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Northeast USA Light pollution
Map of the World and it's light Pollution

Bortel Scale of light pollution


Extra Dark Site
Weekend Excursion 5 hr drive
Click for Errol, New Hampshire Forecast
Weekend Getaway

Class 2: Typical truly dark site - Gray
Airglow may be weakly apparent along the horizon. M33 is rather easily seen with direct vision. The summer Milky Way is highly structured to the unaided eye, and its brightest parts look like veined marble when viewed with ordinary binoculars. The zodiacal light is still bright enough to cast weak shadows just before dawn and after dusk, and its color can be seen as distinctly yellowish when compared with the blue-white of the Milky Way. Any clouds in the sky are visible only as dark holes or voids in the starry background. You can see your telescope and surroundings only vaguely, except where they project against the sky. Many of the Messier globular clusters are distinct naked-eye objects. The limiting naked-eye magnitude is as faint as 7.1 to 7.5, while a 32-cm telescope reaches to magnitude 16 or 17.


Dark Sites
2 hours drive

Youngs Farm Observatory NHAS

 Click for Hillsboro, New Hampshire Forecast

Class 4: Rural/suburban transition
Fairly obvious light-pollution domes are apparent over population centers in several directions. The zodiacal light is clearly evident but doesn't even extend halfway to the zenith at the beginning or end of twilight. The Milky Way well above the horizon is still impressive but lacks all but the most obvious structure. M33 is a difficult averted-vision object and is detectable only when at an altitude higher than 50 degrees. Clouds in the direction of light-pollution sources are illuminated but only slightly so, and are still dark overhead. You can make out your telescope rather clearly at a distance. The maximum naked-eye limiting magnitude is 6.1 to 6.5, and a 32-cm reflector used with moderate magnification will reveal stars of magnitude 15.5. Modest to serious impact to deep sky observing and imaging.

Click for Hillsboro, New Hampshire Forecast
Winslow State Park
2,937- foot Mt. Kearsarge
Winslow and Rollins State Parks

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ATMoB Clubhouse and
Edward G Knight Observatory
Westford MA

Class 6: Bright suburban sky
No trace of the zodiacal light can be seen, even on the best nights. Any indications of the Milky Way are apparent only toward the zenith. The sky within 35 degrees of the horizon glows grayish white. Clouds anywhere in the sky appear fairly bright. You have no trouble seeing eyepieces and telescope accessories on an observing table. M33 is impossible to see without binoculars, and M31 is only modestly apparent to the unaided eye. The naked-eye limit is about 5.5, and a 32-cm telescope used at moderate powers will show stars at magnitude 14.0 to 14.5.

Astronight Decksatory

Click for North Billerica, Massachusetts Forecast

Click for North Billerica, Massachusetts Forecast
71.17.53w  42.36.01n
North Billerica MA

Class 7: Suburban/urban transition
The entire sky background has a vague, grayish white hue. Strong light sources are evident in all directions. The Milky Way is totally invisible or nearly so. M44 or M31 may be glimpsed with the unaided eye but are very indistinct. Clouds are brilliantly lit. Even in moderate-size telescopes, the brightest Messier objects are pale ghosts of their true selves. The naked-eye limiting magnitude is 5.0 if you really try, and a 32-cm reflector will barely reach 14th magnitude. Less than 100 stars visible over 30 degrees elevation.
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Car Lights and Astrophotography Do Not Mix

I unfortunatly live on a main route in a semi urban mag5.5 location, With constant traffic lights approaching head on while I observe and image.

New Astro Dome for the Deck....

Thanks Astromarter Doug!

Deck receives new indoor outdoor carpet,
I am planning on pouring a cement pad and putting a peir next spring.

Dome is moved next to the house and receives a fresh coat of paint inside and out

dome placed on the deck and scopes setup

New mount for the dome
It just barely fits but there is more room to move
since the tripod wedge and fork mounted nexstar took more internal space
I have setup a small desk and chair so that I can sit
inside to prep a image run or just watch the Video camera

More pictures on the way



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