LtE in CMO #246,247

From   Daniel M TROIANI

@.  . . . . . . . .  Happy Mars Opposition Night!!!


Hi all!


Just got back from a great trip to the Florida Keys. I have 179 e-mails so it might be a time before I can answer all of them. I got to observed both outer space and inner space with little room for sleep. I got to observe Mars almost very night with seeing that I rate as very very good but to Don it was just OK. I wish I had his seeing up here. Thinking about moving someday to the Keys. Got out to the coral reefs a few times to scuba. The most usual fish I saw was a 12 ft. bull shark passing just 15 ft away from me and my friend Deborah. I was lucky because he didn't seen interested in martian meat to eat so he just went off into the deep. Of course I got to see the brighting of Edom. I have here an copy of the IUA  Circular talking about it. Most of you might already have seen it, but if not then enjoy it.

 (12 June 2001 email)


@ . . . . . . . . . . Date: Thu, 28 Jun 2001 16:03:57 -0500

From: Dan Troiani


 Dust Alert! Reports just received from Masatsugu Minami and his colleagues in Japan indicate that a considerable dust storm has erupted in the Hellas/Hesperia region. The cloud, initially of uniform brightness, was detected on CCD images taken by Kumamori and Morita. In particular there appears to be dust over eastern Hellas and another streak at the boundary between Mare Tyrrhenum and Mare Cimmerium. These observations are from early June 26th.


 The storm may have been initially over Mare Tyrrhenum, and according to Ishadoh it has for the most part cleared that region.  The two streaks have a common intersection at Ausonia Australis, with one toward Hellas and the other toward Tyrrhenum/Cimmerium. Akutsu has images which reveal some "meandering" of the cloud features. Using a 60 cm Cassegrain, Kumamori has shot the cloud with a 380-frame composite with a Sony TRV-900 video camera.  In a late report, Morita has detected further development in Hellas and apparent swirling as well.


 Incidentally, they further submit that the SPC is diminutive but visible, and that the NPH is rather prominent.    



Dear Colleagues,

This is a fourth email on the dust at Hesperia-Hellas.

They still enjoy the clear sky and seeing at
Okinawa. I hear
AKUTSU arrived safely there.

I had a telephone call from Yasunobu HIGA at
Naha, Okinawa this
night. According to him, a small, but bright germ of dust has
newly appeared today at the east coast of
Syrtis Mj. It is
interesting to note that the place looks following the area where
the vanished Moeris Lacus was once located, if I have not
misheard. HIGA assures that it is brighter than the spc at
present, but very dim in the blue light. We expect to hear the
aftermath of the germ tomorrow.

My email receiver has however been silent up until now; maybe
since the observation time is not yet over (1:00 o'clock local

We are sorry since we were late in uploading the images of the
dust cloud on 26 and 27 June (by AKUTSU, KUMAMORI and MORITA),
but the CMO Gallery has been updated with these images, and so we
hope you may make an access to

There you will also find the images of the Edom brightening
observed on 7 June at the Florida Keys (by courtesy of Tom
DOBBINS and David MOOR).

Thank you in advance for your interest.

With best wishes,

Masatsugu @

@ . . . . . . . . . A MARTIAN DOUBLE-HEADER:


In addition to the much-anticipated specular reflections from Edom Promontorium as predicted by Dobbins and Sheehan and observed by several from the optimal southern latitude of the Florida Keys, oriental observers have flashed their observations of a dust storm of unprecedented magnitude for the season in the Hellas/Mare Tyrrhenum region.


 Based on observations made in the 1950's plus the repetition of the peculiar alignment positions in the current apparition, Dobbins and Sheehan, upon checking close-ups of Mars Global Surveyor imagery of the appropriate region and orientation, concluded that the mysterious Edom flashing might be detected again. Armed only with modest telescopic equipment, the team led by Tom to south Florida managed to handily image the flashes. They appear to be the result of frost reflections at crater floors, apparently most conspicuously from one known as Schiaparelli, that orient themselves toward earth in only very unusual circumstances. Better yet, Dr. Gaskell and others now believe there may be a repeat of this allignment again soon, as Mars has now swung through its southernmost position and is working its way northward again (see the Mars Section link on the ALPO website for a table of visibility).


As the mechanics of Martian rotation shift the visibility zone, occidentalsb are hopeful that the dust their Asian colleagues have been imaging will still be available to check out for themselves.  The undersigned, with a Wratten #23A filter and a 10" f/8 Newtonian were able to just detect a preceding limb brightening early July 3 UT.  It appears that the storm has at least semi-hemispheric coverage centered about Martian longitude 275 degrees.  As many observers as possible are requested to look for this outbreak as the appropriate longitudes become available to them. The dust may have specifically originated either in eastern Hellas or Ausonia Australis, and a dual origin may also be the case.  It could become planetary encircling even if not global, so it would be wise to check for possible further spreading.  From the imagery already received, there is promise that almost everyone with the proper equipment will witness this event.

(4 July 2001 email)



                     ALPO Mars Section


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