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Posts posted by nytecam

  1. Hi Thomo - I'm in Zone 4 (non-Londoners can Google it!) so your LP will be worse than mine but workable. Aperture in a modest package like 5"- 8" SCT or Mak reduced to f/4 will work fine with the 16-bit Lodestar. 16-bit means brief exposures can be stretched much better than sub 16-bit cameras and in a single clean hit unlike video that multiple stacks frames at mains rate.

    To go deeper you can stack a series of say 10s exps just short of saturation (=whiteout) then remove bright background sky to near black as if LP is effectively non-existant ! 

    Here's 20s on the Dumbbell from two nights ago !

    Good luck

    and Happy New Year Everyone


  2. HeavensAbove showed Mercury low in SW in bright twilight this evening but before I could get the scope on it it set behind my neighbour's rooftop.  Anyway as the obsy was open I tried for my fovourite summer DSOs in the Ring and Dumbbell for the last time this year in the bright western sky - here's the result with globular M56 in Lyra too in identical brief exposures.  Inset shows the two central stars in the Ring.

    I unchecked the camera s/w colour correction/ LP filter for the images to record the residue blue sky background.  After some low cloud pass another and longer shot of the Dumbell in now an essentially dark sky 30min later.   ;-) 






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  3. Not seen the sun much of late but OK today with small proms on east and west limbs - here the latter from a few minutes ago snapped from front porch. Nice filaments on disk ;-)



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  4. Here's a montage of my DIY obsy built two decades ago in my London garden where LP is severe but the dome gives complete protection for me and my Meade 12" SCT.  No EPs used nowadays as my cameras punch through the light-dome with impunity as sample Ring and Bowtie nebulae show.  

    The background 10ft DIY dome from the 1970s removed last year and previously contained a 17.3" Newt + smaller scopes on massive forks. 

    My obsy build at http://home.freeuk.com/m.gavin/mydome.htm  and DSO galleries stuff on my Nytecam Channel on Youtube ;-) 

    http://home.freeuk.com/m.gavin/cnlinks.html = homepage



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  5. Thanks guys for the comments and likes ;-)

    Very nice...I wonder what the skies are like around Windsor now!  

    A lot better than mine 9miles from London's Picadilly Circus  :-0

    Here's a slightly longer exposure that shows the anse better but swamps the PN core for a near perfect "Saturn" view ;-)



  6. Happy Boxing Day everyone ;-)

    Bit late in the year to target the Saturn Nebula NGC 7009 in Aquarius but here's my fair shot from Christmas Eve low in the SW over neighbour's rooftops after bagging Neptune and Triton nearby !   The "Saturn"  does look like its real planetary namesake with two faint "anse" or edge-on rings.

    N7009 was discovered by William Herschel in 1782 from his house in Datchet near Windsor Castle the year after his discovery of Uranus.  We passed near Datchet on Wednesday and I must return to see if I can get a picture of his house !

    Happy New Year Everyone..



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  7. Thanks Rob for the  Sky Safari projection mode - it's still amazing s/w !

    Here's Uranus [5s exp] + Neptune [8s exp] and their sats from last night through haze/cirrus - wanted to catch Triton again within 24hrs to see its motion ;-)

    Note how Neptune [it's passed opposition] is 'moving' east again to left caused by earth's much faster inner orbit motion whilst Uranus is moving west [retrograde motion] against the star backgrounds !  This is apparent over just a few hours as earth 'thunders' along its orbital track whilst we down here feel nothing of this motion !




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  8. Robert - excellent presentation of the Uranian sat orbits ;-)  As the orbits seem essentially circular, I'm surprised they show, as apparently viewed from earth,  'perpective' as if close to the planet but I may be wrong !

    Here's Uranus' sats from last night [and placed correctly in Pisces and not Aquarius!] and Neptune and Trition in Aquarius. 

    Interestingly almost all bodies in the solar system axially spin and orbit, whether planet or satellite, in the same anticlockwise direction but Triton uniquely bucks the trend for a large body !




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  9. Robert - my Cartes du Ciel doesn't plot the orbits but other s/w may. As Uranus' poles are inclined >90degs the sat motion may be clockwise ! I could check this by running CdC for advancing hours to see their movement !


  10. Very nice capture, I wonder if Oberion has a slightly inclined orbit as it does not seem to be in line with the other two?

