SkyViewCafe Tip #1 - Catching the GRS

January 2nd, 2013 | by sbieger |

One of my favorite tools on the internet is Sky View Cafe (SVC). Its a Java applet that runs in a browser session and its free to use online. It’s so useful that I hope to publish the occasional tip for using it. So here is the first tip, using SVC to plan your GRS viewing. I’ll leave it to you to follow the link above and poke around with it for a while. There is online help available via the “More” button.

Notice that there are several “tabs” visible. I’ve used the tab called “Moon/GRS” a number of times in the last few months to find the GRS. Since the planet us higher in the sky now and we are occasionally getting some better, if not decent, seeing conditions, I’ve been trying to catch the GRS whenever it’s around the front of the planet.

On this occasion, Halloween 2010, I had help by following the shadow of Io, which was right next to the GRS. I was able to see that distinct high contrast dot and I knew the GRS was right next to it. My goal that evening was to catch the GRS using different planetary filters. That’s another story all together, but I was able to find the GRS easily with the SVC printout on hand.

Here is a partial clip of what the SVC display looked like for the event. Click on the image to get a larger view.

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