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Observing planets: optimising your views

1808 ratings | 280811 views
Getting consistently good views of planets and other targets in the night sky can seem a bit hit and miss to the new telescope user. In this video we look at a couple of the most basic variables that can affect the resolution and detail seen in planetary observation. We also explain how and when to address the target to optimise image quality with any telescope. Presented by Robert J Dalby FRAS for The Astronomy and Nature Centre Produced by DB Video Services for Astronomy and Nature TV
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Text Comments (209)
Russell Schiwal (1 month ago)
Where does he get all those wonderful toys?
M. Alkassim (2 months ago)
Brilliant information thanks
XPFTP (2 months ago)
dual pane windows give 2 images also.. so your scope always loooks out of focus... i did the winter new scope inside thing. for 3 weeks not knowing learning.. why my scope 12 inch dob would not focus at all sharp.. dual pane windows. soooo be aware of that. dont stop enjoyin the sky form inside if it works for u . but know that the windows do take away form bein outside.
starastronomer (2 months ago)
The thumbs down are from people that don't have refractors 🙄
Turbinator (3 months ago)
I was trying to do nighttime astronomy, and oh man I regretted it after 30 min, I live in Canada and it is currently -30, and it's been like this for about 2 weeks now, hopefully it'll be over soon!
eweepurburger (3 months ago)
At the age of 50, my interest for this hobby has rocketed....I'm so excited about getting my NexStar slt130 in action. Your presentations are wonderful..... So helpful and are inspiring me further. I've been looking for one of those orrery's (orreries?) for years... They look so amazing. Thanks!
Arthur Wiegman (4 months ago)
The first telescope has no counter weights, that is not good example for using a telescope in the video.
Astronomy and Nature TV (4 months ago)
Hi Arthur. Had we drawn special attention to the mount as an exemplar your comment would have some merit. But we didn't. The mount you are referring too ( which I am quite familiar with because 20 years ago I spent 15 months thinking about little else and designed every teeny tiny little part of it - and there are only two of them in the world) has a counterbalance shaft that is 800mm long and 50mm in diameter and weighs 13kg. The 8" refractor it's carrying, though on the large size by amateur standards, has a plastic fibre tube and dew shield and is very light and the weight of it is comfortably offset by just the shaft on its own. I don't know old you are but the creditable use of a real name suggests you are not a teenager - but I still hope you can learn from this. You ain't the only catfish in the sea and it's a good idea to find out something of the facts of the case before making confident but erroneous assertions in public like this. If it had needed a counter weight, you can rest assured I would have fitted one. Thank you for allowing me to clarify this point. KR RJD A&NTV
Magic Rojava (5 months ago)
Damn that shit is huuuge!!
BigDaddyCool42 (5 months ago)
What kind of telescope is that and How much was that telescope?
John Haughton (6 months ago)
Thank you that was useful. Indoor astronomy ;-)
mnpd3 (7 months ago)
I don't see but two or three nights per year where the seeing is really great. Of course I don't observe every night, even if that were possible.
Eric Romkes (7 months ago)
3:00 after the barber visit.
ppgk92 (9 months ago)
Fake
Fred Cink (6 months ago)
Are you ever embarrassed about being SSOOO shamefully uneducated, abysmally ignorant, LAUGHABLY stupid and pathetically delusional? Go ask your mommy to change your diaper you mentally defective moron.
AntPDC (11 months ago)
You make the most excellent videos for tyro astronomers. Thank you.
Daniel Frederikson (11 months ago)
Did Edmond Hillary have oxygen in 1952?
Astronomy and Nature TV (11 months ago)
Hi Daniel - yes he did and I don't think anyone was silly/brave/young enough to attempt an ascent without oxygen until the late 1970s (and perhaps Lee Mallory did it too - before taking the quick route back down). But since then the scope of exploration has narrowed somewhat, much as the scope of absurdity has broadened. I imagine folk today shinny up Everest without ropes, tools, boots etc, but of course, clutching their phone, in an attempt to be first for something - anything. KR A&NTV RJD
King's (1 year ago)
Thats not a telescope.. But the Russian S400 missile!
mr chawla (1 year ago)
Nice video Pls watch my video i have just bought a 60mm telescope have a look i m sure u will like it just have a look. thanks
Kofi Boakye (1 year ago)
Wow the amount of lost people is unbelievable the planots can’t be seen like those pix because they are CGI pictures. You will never see them like that ever in reality
mikedelhoo (10 months ago)
+Astronomy and Nature TV Epic (and quite appropriate) response!
