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Observations made in the constellation Leo:

Sun (Sun, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 62-mm other   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Transparency: fair   Seeing: good
Time: Thu Aug 17 15:00:00 2017 UT   Obs. no.: 2021

This morning I observed the sun with my Sun Spotter Solar Telescope. A new sunspot group, AR2671 has appeared on the sun's face. It's possible that this grouping will produce an X class flare which may cause auroras down the road. I also think this spot will still be on the sun's face on 8/21 when the solar eclipse occurs. That would be a nice double header.

Sun (Sun, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 62-mm other   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Transparency: fair   Seeing: good
Time: Wed Aug 9 16:00:00 2017 UT   Obs. no.: 2020

Around noon today my brother Anthony & I observed the sun with my Sunspotter Solar Scope. One spot, AR2670, continues to move across the sun's face. It doesn't look like it will cause any auroras though.

Sun (Sun, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 62-mm other   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Transparency: fair   Seeing: good
Time: Thu Aug 3 05:00:00 2017 UT   Obs. no.: 2019

This afternoon, I observed the sun with my Sun Spotter Solar Telescope. A new sunspot just rotated onto the sun's face. This was the same spot that brought a great aurora about 2-3 weeks ago. It doesn't look like it is very powerful this time around though.

Sun (Sun, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 62-mm other   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Transparency: fair   Seeing: fair
Time: Sun Jul 23 16:30:00 2017 UT   Obs. no.: 2016

This afternoon, I observed the sun with my Sun Spotter Solar Telescope. After last's weeks action, the sun this week is completely blank. No spots at all.

Jupiter (Planet, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Mark D. Schneider (e-mail: markd_s@yahoo.com)
Instrument: naked eye   Location: Garden Grove, California, United States of America
Light pollution: light   Transparency: fair   Seeing: fair
Time: Wed Feb 24 03:50:30 2016 UT   Obs. no.: 1966

the Moon was passing low in the East...a nice sight.

Venus (Planet, est. mag -4.7, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 50-mm binoculars   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: fair
Time: Tue Jun 30 01:15:00 2015 UT   Obs. no.: 1951

This evening, my brother Anthony, my friend Joe & I observed the close conjunction Of the Planets Venus & Jupiter. Jupiter was less than .4 of a degree above & left of Venus. In binoculars, Venus was a waning crescent while a couple of Jupiter's moons were in View. Tomorrow night, These two planets will be just .3 of a degree apart.

Venus (Planet, est. mag -4.3, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 127-mm other   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: fair
Time: Fri Oct 12 08:55:00 2012 UT   Obs. no.: 1885

This morning I arose early to observe the conjuction of Venus & the crescent moon. The earthshine on the moon was spectacular. It's been a long time since I've seen earthshine like that. I also aimed my 127mm MAK with 12mm Televue Eyepiece on Venus. Venus is now a waxing gibbous. I did manage to see some small dark patches on Venus' dazzling cloud deck. When I finished, I went right back to bed!

Mars (Planet, est. mag -2.2, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 127-mm other   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: fair
Time: Mon Feb 27 02:30:00 2012 UT   Obs. no.: 1880

This evening, I observed Mars with 127mm MAK & 12mm televue eyepiece. Mars' north polar icecap has shrunk as Mars' northern hemishere transitions to spring. I was able to see some albedo features which I could not identify. Earlier in the evening I observed the close encounter between Jupiter & the moon with Venus below them. It was a beautiful sight. Mercury also was in the western sky far below Venus but still easy to see. In my 10X50 binoculars Venus looked less than half lit as it heads towards its crscent phase.

Mars (Planet, est. mag -1, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 127-mm other   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: fair
Time: Wed Feb 1 04:00:00 2012 UT   Obs. no.: 1879

Last night, my brother Anthony & I observed Mars with my 127mm MAK & 12mm Televue eyepiece. The north polar ice cap is very large & obvious. It will start melting very soon as Mars' northern hemishere enters spring. The only land feature I identified was Syrtis Major. I also thought I saw a polar hood over Mars' south pole.

Saturn (Planet, est. mag 0.5, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 127-mm other   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: fair
Time: Fri Mar 25 03:45:00 2011 UT   Obs. no.: 1867

This evening I observed Saturn with my 127mm MAK. I was able to observe one belt on the planet. The rings of Saturn are opening up now but I wasn't able to see the Cassini Division. Finally, I was also able to see Rhea which was close to Saturn.

