Three Days of AR 1024

Three Days of AR 1024

Active Region 1024 over a three day period
Sketch and Details by Balázs Benei

Name: Group 1024
Type: Sunspot
Location: Gyöngyös, Hungary
Date: 6-9th July 2009.

These are my first sketches of our star. Everybody is very happy that the Sun is waking up and shows us these spots. It was very interesting to observe the changes of the group, now they are invisible for us.
My equipment: 110/800 (4′) Newtonian reflector, 2x barlow, 10mm eyepiece, 160x magnification.

Yours sincerely
Balázs Benei

Plato in Shadow

Plato in Shadow

Lunar crater Plato in deep shadow
Sketch and Details by Giorgio Bonacorsi

Hi sketchers,all o.k.?

Last week, after bad weather days, the sky was clear and i decide to use my refractor 80/1000 for Crescent Moon. I placed my refractor in front of my home and the Moon was just over the trees, in this moment is very low but i can’t help drawing it.
I observe in eyepiece at 47,6x and decide to use 6mm lantanium for Plato and i made this sketch.
I hope you like it.

At next,clear sky at all.

Site:Pergola,Marche,Center Italy.
Moon phase:Crescent
Instrument:Refractor Kenko 80/1000
Eyepiece:6mm lantanium
Seeing:Good,no humidity no wind.

A Monotone Scoop of Neopolitan Ice Cream

Schickard and Lehmann

Lunar craters Schickard and Lehmann
Sketch and Details by Jeremy Perez

It’s hard to get used to the fact that the moon plays misery on DSO observations two weeks out of every month. I can see that my biggest interest leans toward those dim patchy things, but given a little time exploring the moon, it still turns out to be very rewarding. So I took some time this bright moonlit evening to explore some likely craters listed in the Astronomical League’s Lunar 100.

Schickard is a large crater on the western limb of the almost full moon. There is an intersecting crater on the north end that looks about 20% as big.The southwest floor has a series of ridges or cracks that run northwest to southeast. There is also a half-circle of craters on the western floor. On the east side floor, a distinct white patch is visible.

After getting past the dazzling array of contrasting crater-wall shadows, I noticed to my surprise that the floor of the crater gave the appearance of a monotone scoop of Neopolitan ice cream. The north half and southeast tenth of the crater floor were darker than the rest of the floor. These three distinct shaded areas didn’t owe their differences to some lucky angle of light, as their boundaries ran roughly parallel to the angle of the sun. Also very noticeable was a rough jumble of terrain outside the crater along the west-southwest rim. It was tough to sketch that and make it look like it belonged to the local terrain without spending an eternity linking it to continuing terrain further west. So it is what it is.


According to the The Moon Observer’s Guide, Schickard is one of the Moon’s largest craters at 227 km in diameter. Its walls rise 2500 meters above the floor. Its southwestern floor has been noticeably disrupted by debris thrown from the Orientale impact over 1000 km to the west. This debris carved valleys and chains of craters along this part of the crater. Periods of lava flooding have given the crater floor a multi-toned appearance with darker sections in the northern and southeastern sections–the most striking example of this on the Moon’s face.

The crater intersecting the north side of Schickard is Lehmann Crater. Lehmann is 47 km wide (20.8% the width of Shickard–hahah!) with 800 m walls.

Subject Schickard and Lehmann Craters
Classification Lunar Craters
Position Southwest edge
Phase/Age 12 days old
Size* Schickard Crater: (dia. 227 km);
Lehmann Crater (dia. 47 km)
Date/Time January 22, 2005 – 9:15 PM (January 23, 2005 – 04:15 UT)
Observing Loc. Flagstaff, AZ – Home
Instrument Orion SVP 6LT Reflector (150 mm dia./1200 mm F/L)
Eyepieces/Mag. 10 mm + 2X Barlow (240X)
Conditions Clear, cool (34�F)
Seeing 4-5/10
Sources The Moon Observer’s Guide By Peter Grego
* Based on published data.