Heed the Seen (10 months ago)
Zoom cams see planetary features too. Telescopes zoom even more.
Well thanks for those pearls of wisdom. Neither of images we started the video with are CG 'artworks'. They were both recorded by a camera on an orbiting space telescope. However, the standard of images recorded by amateurs in the last ten years is now very close to even these outstanding examples (For instance, if you can escape from viewing mentacidal twaddle in your social-media-bubble for a moment, take a look at the outstanding planetary work of Damian Peach). A great many people have seen views in the eyepiece of a telescope, in their back yard/gardens, that are surprisingly close to the resolution shown in the photos we used - just not for very long. In fact I'm one them. I've seen a great many of the details shown in the photos, not in such a lasting and settled manner it's true - only a photo can deliver that - but always with the added drama of seeing the real thing with the living eye. And no picture, not even one taken from an orbiting telescope, can match this: a picture is always just a picture after all. Your groundless convictions have added another 5 Kilobytes to the Zettabytes of pointless bilge that the internet is straining under. Be a sport - find out a little bit about how things work before lambasting us and our viewers with your very poorly informed opinions - it's embarrassing for everyone involved. (PS: as ever at times like this, I'd like to remind you that this is not the start of a correspondence - any reply beyond a cheery 'OK, I'm sorry, thanks for the friendly advice' won't reach the screen as asinine twaddle is already very well represented on YouTube and me denying you your entitlement to inflict another dollop of it on the rest of us won't imperil Western Civilisation much, if at all. So save those fingers.). KR RJD A&NC
Billy Sugger (1 year ago)
Wow! That second ‘scope, was that made by Rob Miller from Astro Systems in Luton, many years ago? I have a 6” f6 by him and that alt-az pier, though I usually use it on a Vixen equatorial. Marvellous little ‘scope with superb mirrors by David Hinds. Performs like an 8” SCT. Nice to see one.
Billy Sugger (1 year ago)
Astronomy and Nature TV I remember asking Rob why there were no easy collimating adjustments. His reply said all you need to know about his engineering philosophy. If you build in adjustment, it will go out of adjustment. And he’d built optics for satellites where there wasn’t an option to go and adjust them, and had to be made right. So he made his telescopes the same way. Superb lesson I’ve tried to apply to my electronics designs ever since.
Hi there, and well spotted. It is indeed a Rob Miller/Astro Systems creation. It's as much about what they left out as what they put in that made them great scopes. There's an attitude of economy and minimalism in the design, and it's done with a near perfect touch. Get it wrong and the instrument is stark, utilitarian - and lumpen to use. Get it right, as they did, and the result is a simple and beautiful instrument that is a lasting pleasure to use. KR RJD A&NTV
Very old vide
Well, the fat beardy Englishman presenting it all is certainly well past his best-before date, but the planets haven't changed much since 2012 - and neither have the optical principles that govern the telescopes we observe with. And the factors of atmospheric seeing that do so much to limit what we can actually see from the Earth's surface - they too remain unchanged. So I think the vid(e) still stands as nominally useful. Kind regards RJD A&NTV
As-2017 (1 year ago)
you got a huge telescope.
