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Picard on Mare Crisium

In reviewing the images taken during the setup and testing of the Bent Nail Observatory, I came across a shot of our beloved moon from August 31st. This is a single frame from the Medium Field Rig which is a Teleskop Service Photoline 130. In contrast to the other images I usually show which take hours and hours of exposure, this is a single frame of only 1/100th of a second through a green filter using the ASI1600MM Pro camera.

Because the moon was quite full the best details are in the northeastern area that was not fully illuminated and therefore had shadows that give a three dimensional appearance. The large circular area shown below is the 4 billion year old lake of cooled lava, Mare Crisium, which is large enough to fit Newfoundland inside.

And inside it is the crater Picard which is 23km in diameter and 2.4km deep. It is named for the 17th century French astronomer Jean Picard. Star Trek's captain Jean-Luc Picard was named after him.

The Skyward 150 telescopes that are loaned out from the Blue Door Astro Library can show similar detail to this on a night with good seeing and when the telescope is fully cooled and carefully focussed.


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