Jeremy Perez

Welcome Io

Jupiter and his moons

Jupiter and his moons
Sketch and Details by Janusz Krysiak

Object Name:Jupiter and his moons
Object Type:Planets
Date:21.06.2009(1.50 a.m.)

medium: pencil, white paper
equipment: Newton 300/1500
magnification: 214x

While I had been observing the sky between 1.30am and 2.00am on
21.06.2009. I saw something that amazed me. When I had been looking at
Jupiter I wasn’t able to find Io…, than I understood – it was hidden
behind Jupiter! I had been waiting untill Io showed itself. It was a
magnificent view!!! I just loved it!!! Here is a sketh that tries to
show You what I saw. I hope You like it.

Janusz Krysiak

Hanging with the Coathanger

Cr 399

Cr 399, The Coat Hanger Asterism in Vulpecula
Sketch and Details by Janusz Krysiak

Object Name:Cr 399

medium: pencil, white paper
equipment: Binoculars 60×25

This is a group of stars, looking like a coat hanger. It looks gorgeous in
binoculars. Cr 399 is a prominent group of stars in the constellation of

Full Sun In a Grassy Field

Full Sun In a Grassy Field

Solar h-alpha, AR1023 and 1022: 2009 June 23
Sketch and Details by Erika Rix

2009 June 23, 1500UT – 1625UT
Solar h-alpha and White light, ARs 1023 & 1022
Erika Rix
PCW Memorial Observatory, Zanesville, Ohio USA

H-alpha 1546 UT, DS 60mm Maxscope, LXD75, 21-7mm Zhumell
Temp: 27.7°C
Seeing: Wilson 4.5, Transparency: 5/6
Clear with light cirrus, light breeze N
Alt 52.1 Az 103.5
Sketch created scopeside with black Strathmore Artagain paper, white
Conte’ crayon and pencil, white Prang watercolor pencil, black oil pencil.

White Light Sun

Solar white light, AR1023 and 1022: 2009 June 23, 1621UT
Sketch and Details by Erika Rix

White light 1621 UT, ETX70-AT with tilt plate, 21-7mm Zhumell and 2.5x
SA Barlow
Temp: 30.2°C , Humidity 84%
Seeing: Wilson 2.8, Transparency: 5/6
Clear with light cirrus, winds NE 9mph
Alt 58.5 Az 112.1
Sketch created scopeside with white photocopy paper and #2 pencil.

Solar Comparison

Solar H-alpha and white light comparison: 2009 June 23, 1500UT-1625UT
Sketch and Details by Erika Rix

This morning, I moved the solar rigs outside for better seeing
conditions. After all the rains and then full sun today, the coolness
of the grassy fields would be a significant improvement over the hot
wood and carpet from inside the observatory. It appears my decision was
the correct one because I started the solar session off with h-alpha and
was able to not only increase mags to a 7mm, but used a 2.5x Barlow
toward the end of the
h-alpha session for deeper observing. The seeing became much worse
about an hour later when I began my white light filter observation.

Both active regions were obvious and 1023 almost looked like an “X”
shaped plage with a hint of a spot to the western crook of it. There was
another plage on the other side of that spot with a very prominent
filament reaching to the west, although very small with a more obvious
spot at the eastern start of it. Moving west across the disk, AR1022
was almost a “U” shaped plage resembling a pair of oxen horns with the
way each side of it curved outward.

There were many prominences, all fairly small, but they popped in and
out as I moved the Sun in my FOV for optimum clarity of features.
Speaking of the tilting of the Maxscope’s Etalons, I observed with Alan
Traino at a star party this weekend and had the chance to use a pressure
tuner on their 60mm Lunt h-alpha scope. What a great design! And I was
very impressed with the flat FOV, making it so much easier to pull out
details. Thanks Alan for supplying the scopes for us to try out. Wish
I had had more time to play with the pressure tuning scope as well as
the CaK.

The solar disk was speckled with network details and there were several
filaments, although again, very slender or very small.

The view with the white light filter was a little harder to discern
because of the dramatic change in seeing. Although I got a good focus,
I only had slight moments of seeing to make out a little bit of detail
within AR1023. What first looked like two oblong sunspots in that active
region became two pairs of sunspots. The preceding pair was the larger
with the following pair the smaller. There may have even been a third
little spot in the preceding pair but seeing prevented me from really
honing in on those two sets. There were no faculae that I could make
out, although there was a hint of contrast around both sets of spots as
well a faint line reaching from the preceding to the following pairs.

