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Neptune Image 2017/10/31(UT)


Here are more images of Neptune, from 31st October 2017. 
This night exhibited very steady atmospheric conditions (note Delta. Aquarii collimation image inset in image) - 
but with a near Full Moon it made finding Neptune very difficult, delaying the start of imaging for an hour. :(
This was more because we could not "see" Lambda Aquarii (our usual collimating star) 
because of the Moon's glar so we settled on D.Aqu. 
which was nearby & quite suitable...from D. Aqu. to L.Aqu. & then Neptune was quite easy in comparison. :) 
Marc Delcroix' ephemeris continues to work very well, the spot measurements seem to accord very well with his prediction for that night, 
taking into account the time & the calculated drift rate - see measurement image attached.
We captured the bright spot after it had transitted the C.M. due to the abovementioned delay...
but all the images captured were of a very high quality: there is remarkable homogeneity from image to image, 
specifically in the darker albedo markings that appear as a fine "tracery" in each image & 
very closely-matched from first to last image below - the sub-equatorial dark band is very clearly defined as is the major bright EQ. 
feature (which appears to be getting brighter over time) as ell as its' following more obscure bright patch at similar latitiudes.
Other brighter patches which may only be delineations of the disk from the darker "tracery" can be seen...
these also matching across the different images.
An r-g-b sequence was also captured with the red-channel supplying the data for the bright storm spot also: 
this is the 3rd or 4th time this current apparition that we have managed to capture r-g-b sequences where storm features are on display - 
a rare event at best but certainly the most times in any apparition since we commenced imaging Neptune. :)
An animation (reversing) is also included.

[Milika-Nicholas:Adelaide,South Australia]

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