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(IAAC) Obj: Regulus (alpha Leo) - Inst: 8" f/10 SCT on fork



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Observer: Lew Gramer
Your skills: Intermediate (some years)
Date/time of observation: 1998-03-10/11 01:45 UT
Location of site: Medford, MA, USA (Lat 42oN, Elev 5m)
Site classification: Suburban
Sky darkness: 5.1 <Limiting magnitude>
Seeing: 5 <1-10 Seeing Scale (10 best)>
Moon presence: None - moon not in sky
Instrument: 8" f/10 SCT on fork
Magnification: 170x, 340x
Filter(s): None
Object(s): Regulus (alpha Leo)
Category: Multiple star.
Class: B8, G
Constellation: Leo
Data: mag 1.4, 7.7, 13.2  size 177" PA 307o (catalog)
Position: RA 10:08  DEC +11:58
Description:
The Regulus multiple system is very pretty at any telescopic magnification.
Although it appears as a single star with no companions in the finder, it is
easily split at the lowest powers available in the SCT. The nearest of the
"companion" stars is about mag. 8, separated by just under 3' (quite a good
estimate for a beginner like me), at what appeared to me to be PA 250o (not
quite as good). At higher power (340x), a "C" companion, mag 11 or 12, was
apparent to direct vision, separated from comes "B" by about 30" and from
primary Regulus by perhaps 4' at PA 200o (not bad). Finally, a possible mag.
10-11 "D" companion was noted at over 5' separation, PA 270o. Interestingly,
all stars in the group were colorless except Regulus itself - which appeared
distinctly more yellowish the higher the power! A strange contrast effect!
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