Catching a Passing Space Station


The International Space Station
Sketch and Details by Janusz Krysiak

Object Name:ISS
Object Type:Satellites
Date:15.05.2009,20.54(8.54 p.m.)

medium: pencil, white paper
equipment: Newton 300/1500
magnification: 68x

This is International Space Station. I made this sketch on 15.05.2009. I
have seen solar panels, it was a wonderful view!

Spiraling into the Whirlpool


M51 (NGC 5194 and 5195), The Whirlpool Galaxy
Sketch and Details by Janusz Krysiak

Object Name:M 51
Object Type:Galaxy

medium: pencil, white paper
equipment: Newton 300/1500
magnification: 68x

Under a dark sky you may see the spiral galaxy structure. I made this
sketch on 18.04.2009 in Pyrnik, Poland.

Janusz Krysiak

Sunrise on the Moon: Gates of Mare Imbrium and Ptolemaeus

Gates of Imbrium and Ptolemaeus

Gates of Mare Imbrium and Ptolemaeus
Sketch and Details by Leonor Ana Hernández

Object name: oriental region of Mare Imbrium and Ptolemaeus crater
Object Type: Lunar Crater and Maria

The last sunday 31th we could point the telescope to the moon in a beautiful place called “Las Inviernas” Guadalajara, Spain. The moon was just on the seventh day and stood high on the beautiful background of blue sky. I looked through the telescope and I was fascinated by the beauty of the image it shows: “it was dawning at the gates of the east of Mare Imbrium”…

Leonor Ana

Raining Suculae


Hyades Open Cluster, Melotte-25
Sketch and Details by Math Heijen

On december 27th 2008 I observed the Hyades with my 12×60 Celestron binoculars, mounted on the SkyWindow. The field of view (FOV) that these binoculars provide is about 5 degrees (300′) and the Hyades are just a little to wide, to fit into FOV. But although I didn’t see the whole cluster in one FOV, the first impression of this cluster was simply stunning. The brilliant deep orange Aldebaran, which actually isn’t a member of the Hyades but a foreground star, dominates the field of view, together with three bright yellow companions. These are three of the four yellow giants of the Hyades: Delta, Gamma, and Theta-1. The fourth is Epsilon (which again didn’t fit in the same FOV). There were many different chains of stars and small asterisms (triangles and other shapes) visible. The northern and southern half’s of the cluster seemed to be more or less divided by a dark empty zone, with almost no stars.

Beside Aldebaran and the three yellow stars, there were two other stars that drew my attention. First of all the brilliant white Theta-2 Tauri, with magnitude 3.3 the brightest star, the Lucida of the Hyades. It makes a beautiful double with the Theta-1, one of the yellow giants. To the south of this nice couple I detected the other prominent star, the reddish M-type variable V1146 (or 84 Tauri). In total I counted about between 75 and 85 stars, but I’m sure with my 300mm Dobson I could double or triple that number easily. According to Archinal and Hynes (Star Clusters, Willmann and Bell) the Hyades contain about 380 stars. This makes it a rich cluster. I could not detect any nebulosity of unresolved stars or of any other kind.

This sketch was made with led-pencil on white paper and later processed in Photoshop. The technique used I learned from Jeremy Perez’s website. If you want to learn more about this object or see a few more sketches of open clusters and double stars, please feel free to visit my website at

Clear Skies!

Math Heijen


Revealing the Veil

The Veil Nebula

The Veil Nebula (NGC 6960)
Sketch and Details by Dan Israël


I made this sketch in a small hamlet in Aubrac, south of France, altitude 1100m, with average transparency and no moon. I used a 80mm refractor at 30x magnification
and an OIII filter. The sketch was made on the spot with graphite pencil on white Canson paper. Some minor improvements were made later in the daylight (shading, shape of stars).

Object Name NGC 6960 (Veil Nebula)
Object Type supernova remnant
Location Aubrac, France
Date August 2007

The Veil Nebula processed

Computer processed Veil Nebula (NGC 6960)
Computer Sketch by Dan Israël

PS: this version with software processing is a little bit more realistic (but less authentic).