Venus (Planet, est. mag -4, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 50-mm binoculars   Location: Stratford, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: fair
Time: Mon Jul 12 01:30:00 2010 UT   Obs. no.: 1852

Last evening, my friends Steve, Terry and Paul observed the close conjunction of Venus and Regulus in the western sky with my 10X50 binoculars. In binos the cream color of Venus contrasted nicely the bluish tinge of regulus. We also had the pleasure of watching the ISS cross the sky almost directly over our heads. That's what I call a nice relaxing evening.

Mars (Planet, est. mag -1.2, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 127-mm other   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: fair
Time: Thu Jan 28 02:15:00 2010 UT   Obs. no.: 1846

Last evening I observed Mars with my 127mm MAK and with my 12mm Televue Eyepiece. Mars' north polar icecap has started to recede. A couple of weeks ago I noticed some shrinkage of the NPC but now it's very obvious. I can now see albedo features quite easily now that mars is at opposition. Also there was a little limb haze on Mars.

Mars (Planet, est. mag -1.5, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 127-mm other   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: poor
Time: Fri Dec 18 04:00:00 2009 UT   Obs. no.: 1841

Last evening my brother Anthony and I observed Mars with my 127MM MAK and 12mm Televue eyepiece. We were able to see the North Polar Ice Cap without any difficulty. The ice cap should start melting soon but so far it's very obvious. I've also been observing sunspot complex 1035 with my solar scope. A CME was ejected towards earth and we have a chance to see an Aurora this evening. Here's hoping.

Comet (Comet, est. mag 5, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 127-mm other   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: fair
Time: Wed Feb 25 03:00:00 2009 UT   Obs. no.: 1816

This evening my brother Anthony and I observed Comet Lulin with my 127mm MAK and my 10X50 binoculars. In binos the comet looked large and was an oval shaped fuzzball. However, in my telescope the comet had a stellar point with two short tails going away the the comet diaganally. Everyone is saying the the comet looks green but to my brother and I, it looked grey. We also observed Saturn. Saturn's rings are almost edge on now. Even though they were nearly edge on, we could still see them easily. Also we saw three moons of Saturn.

Saturn (Planet, est. mag .5, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 127-mm other   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: fair
Time: Mon Oct 20 10:30:00 2008 UT   Obs. no.: 1803

Early this morning I observed Saturn with my 127mm MAK. Saturn's rings are becoming more edge on as we near late December when they will be almost completely edge on. I am able to see Saturn's northern hemishere with no truoble now. I couldn't see any markings on Saturn this time but that will change as Saturn heads towards opposition. I also observed Saturn's satellite Rhea quite easily.

Mars (Planet, est. mag 1.5, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 50-mm binoculars   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: good
Time: Fri Jul 11 01:15:00 2008 UT   Obs. no.: 1793

This evening Steve Borer and I observed the close encounter between Saturn and Mars using my 10X50 binoculars and our naked eye. Mars and Saturn came within three quarters of a degree to each other. In binoculars Saturn's yellow color contrasted very nicely to the orange color of Mars. Saturn also was the brighter of the two planets. Both planets will remain fairly close to each other for the next few days.

Saturn (Planet, est. mag 0.7, est. to be in Leo, Est. RaDec 10h22m +12, 21')
Observer: Scott Malthouse (e-mail: semicolon_irrigation@hotmail.co.uk)
Instrument: binoculars   Location: Leeds, West Yorkshire, England
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: good   Seeing: good
Time: Thu Jun 5 11:39:00 2008 UT   Obs. no.: 1788

Saturn is in Leo right now and can be seen after dark above Regulus, at magnitute 0.7; making it a good sight even if there's excessive light pollution.

Saturn (Planet, est. mag .3, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 10-inch Dobsonian reflector   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: fair
Time: Fri Apr 18 01:00:00 2008 UT   Obs. no.: 1778

This evening my friends Mike Dzubaty, his son Mike, Steve Borer, Rob Masaw and I held an informal star party at the West Haven beach for about thirty people. As usual the big favorite was Saturn. We were all able to see the shadow casted on Saturn's rings. Titan also was visible. When we turned the scope on Mars we could easily see its gibbous phase. What surprised me was my ability to still see albedo features on Mars although I couldn't identify them. When we turned our scopes onto the moon we were able to see Mare Marginis and Mare Smythii which were turned favorably towards us. Usually they are on the back side of the moon. Lastly we saw a -3 magnitude Iridium flare cross the eastern sky. The best part was the temperature was nice and mild.