Reality Check (1 year ago)
Excellent Video! Makes me want to buy a telescope :)
John Doe (1 year ago)
I often practice window astronomy! I draw the line at around minus -25 F or so. Not uncommon for us to have minus -50 and much colder windshields! Record, minus -70 F! That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it! Thanks for the video!
fnersch (1 year ago)
Something new is about to happen. It's called the Unistellar eVscope. This could revolutionize backyard observers. To learn more, just Google "Unistellar eVscope". They had a very successful Kickstarter campaign last fall (we raised $150,000 in only 4 minutes and $2.2 million in 28 days). The instrument should be available to the public in about 10 months.
rbrtck (11 months ago)
+fnersch It looks like a nice simulation of having a more powerful telescope by incorporating astrophotography (AP) equipment, but it's not really visual observation, and if I wanted to do the same thing, I could attach an AP camera to my telescope and view the results on my laptop screen instead of sticking my eye in an eyepiece pretending that I'm visually observing. Some people actually want to do the latter, which is why they do it despite AP cameras having been available for many years. If this new system makes AP easier for beginners, then that's great, and if it's very capable for the price, then that's even better, but the latter remains to be seen, and in any case let's not pretend it's anything other than what it is.
George Marquis (1 year ago)
No finder-scope or setting-circles ??   /G
Abhishek Rajak (1 year ago)
From where did you got that small solar system.??
Hi there, it came from a clockmaker in Devon, England (I think they are still going) but they stopped making this item some years ago now. KR RJD A&NTV
Tricky Trinklet (1 year ago)
The horizon is always flat and rises to the eye level of the observer. The curve is not visible. If you think you are seeing a curve then you are wrong.
Hi there, I'm not sure why you've posted this comment but you might want to bear the following in mind generally. The word 'horizon' is a very local and observer relational term and the local geography will often dictate the shape and profile of the horizon rather than the large-scale structure of the Earth. I live in a valley and my horizon is near and many metres above the roof of my house! So, on the contrary, if you think you've seen a curved horizon, you probably have - it's just not caused by the gross large-scale spheroidal structure of the Earth but by the local geography of the terrain. This is hardly surprising, when you bother to think about it, as the majority of people will struggle to see more than a trivial 120 to 160km in any one direction at best - seeing and weather conditions permitting. And far and away the majority of people will be observationally limited to a relatively small disk of terrain in the range of 40 to 80km in diameter - and whilst that might be a long way to walk for your baccy, it's a minor piece of real estate when it comes to planetary bodies. It would be like expecting a microbe sitting on a basketball to understand the shape and size of the of the ball based on the tiny 2mm disk of basketball surface he is sitting in the centre of. He may well declare the horizon flat, or curved, or amphibious-landing-craft-shaped if he likes - but who cares? The microbe's sample is far too small to be relevant. I once spent time studying the surface of an old ivory billiard ball with a standard lab microscope. The ball appeared smooth and near perfect in my hands, but in the eyepiece of the microscope, it became a continous violent landscape of jagged mountains and deep crevasses, far more violently scarred than the Moon or Mars. Scaled up the mountains were higher than Everest and the crevasses deeper by far than the Grand Canyon, and both vastly more numerous than such structures on the Earth. When it comes to appreciating planetary scale and dimensions, we are very small animals, sadly in every sense of the word, and we lack appropriate sensory experience and the guided imagination that flows from it. I hope this helps. KR RJD ANTV
JASPER EL SERIO (1 year ago)
Man that's a thicc telescope
Carlos Oliveira (1 year ago)
Man it took a long time to find a quality channel in the midst of all this flat earth and 144p garbage.
Notts boy24 (1 year ago)
Excellent tips! Thank you so much :)
SLAP Astronomy (1 year ago)
Very nice video. This is a good breakdown of some of the basics for new observers. Well done! Scott
Greg Jay (1 year ago)
You have your own little observatory! Wow, that sure is a handsome Tele, bet that set up put you back a few beans. I just ordered my first one a 500.00 refractor with go to cap. I think I'm already ready for an upgrade! Lol Nice stuff OIC you have a company. Is there any free software downloads for stacking photos?
Jorge Uoxinton (1 year ago)
This is the most instructive video on the subject, I have seen to date. Very clear, especially the warning about the primal time of the year to observe celestial objects. Many thanks for sharing.
mike johnson (1 year ago)
So cool dude I live in atlanta not many good place for a telescope I love astronomy
Frans Scharroo (1 year ago)
Makes me want my old astronomy  OMC back....wish I would not have sold it few years back. This video makes me want to go back to Leiden Univ. observ. where I was a member years ago.
filthy rych (2 years ago)
ty for this video.