Reflections from the High Frontier

ISS and Shuttle

ISS and Progress M-02M
Sketch and Details by Janusz Krysiak

Object Name:ISS&Progress M-02M
Object Type:Satellites
Date:12.05.2009,21.12(9.12 p.m.)

medium: pencil, white paper
equipment: Newton 300/1500
magnification: 68x

These are International Space Station and Progress M-02M about 11
minutes before docking.Progress M-02M was about 150 meters from
International Space Station.It was a wonderful view.

Janusz Krysiak

Immersed in Darkness


Lunar crater Copernicus
Sketch and Details by Krzysztof Jastrzebski (Jarzbi)

I’m sending the charcoal sketch of the crater Copernicus immersed in darkness.

Object Name:
* Object Type (Moon: Copernicus crater)
* Location (Skawina City in Poland)
* Date (03 May 2009, 20:00 UTC)
* Equipment: Synta 8” Dob, Eyepice SP10 mm.

Krzysztof Jastrzebski (Jarzbi)

Stars Like Tiny Pinpoints


M53 (NGC 5024) Globular cluster
Sketch and Details by Kiminori Ikebe, translation by Mr. Eiji Kato

This is a globular cluster southeast of Mel.111 in Coma Berenices. It is fairly large and even at 110x it is finely resolved. This is a beautiful globular cluster with individual stars appearing as pinpoints.
The core shows even brightness and stars are well resolved to the center. North of the center there is a double, but they do not seem to belong to the cluster. The outlying regions in the northern half show scattered faint stars. The southern nebulosity does not show this.

Date of observation: 2000/04/09 02:58 UT
Observing site: Makinoto, Japan
Transparency/seeing/sky darkness: 3/4/4
Instruments: 32cmDB with XL14 at 110x
Width of field: 0.6 °
Kiminori Ikebe

Space Duo

M97 and  M108

M97 “The Owl Nebula” and Galaxy M108
Sketch and Details by Janusz Krysiak


These are the planetary nebula M97 and the galaxy M108. Together are beautifully visible.

Object Name: M 97, M 108
Object Type: Planetary nebula, Galaxy
Location: Pyrnik(Poland)
Date: 14.04.2009

medium: pencil, white paper
equipment: Newton 305/1500
magnification: 68 x

Two Craters in the Extreme Northern Zone

Philolaus and Anaximenes

Lunar craters Philolaus and Anaximenes
Sketch and Details by Giorgio Bonacorsi

Hello Astronomy Sketchers,all o.k.?

After bad weather i decide to observe and drawing the Moon.The vision is partially clear,humidity and clouds cover the sky and made a sketch was very difficult.But yesterday,the sky was clear and i take my little Vixen vmc 110 klevstov .I observe the north zone and decide to drawing two beautyfull craters:Philolaus and Anaximenes.The execution, at the end, was complicated by the passage of light clouds and humidity.I hope like you .

Clear sky and good sketch for all.
Ciao,Giorgio Bonacorsi.

Site:Pergola,Marche Region,Center Italy.
Date:5-6 of May 2009
Moon phase:Crescent (12,1 days)
Instrument:Klevstov Vixen vmc 110
Eyepiece: 15mm + Barlow (138x)
Seeing:Good, clouds and humidity at the end.
Temperature:Fresh,no wind.



M64 (NGC 4826) “The Black Eye or Sleeping Beauty Galaxy”
Sketch and Details by Janusz Krysiak

Object Name:M 64
Object Type:Galaxy

medium: pencil, white paper
equipment: Newton 300/1500
magnification: 68x

I made this sketch in Pyrnik(Poland).Beautiful galaxy, clearly visible
darker place near the center.

A Rupes and a Rima

Rupes Recta

Rupes Recta and Rima Birt
Sketch and Details by Balázs Benei


This is my other sketch, I made it at the beginning of April. Rupes Recta was very easy to observe, it was totally in the field of vision. Rimae Birt was not so easy but I could see it firmly. The seeing was very good at times, I could observ the crater Birt D, which had only 3km (~2miles) diameter. I think this was the end of the definition of my telescope. I made the sketch with graphite pencil.

