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Matt Will Saturn Observations


Date: September 3, 1995
Time: 5:15 to 5:40 UT
CMs: System I; 305.4-320.1
System II; 140.6-154.7
B: 0.75 B': 1.1
Instrument: 6 inch f/8 Newtonian Reflector
Magnification: 230x
Seeing: 7
Transparency: 5

The belts and zones hadn't change much in a week from the last observation I had made (on 8-27-95) with one important exception. The NPR-NTZ area was noticeably darker than the SEB. Below are the intensity estimates made for both the planetary and ring features.

Feature		Integrated Light  Red W25 filter  Blue W80A filter

Far SPR			2.0		2.0		2.0
SPR-STZ			6.0		6.0		6.0
SEB			4.5		4.5		4.5
EZs			7.0		7.0		7.0
EZn			7.0		7.0		7.0
NEB			3.5		3.5		3.5
NPR-NTZ			4.0		4.0		4.0
Ring Against Globe*	5.5		----		----
Shadow of Rings 
on Globe		1.0		1.0		1.0
Rings, east side	6.0		6.0		6.0
Rings, west side	6.0		5.5		5.5

* See description in paragraph below.

The rings appeared to be of equal brightness in integrated light and there was no obvious tinting toward the color red with either side of the rings. Using both the red W25 and blue W80A, the western side of the rings appeared dimmer than the eastern side. After the formal observation was completed I continued viewing Saturn. At 6:04 UT I encountered some very good seeing. At 330x, the rings could be resolved as a solid continuous unit against the background of the planet, with the shadow of the rings on the globe seen just below the rings. I could barely discern some detail in the SEB and NEB, however, I could not clearly define these features on the edge of visibility.

Matt Will

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