MegaLegoguy182 (2 years ago)
Hey Robert do you carry Orion Telescopes or binoculars
GuyStuff (2 years ago)
Hi, what is the device called that you used to show the rotation of the planets? Thanks
mikedelhoo (10 months ago)
+FlatOut77 It's called an "orrery".
John Gray (2 years ago)
that's nice. but how do we see mercury in the night sky?
Heed the Seen (10 months ago)
We can see Mercury with the unaided eye only during the twilight period, since the inferior planet remains within only 28 degrees from the Sun.
Mad-Pilot (11 months ago)
Notts boy24 I saw it during the August 21st solar eclipse. It was quite amazing
Notts boy24 (1 year ago)
Hi there, it is not possible to see mercury in the night sky due to it's weird eccentric orbit. It is only visible for an hour or so before the sun comes up and again before the sun goes down. If your lucky enough to see a mercury transit which is very rare is a brilliant time to see and observe mercury using a special solar filter.
TBaker1964 (2 years ago)
There is NO curve of the earth you dumb ass, earth is flat, prove "curvature" and put it on a video, I'll send you one thousand dollars.
Heed the Seen (10 months ago)
TBaker1964 #Soundly and #RedsRhetoric might accept your bet.
Jim Connoy (2 years ago)
I keep wondering what us back yard astronomers can contribute to the world of astronomy
7wt (7 months ago)
Variable star research is a good place to contribute
Michael Lovell (7 months ago)
Jim Connoy seen someone find an exoplanet with their amatuer telescope.
AntPDC (11 months ago)
+ Alice By no means only NASA. On the contrary :)
Chassetter (1 year ago)
Many new comets are discovered by amateur astronomers. Variable star magnitude brigtness tracking by AAVSO too.
Gnome Queen (1 year ago)
Many discovers have been made by back yard astronomers like us! There is 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000+ stars in the sky. Nasa can NEVER find them all
Gary McKinnon (2 years ago)
I just got a small scope and i used it last night in our utility room, which is grouind floor, rear of the house and i had the heating off so it was a 3C difference from outside. I got some really good views of stars in Ursa Major.
Sanjay Mahajan (2 years ago)
Pass Sha they both are below $70
Pascha lolol GM (2 years ago)
Gary McKinnon how much money?
Sanjay Mahajan (2 years ago)
Pass Sha you can get Celestron travelscope 70 or 76/700 reflector telescope
Pascha lolol GM (2 years ago)
I wish i had a telescope any suggestions maybe?
mrspidey80 (2 years ago)
Wow! That orrery is absolutely gorgeous. Probably costs a fortune as well.
Johannes Clementsen (2 years ago)
I would say that the first Telescope is an APM telescope am I right,oh I tought it was an APM
Magiktcup (2 years ago)
Great video
Zyrant3 (2 years ago)
thanks so much!
Adi Abdulli (2 years ago)
what type of telescope is the first one???
starastronomer (2 months ago)
+Astronomy and Nature TV I had a D&G 8" f/12 refractor. When the atmospher cooperated gave killer planetary views.
Accumulated Sense (10 months ago)
Was that a modified dobsonian mount on the refractor?
Adi Abdulli (2 years ago)
+Astronomy and Nature TV thank you ;)
Hi there, the large instrument at the start of the video is a TMB 8" (200mm) refractor. KR A&NTV
Seferboy (2 years ago)
its really helpful video , thank you so much
SunuvaMitch (3 years ago)
Thank you. I'll be getting a new scope in a few months and I'm really interested in taking up astronomy.
TheGalacticWolf Playz (3 years ago)
I want a new telescope sooooooo bad but I don't have any money ;(
Lal Pal (4 months ago)
Iam saving money from last two month $$$$
Jessop Reacts (4 months ago)
There's always prostitution...
SH1974 (4 months ago)
To buy a used dobsonian telescope (I'd recommend 8" f/6) and some simple oculairs have never been less expensive...
