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Time-lapse photograph of Mercury, Jupiter, and an airplane taking off
|| 1/1/2009 || 6:40 pm || Comments Off on Time-lapse photograph of Mercury, Jupiter, and an airplane taking off || ||

6 second time-lapse photograph of Mercury (left), Jupiter (right), and an airplane taking off (top)

This evening marks the first time I’ve seen the planet Mercury in night sky. What makes this extra beautiful is Mercury, the smallest planet in the solar system, was next to Jupiter, the largest planet in the solar system. I have now have seen all of wandering stars known to the ancients.

Below I decided to digitally zoom in as far as I could and see what the time-lapse photograph would look like:

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Jupiter traveling through the night sky of Washington, DC
|| 8/3/2008 || 7:53 pm || Comments Off on Jupiter traveling through the night sky of Washington, DC || ||


Jupiter traveling through the night sky of Washington, DC from Nikolas Schiller on Vimeo.

Due to light pollution it’s very hard to observe the planets and stars at night in Washington, DC. However, Jupiter has been visible on the southern horizon this entire summer.

The video clip was taken on my back deck using a tripod and Canon SD750 digital camera set to time-lapse mode. A photograph of Jupiter was taken every two seconds for over two hours.

If you look closely, you’ll see a tiny ball in the lower portion of the screen. It goes invisible for a few seconds, which I believe was from a distant cloud, but for most of the video clip you can see Jupiter slowly transit the night sky.

I’ll have to check Stellarium to see when Mars is visible again because I’d like to try recording that planet as well. Maybe someday I’ll have a camera with better zoom controls so the planet doesn’t look like a spec of dust on the screen!

Related Space Entries:

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Staring at the Sun in Stellarium
|| 1/15/2008 || 12:34 pm || Comments Off on Staring at the Sun in Stellarium || ||

Screen grab of Stellarium with the constellations art layer turned on

Two screen grabs below with the azimuthal & equatorial grids turned on:

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Moon Mars Conjunction
|| 12/24/2007 || 3:06 pm || Comments Off on Moon Mars Conjunction || ||

Screen grab from the Astroprof’s Page (Image produced using Stellarium)

Last night my next door neighbor and I lugged the telescope to my rooftop to look at the night sky. It was an exceptional night for celestial observations too. My neighbor had been letting me borrow the telescope for the last 3 months and I must say its been an absolute pleasure looking off into the cosmos– even through the dense light pollution surrounding Washington, DC.

Last night’s conjunction was definitely a high point of my celestial viewings, followed closely by seeing Saturn. In the telescope, Mars was visible but rather hard to see because of the relative brightness of the moon! My neighbor commented on Mars, “Is that brown spot a storm?” I laughed and said that was probably the surface of Mars that he was seeing. What was really neat was watching the conjunction take place. Around dusk, Mars was on the left of the Moon and by 10pm he was on the other side of the Moon.

Below is some text copied from the Astroprof’s Page:

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The Daily Render By
A Digital Scrapbook for the Past, Present, and Future.

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Nikolas Schiller is a second-class American citizen living in America's last colony, Washington, DC. This blog is my on-line repository of what I have created or found on-line since May of 2004. If you have any questions or comments, please contact:

If you would like to use content found here, please consult my Fair Use page.

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