the north polar region.
The initial look at the data suggest that I will not be able to do much with it.
I put the ASI290MM on the scope for capturing planets and cam back inside at 1030. I set an alarm for 0145, but I almost didn’t wake up. I was outside before 0200, and it was cloudy. I checked again at 0300 with the same result, so I shut down and went inside for the night.