Justa Christian (4 months ago)
+Romek Preszus 😂
Justa Christian (4 months ago)
Cut your neighbor's grass,and save up for a year and hope you live in a. Good neighborhood that will pay you the value of your time,have a financial blessing and i hope you get that new telescope😇
Anthony Evans (3 years ago)
I really found the video helpful. Thank you for posting!
Mark (3 years ago)
Thank you. Very useful
rob b (3 years ago)
your videos are by far the best !
pitthepig (3 years ago)
Your videos are great and I'm sure that will help a lot of people that are starting with their astronomy hobby, or maybe thinking about it and hesitating to do the first step.
Tcho Laury (3 years ago)
Thank u👍🏼
grahame belton (3 years ago)
Nice observatory in the background. I wish my garden was situated in such an open place.
BrandonFleming (2 years ago)
agreed
valor36az (3 years ago)
Great tips for observation thank you for making this video
ELMarTiLLO (3 years ago)
What method did you use to capture the images of Mars and how did you process them???
Justwantahover (2 years ago)
Go to a star party and ask them for a look through their telescopes. I BET that would be the LAST thing that you would ever do (and still claim "fakery"). lol
Justwantahover (2 years ago)
I got 14 things we can all see with our own eyes for globe earth evidence. e.g Planets directly observed through a telescope proves space to be true, so flat earth isn't true. I can see the Southern Cross constellation circle the south celestial pole (in stages) as I go out for a pee, throughout the night. Proof of two poles.There is no evidence for a flat earth that can't be easily explained.
MrPepsicola123 (3 years ago)
+Papi Chulo thats not actually mars, its just a simulation.
Mansamusa17 (3 years ago)
Can anyone recommend a 6x26 or 6x30 finderscope with a curved bracket?
E. Morriën (3 years ago)
Thank you verry much for the videos, i learn allot of it .
Sreeji Nair (3 years ago)
which telescope to capture orion nebula
Ricard Andrés (2 years ago)
ED80 to 120mm or something like a 200-300mm newt.
ThunderLips (3 years ago)
this is great. I'm glad I stumbled up your channel. cheers!
Sreeji Nair (3 years ago)
Which type of telescope will you recommend for Astro Photography?
Joshua Smith (3 years ago)
+Sreeji Nair I would recommend a refractor with a low f-ratio because it is a lot more forgiving if you don't have really good tracking. A newtonian type telescope is also really good because of it's size, but that increases the weight which can be a problem if you don't buy a pretty expensive mount. I would stay away from Schmidt Cassegrains or "SCT" type scopes because although they may provide really good views, the (normally) high f-ratio makes it really hard to photograph with. Do you have a german equatorial mount? If not, do you have one in mind that you want to get?
Mansamusa17 (3 years ago)
Depends what kind of astrophotography.
Ahmar Saeed (3 years ago)
I just learn so so much from every video here!
E. Morriën (3 years ago)
verry thanks for this posts.. i learn alot from it.
ruuub j (3 years ago)
What eyepieces should i use for my celestron nexstar 130slt to get the best magnification. I already have a 9mm and 25mm eyepiece but i wouldnt mind buyung another eyepiece or barlow.
ruuub j (3 years ago)
+Sotiris Krol the focal length is 650mm, i recently bought a 2x barlow lens ,but i still have to try it out.
Mansamusa17 (3 years ago)
What is your telescopes focal length?it is capable of somewhere around 280 times magnification
BarryHung22 (3 years ago)
Where can i get that orrery?
Mansamusa17 (3 years ago)
I don't know but Amazon should be a good start
Jerry Anstey (3 years ago)
well done
Jerry Anstey (3 years ago)
who are you?
+Jerry Anstey Vell, Robert's just zis guy, you know? KR RJD (With apologies to Gag Halfrunt)
George Ryan (3 years ago)
So how do you find out when a planets are closer to us? Is there any software or maps?