Meteor (Meteor, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Mark D. Schneider (e-mail: markd_s@yahoo.com)
Instrument: naked eye   Location: Garden Grove, California, United States of America
Light pollution: light   Transparency: good   Seeing: good
Time: Wed Apr 16 05:08:00 2008 UT   Obs. no.: 1777

A semi-bright flash was seen passing over from North to South east of the Gibbous Moon tonight...they aren't too visible from here.

Satellite (Satellite, est. mag -1, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Mark D. Schneider (e-mail: markd_s@yahoo.com)
Instrument: naked eye   Location: Garden Grove, California, United States of America
Light pollution: light   Transparency: good   Seeing: good
Time: Mon Apr 14 02:46:30 2008 UT   Obs. no.: 1774

Iridium 90 made a rather faint pass over us tonight SE of the Gibbous Moon.

Satellite (Satellite, est. mag -3, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Mark D. Schneider (e-mail: markd_s@yahoo.com)
Instrument: naked eye   Location: Garden Grove, California, United States of America
Light pollution: light   Transparency: good   Seeing: good
Time: Sun Apr 13 02:52:30 2008 UT   Obs. no.: 1773

Inasmuch as the CalSky website predicted a SHORT Flare from Iridium 50 tonight over a nearby location, I can say that it was longer and not as bright; nevertheless, the event certainly did restore my "faith" in this activity I have adopted. Previous to this, I have noticed that the Heaven's Above website has been more accurate these past few months to the point that I have begun making sure that they "match up" on BOTH of them.

Saturn (Planet, est. mag -.5, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 127-mm other   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: fair
Time: Mon Feb 25 00:45:00 2008 UT   Obs. no.: 1764

This evening I observed Saturn with my 127mm MAK. Since Saturn is at opposition I tried to view the Seeliger effect which is a brightening of Saturn's rings at opposition. The Seeeliger effect wasn't nearly as bright as last year. I think the reason is the rings are more edge on this year which reduces the reflected sunlight on the rings. I also noticed the south polar hood wasn't nearly as dark as it was last year. Last year the polar hood was almost black and very large in size. This year I could hardly see it at all. Finally the only moon I saw was Titan.

Moon (Moon, est. mag -5, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 50-mm binoculars   Location: Milford, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: fair
Time: Thu Feb 21 03:01:00 2008 UT   Obs. no.: 1763

This evening my friends Mike Dzubaty, Steve Borer, Joe Cseh and Bob Masud observed the total lunar eclipse. At first the sky was partly to mostly cloudy as the eclipse entered its partial phase. The skies continued to clear as it moved toward totality. About 15 minutes before totality the right and upper parts of the moon showed a blue color. This was probably caused by ozone in the atmosphere. During totality the moon had a deep orange red glow with the central regions of the moon being dark. Using the Danjon scale I rated the eclipse as L= 2. Another thing we noticed was the penumbra was rather easy to spot. The penumbra began in the lower left hand part of the eclipse all of us saw it quite easily. Finally very cold temperatures forced us indoors and now we must wait until December 2010 for the next total lunar eclipse.

Saturn (Planet, est. mag .21, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 127-mm other   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: fair
Time: Tue Jan 29 04:15:00 2008 UT   Obs. no.: 1757

This evening I observed Saturn with my 127mm MAK. With Saturn's rings less than two years away from being edge on I am now able to see both hemispheres of Saturn. However, I could not see any albedo markings on Saturn's northern hemisphere. In the southern hemisphere I was able to view the south equitorial belt and the south polar hood which is only slightly darkened. I also saw Saturn's satellites Rhea which was close to the planet and Titan which was well away from Saturn.

Venus (Planet, est. mag -4.5, est. to be in Leo)
Observer: Michael Amato (e-mail: abigmick@aol.com)
Instrument: 50-mm binoculars   Location: West Haven, Connecticut, United States
Light pollution: moderate   Transparency: fair   Seeing: good
Time: Thu Jul 26 00:20:00 2007 UT   Obs. no.: 1684

I just finished observing Venus with my binoculars in order to see its crescent. Even in binoculars Venus' crescent is easy to see. I simply braced my binos on my car and viewed. As Venus' crescent shrinks the apparant size of the planet grows. In the next week or so you can view Venus' crescent with binoculars.

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