Go Observing Help

Choosing Objects

Choosing Objects to Observe

One of the most important parts of Go Observing is choosing the right objects to observe. As well as getting the right kind of object, you also need to know when it can be observed.

This page will help you to make the right decision.

The main part of the page will show a number of coloured "bars" and labels, like the ones below.

Screen Shot

Time Bars

Time Bar

The Time Bars show the dates and times that you are exploring. Here they go from September to December 2003.

Key to the Visibility Bars

Key to the Visibility Bars

As you will see below, each object has a colour bar that tells you when it is easy to observe and when it is not. This bar shows you which colours to look for. Red is very good, Green is OK and Blue is not good at all.

The Objects and Visibility Bars

Visibility Bars

This shows the list of objects that you might want to observe - in this example, four of the bright planets. From the visibility bars you can see that:

  • Jupiter and Uranus start well, get worse and then get better again.
  • Saturn is good towards the middle, but poor the rest of the time.
  • Mercury cannot be observed at all on these dates.

Change Observing Time

If you want to change the Observing Time, click here. This may be a good idea if there is nothing you want to observe in the list, of if you want to choose a shorter or longer time to look at.