CapricornTingz (1 year ago)
George Ryan it's called a "orrery"...mini mechanical model of our solar system including all the zodiacs
Isaiah Schwartz (1 year ago)
George Ryan celestron's "eyes on the sky" app is great for this and free. I know it is on Apple devices, but I am not sure about androids
baal Itzar (3 years ago)
+George Ryan check out this page http://theskylive.com/planets
1.61803398875 (3 years ago)
When the planet or a star in zenith it is the best time to view it, unfortunately in my telescope the vertical angle is difficult to set up.
mycubehead (3 years ago)
stellarium has an addon which shows you when is the best time to view the object. It also shows when the object rises and goes down it that particular day/night
slap_my_hand (3 years ago)
Would it be possible to use a telescope through an open window, if there is no difference in temperature?  I wouldn't need to do that, because i have a large garden, but it would be nice to know this.
DirtyHarry G (3 years ago)
+StarTrek123456 When I visited Guatemala I noticed that a lot of homes in the rural areas didn't really have glass windows, just the window opening. Guatemala is considered tropical so I understand the reason for it. I would imagine that in a place like that, pointing your telescope out of the window wouldn't make a difference but in colder climates the mixing of hot and cold air at the open window would definitely cause the turbulence he mentioned and make focusing your telescope a pain in the rear.
Salvatore Cento (3 years ago)
excellent presentation! some of which i have been aware for some time.the big one is out of my reach i have a 6inch  f5 refractor on a dobsonian mount built by me, i have also some projects on the pipeline. what i would like to ask you is not about the 8 inch big boy but for the small reflector,mostly about the alt-azimuth mount,i like it very much could you please tell me if it is home made or commercial,if it is commercial could you tell me the maker and the model? thank you and keep up the good work.
I am a student of eighth grade from India. I want to what is the name of the tool you used to explain the planets position and is it commercially available ? Thanks.
Liam Cockcroft (3 years ago)
+sundararajaperumal Anandhakrishnan hmm, It's called an "Orrery" I am told.
Liam Cockcroft (3 years ago)
+sundararajaperumal Anandhakrishnan I would like to know this also? ta
Alan Radmall (4 years ago)
The Mars video is fantastic. I learned from this a great deal. My wife gave me a Celestron 80 lcm for Christmas an I have been battling to see anything worthwhile. I'm finding advice like yours excellent. Thank you very much.
shbitz (4 years ago)
Whats the name and model of the telescope in the begening when the gentleman starts to talk ?
Antreas Cy (4 years ago)
true
+Antreas Cy Well - everything has it's price I suppose, and you could buy a pretty good car and a few tankfuls of fuel for the cost of that scope and mount. I've compared the views from both - and each has its strengths (the car is very good for close-ups of the Earth for example) but the tiny mileage costs on the scope are out of this world. And who'd buy a car after it had done a trillion-billion miles? Kind Regards RJD
Antreas Cy (4 years ago)
+Astronomy and Nature TV do you know how much it cost?
shbitz (4 years ago)
+Astronomy and Nature TV thanks so much for your reply .cheers .
Hi and thanks for your query. The telescope is an 8" refractor by TMB and the mount is made by Astro Engineering, England (they only ever made two like this). Kind regards A&NTV
Soleez1991 (4 years ago)
Just out of curiousity, has anyone of you seen something with a Telescope beside a Planet?
Arthur Wiegman (4 months ago)
The moon, various deepsky objects and through a special filter the sun
Jeni Skunk (7 months ago)
Somewhat late in seeing this comment. As my flat gives me a fair view of Brisbane Airport, using my Sky-Watcher Heritage 130p, I sometimes view passenger jet aircraft on approach or departure. With my telescope, keeping an aircraft in view, using a 2x Barlow and a Sky-Watcher 15mm Kellner eyepiece, it's doable.