My equipment: 110/800 (4′) Newtonian reflector, 2x barlow, 10mm eyepiece, 160x magnification.

Yours sincerely
Balázs Benei

Object name: Rupes Recta, Rimae Birt

Object type: Lunar rille, Lunar rimae

Location: Gyöngyös, Hungary

Date: 2009. 04. 04. 17:35 – 18:55 UT

Magnificent Archimedes


Lunar crater Archimedes
Sketch and Details by Krzysztof Jastrzebski (Jarzbi)

This is my new charcoal sketch: large lunar impact crater Archimedes.
Object Name:
* Object Type (Moon: Archmiedes crater)
* Location (Skawina City in Poland)
* Date (02 May 2009, 20:00 UTC)
* Equipment: Synta 8” Dob, Eyepice SP10 mm.

Krzysztof Jastrzebski (Jarzbi)

Galactic Windmill


M101, The Pinwheel Galaxy in Ursa Major
Sketch and Details by Janusz Krysiak

Object Name:M 101
Object Type:Galaxy

medium: pencil, white paper
equipment: Newton 300/1500
magnification: 68x


The building which has absorbed most of my time, many observations have
enabled me to draw some conclusions. First of all, the best results
achieved when the galaxy was very high. My requests generally
poorly-visible, the middle of the oval and a little brighter, you can
see two “weak points of light” near each other in the vicinity of the
center, I recommend a look around the chief field of view, found three
“weak points of light” to show the galaxy frame, after a long
observation draws M 101 is a painting, sketch shows roughly what I saw
and I must say that gave me a lot of satisfaction.

Janusz Krysiak

Great Globular


M13, The Great Globular Cluster in Hercules
Sketch and Details by Robert Gudański, commentary by Rich Handy

This beautiful view of M13, the Great Globular Cluster in the constellation Hercules, was rendered by Polish amateur astronomer Robert Gudański. The cluster, some 25,000 light years from Earth, contains hundreds of thousands of stars. It’s been said that the core of M13 is so dense with stars that a planet near the center (assuming a transparent atmosphere), would behold a sky full of bright suns. In fact the sky would perpetually be several times brighter than the full Moon. Not quite the place to be if you like Deep Sky Objects!

Synta 8″ dob
Stepnica, Poland
Robert Gudański

Ursa Major Triplet

Ursa Major Triplet

M81, M52 and NGC 3077 in Ursa Major
Sketch and Details by Jef De Wit

M81 and M82 are an impressive duo. But a lot of people don’t know that there is a third galaxy in the neighbourhood (NGC 3077, magnitude: 9,8, surface brightness: 13,2). Even in a small telescope (like my 2,75 inch refractor) you can easily see a lot of detail in this trio.

M81 is the biggest and best visible of the three, M82 is a little less bright than M81 and NGC 3077 was only visible with averted vision. Nice are also the differences in form. NGC 3077 is round, M81 is oval (elongated NW-SE) and M82 is oblong (elongated NE-SW). M81 is the only galaxy with a bright nucleus and a big difference in brightness between the core and the outer halo, M 82 has a less difference in brightness and NGC 3077 is uniform, without any detail.

The problem making this sketch was that I couldn’t see the three galaxies at once in the wide angle eyepiece. To see the edge I had to look around the corner. This made it (for me) difficult to position the stars. Normally I limit a sketch to the field of view I can see at once.

Once inside I made some brightness adjustments to the stars and finished the galaxies with the use of a blending stump (at the eyepiece I work with contour lines). After scanning I did some cleaning up with Paint.

I hope you like this “Ursa Major Triplet”.

Clear skies

Jef De Wit

Object Name: M81, M82 and NGC 3077

Object Type: galaxies

Location: Buis-les-Baronnies, France (44°16 north Lat. 5°16 east Long.)

Date and time: 15 April 2009 around 1.15 UT

Equipment: Meade ETX-70 (2,75 inch refractor)

Eyepiece: 7mm Nagler type 6 (FOV 1,6° and magnification 50x)

NELM: 5,7 mag

Medium: graphite pencils HB/2 and 8B, blending stump, printing paper, scanned and inverted, some cleaning up was made with Paint