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M92

In order to maximize my imaging time during clear skies, I've recently started to capture bright star clusters when the moon is too bright for any other deep space object. My latest LRGB attempt is below, the globular cluster M92. Apart from the inevitable light pollution gradients, removed during post processing, the effects of the moon light pollution appear to be minimal.  The image was taken with my Esprit 150 and represents about 3.6 hours integration time.

To maximise star colour I gave the Lum data three different DDP stretches within CCDstack (high, medium and very low) and then blended the scaled images within PS. This approach tries to get the Lum data below 200 (when measured in 8 bits) to ensure that star colour can be obtained. 

On the acquisition front: I have an automated set up that is controlled by ACP Expert. So, if I believe that an object can be imaged during any phase of the moon, then I set this objects priority as very low. This means that image capture will only be attempted if it is not possible to capture any LRGB or narrowband data on any other objects. Using this approach my imaging time is automatically maximized since ACP monitors the moon's phase and periodically works out if LRGB or narrowband data can be collected based on the angular distance of the object from the moon and type of data to be collected.


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Deep Sky III

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