rbrtck (11 months ago)
+Soleez1991 Absolutely, many things. Unless you're observing under a very dark sky, most deep-space objects (DSOs) are tough to see with typical amateur telescopes, especially galaxies (except for the very closest ones), so even finding and observing them at all is a worthwhile challenge. That said, there are a good number of absolutely spectacular DSOs that are quite easy to find and observe in detail, even under a fair amount of light pollution. Open clusters are, next to Solar System planets and the Moon, are easiest type, and especially once you get them framed properly with the right eyepiece, are real beauties to behold. Check out the Pleiades (M45), the Double Cluster (NGC 869 and 884), the Wild Duck Cluster (M11), the Butterfly Cluster (M6), and the Ptolemy Cluster (M7), to name some of the more famous ones. You might have to wait for some of these at the moment unless you observe very early in the morning, but for now you can catch the Beehive or Praesepe Cluster (M44) shortly after sunset, and there are of course many more to see. Globular clusters are a bit harder to find and observe, and require a decent-sized telescope to resolve (at least 5-6 inches, thereabout), but keep observing them and eventually your eyes will adapt and reveal a very unique and stunning (yet subdued) sight and experience that photographs, no matter how brilliant and detailed, completely fail to capture. There are many of these, too, and some of the more famous are M13, M22, and if you're fortunate enough to be able to see it (since it is so far to the south), the "mother" of them all, Omega Centauri (NGC 5139). Then there are various types of nebulae, which are typically composed of glowing gases. They look like clouds, except of course that they are many light-years away and are enormous by human standards. One of the largest and brightest (and perhaps the most impressive of all as a combination of the two traits) is the Orion Nebula (M42). A couple of other large and bright ones would be the Lagoon Nebula (M8) and the Trifid Nebula (M20). A completely different kind of nebula is the planetary nebula, which is the remnant of a dead star of a class similar to that of the Sun. A couple of famous ones are the Ring Nebula (M57), which is fairly tiny but bright enough to be seen in even small amateur telescopes, and the Dumbbell Nebula (M27). By the way, there are narrowband filters that can help greatly with the contrast and visibility of nebulae--they're not cheap but they're worth their cost. Among galaxies, the only really easy ones under some light pollution would be the Andromeda Galaxy (M31) and the Triangulum Galaxy (M33). Other galaxies really need a dark sky, although there are some that can be glimpsed, barely, under suburban skies. And finally, we can also observe the Sun, although we have to be very careful about it. This should be common sense, but do NOT simply point your telescope at the Sun and look through it! Doing so could very well cause severe eye damage, including permanent blindness, almost instantaneously. You need a special solar filter in order to observe the Sun in white light in your regular telescope, and this will let you see sunspots in detail, along with granulation, faculae, and maybe some other features; this is also a great way to view the rare transits of Mercury and Venus. In addition, there are specialized solar telescopes that observe in very narrow wavelengths (hydrogen-alpha being the most common), which allows you to observe additional features, such as flares. I've personally done all of these things (and the Solar System planets and the Moon, of course) with a single telescope (plus a small hydrogen-alpha telescope). One more thing is that individual stars themselves can be interesting targets. Some are actually doubles that are a challenge to separate, such as Antares and Sirius, and some doubles are just pretty to look at because of the color contrast, such as Albireo. Another type of star some amateur astronomers enjoy observing is carbon stars, which are exceptionally colorful, deep-red stars, some being described as a "drop of blood in the sky." Check out La Superba (Y CVn), Hind's Crimson Star (R Leporis), V Aquilae, and T Lyrae (a personal favorite, despite it being so dim). I'm sure I haven't covered everything.
Voxle (1 year ago)
Yes. Deep Sky Objects lightyears away can be seen with telescopes.
dave101t (1 year ago)
yes, the moons are sometimes besides the planets...
Heli (4 years ago)
That was brilliant!
EagleLogic (4 years ago)
Cheers 
cubanson83 (4 years ago)
9 people are completely idiots!!!
krokobil12 (4 years ago)
Nice vid, thank you
Fred Moreau (4 years ago)
Yours is definitely bigger than mine! I'm talking about the refractor, of course! Cheers from Brittany!
ChinaLake100 (4 years ago)
+Astronomy and Nature TV I currently have a 20-60x60 Coated Optics Bushnell telescope. It is very small, very simple and old. It just has two wheels, one for the focus and the other for zooming. It doesn't zoom in a whole lot to be honest, at its max zoom it allows me to see craters on the moon more in-depth, but still small. I am starting to think it wasn't even made for looking at things in the night sky. No electronic features on it. I tried looking at Mars last night and it barely did anything to change its size, let alone allow me to see ANY features. Do you know of any not too expensive telescopes that will zoom in enough to allow me to see the rings of Saturn, and noticeable features(the poles, different surface colors) of Mars and Jupiter? I really want something that will allow me to see the planets quite clearly without something super-huge and super-expensive, and I would appreciate any advice.
