April 1, 2006 Pleiades Occultation
Over the years, I have wanted to observe an occultation of the Pleiades. I recall the first time I wanted to observe one was in the early 1970s. Unfortunately, weather did not cooperate that evening and the sky was completely blanketed by clouds. As the years passed, opportunity after opportunity slipped by as the weather or my military career interfered. Finally, in 2006 there was a chance to capture an occultation with the moon being a crescent. As luck would have it, the sky did not cooperate completely. A front had just passed through and skies were clear at sunset. However, just as it got dark enough to take some photographs, the sky clouded up and stayed that way for two hours. Just as the occultation was ending, the sky suddenly cleared for about thirty minutes and I obtained a few more images. It was better than a complete cloud out but it was an expected result.
A photograph just as it got dark. Shortly after this, clouds obscurred most of the occultation.Orion 120mm F5 refractor using a 3 second exposure with a Nikon D70 set at ISO 800
The sky cleared in time to show the moon had passed through most of the Pleiades. Orion 120mm F5 refractor using a 3 second exposure with a Nikon D70 set at ISO 800
A mosaic of the moon with some of the fainter stars of the Pleiades. 10" Meade SCT @ F6.3 using a 3 second exposure with a Nikon D70 set at ISO 800
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