Joshua Theron (4 years ago)
Whats your budget?
kharnak crux (4 years ago)
let the.. heat out?     i live in fuckin Florida.   we'd be letting the cold out XD
Ha! OK, point taken. Of course, as I'm sure you realise, it's the same problem - heat in or heat out. Observationally it's air turmoil through the observing aperture that will cause a severe reduction in the quality of the views. It's easy forget sometimes that not everyone watching is in wet chilly ol' England - thanks for reminding me. KR RJD
seedubyu (4 years ago)
Marvellous video, very concise and practical logical presentation but also I can feel your enthusiasm, thats what makes it great.  ps  I would loved to have seen more of that gorgeous looking BIG refractor!
Erhan Bayram (4 years ago)
Very nice and clean explanation. Thank you
IARRCSim (5 years ago)
I saw the rings of Saturn a couple nights ago aiming my telescope through a window.  I couldn't see any divisions in the rings, shadows, or surface detail but I preferred that over cold weather at 2am.
I heartily agree with your principle. Perhaps I should have said in the video; it's better to observe the night sky through a dirty window and a fly screen, than not at all! But just remember not to blame the scope for poor views. KR RJD 
VanMedia (5 years ago)
whats the program called? steralium?
a_wandering_silhouette (5 years ago)
stellarium
Quixpeed (5 years ago)
very useful info, thanks for sharing it.
CameronCosmos (5 years ago)
Thank you very helpful
CT2507 (5 years ago)
hey... did u ever try and look over the ocean? how far can u see ships with your telescope? and how far can u see at all over the ocean on a bright day? what is the limit that our atmosphere permits us to see when looking across, not up through it?
gabriel reyna (5 years ago)
I wonder what size this white refractor is. Looks beautiful. It must be incredible when looking at the moon and planets. Probably wouldn't even need high power eyepiece. I have a 4 inch f/15 refractor I enjoy I usually use often 12.5  f/6 dob.   Could the aperture be an 10 or maybe an 8? Just wondering.
david zdrojewski (4 years ago)
+Astronomy and Nature TV i remember when thomas beck was alive and built your telescopes' lens you are very lucky to have an 8" apo..i doubt he made more than 10 of them and they where 5.000$ in 1999 just for lens i think he made a #1 12" apo thats at some rich guys house in florida clear skies dave zdrojewski boston ny usa
Hi and thanks for watching. The telescope is an 8" (200mm) TMB - and you are quite correct, short focal length high-power eyepieces are not essential with this instrument. A&NCTV
Louis Olds (5 years ago)
What did you say the name of that planetary motion device was? Thanks!
Sub Optimal (1 month ago)
It's an orrery. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orrery
Ukraine2011 (5 years ago)
That little gold colored model he had on the table is cool
NACAM42 (1 year ago)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orrery
Olek Grisanowski (2 years ago)
Ukraine2011 How is it called? ✌🤔
abrakadabra (5 years ago)
Thank you, Sir! Great videos indeed, please keep up the good work.
mrict2002 (5 years ago)
Very interesting perspective of view to begin a healthy way of seeing heavenly bodies. May the force be with you and show more.
Rob Grealy (5 years ago)
All the videos by this chap are really superb. He explains everything really clearly. Cheers mate!
cosmictywlite (5 years ago)
Hi there, thanks for that information,I understand what you mean now !
Hi - No it's your choice, there's no imperative either way. You have a great GOTO mount there so why bother with the setting circles? The point we are labouring to make is that setting circles much under 200mm (8 inches) in diameter are of very limited utility. Clear skies A&NTV
Houston Haynes (5 years ago)
Where can I get an Orrery like the one in this video?
moglijp (5 years ago)
wow thats a big ass telescope

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