    Robert - I don't read it that way. The orbits of the sats are highly inclined ellipses from our viewpoint and all 3 east (lelt) side of the ellipse on this occasion moving in anticlockwise direction :-)


  11. My routine 5s exposure to record the outer moons of Uranus in Aquarius via my Lodestar camera on my Classic Meade 30cm SCT - fainter Miranda and Ariel lost in glare of planet.  Moon ID via Cartes du Ciel - data on image.



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  12. Nytecam,
    I use flats when imaging but do miss the ability to apply them during observing as Starlight Live SW does not support flats yet. Are you applying these while at the scope or after?

    Hiten - the original SX LS s/w permits auto darks/ flats in mono but not auto flats in colour but I'm sure SX would incorporate the later if requested and likewise with Paul's LodestarLive etc.    

    Lately I just view the raw downloads in mono [and save] via SX s/w using View/ Auto contrast stretch [lowest 4-bits I think] that gives a bright if noisy display as unprocessed. Next day I get to review them again and relive the capture experience !  Then a few keystrokes to process, including darks/flats, and post here ! 

    Not many folk seem bothered with flats but my skies [14M neighbours in the London Metro area] are major light polluted with [apart from the zenith] a background gradiate across every captured frame !  Hence more care needed than most in this game ;-0

    Here's a sample flat [in grey] and the colour of my sodium lit cloudbase the flat came from !  This colour pervades the skies when cloudless too due to particulates and I check the s/w "LP filter" for DSO imaging and it seamlessly removes the colour cast to a neutral grey.



  13. laudropb - this is the Video/EAA forum where one electronically views and records many DSOs in a session in brief exposures [essentially a substitute for eyeballing] so grain/noise can be part of the territory and where you're never likely to see smug "is 10hrs exp long enough"  ;-) 

    Happy viewing !


  14. M1 is one of my favourite targets but tricky dodging the low scudding cloud on Dec 17 - two version but neither my best eg....

    1] essentially raw and

    2] sharpening highlights noise and looses star colour but shows the red tendrils of 'explosion'

    Hope it's of interest ;-)




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  15. Thanks Hiten, Don and Dave for your comments ;-)

    Hiten - I've vignetting in the corners of my shots on the LS @ f3.3 but it's eliminated with a single 'flat' [shot of passing cloudbase + gaussian blur to destroy colour info] for a smooth fov.

    Don - I'm still learning with the LS and as I'm pleased with results won't be changing any time soon ;-)



  16. Currently wellplaced to the south in Cetus is one of the first variable stars to be discovered in antiquity eg Mira = omicron Ceti "long period VS".  It's currently about minimum light [AAVSO] of m9.2 but due to it near IR radiation as a red giant on my unfiltered 20s image it appears grossly brighter by many mags and tinted bluish.   Visually it appears as bright as the marked star to the left. 

    A degree or so west in Quasar Q0214-033 @ m16.8 hiding close to a mag 13.5 star @ distance of 3.7BLY - see inset.  The captured light began its journey when primative life began on Earth !  Two faint gx to the SW,




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  17. Thanks guys for the comments and likes !

    North of the above "Eskimo" and a degree or so SW of Castor is another but faint [m13.0 + m14.8 central star] OIII emitting planetary NGC 2371 that I've dubbed the "Castor Propeller" for its appearnce and proximity to Castor - and why not!   In deep exposures this PN has multiple faint loops extending outwards including two brightish opposing lobes - one of which is just captured in 40s exposure.  Data on image ;-)



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  18. Been the cloudiest early winter for years [1st clearish night last night in 10 days] and I'm suffering photon starvation!   Temps in high 60sF - warmest December for 100yrs - all down to global warming.

    Did a dozen Messiers/NGCs  - here's the bright Eskimo in 5 seconds via Lodestar-C under me dome - data on image ;-)



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  19. The track of totality is only a few miles across and it would be extremely lucky if it passed through your backyard so some travel is inevitable . The two totals I've seen in India and France were dark but much like twilight and no stars seen except for Venus and maybe Jupiter if well placed. A few street lamps on sensors did light up but were of no consequence and didn't spoil the event. Hope that helps:-)


  20. Yep - I'm passionate about avoiding light pollution but 50% of houses in our street have have lights including me! But at least they all disappear on 12th Night and low down unlike the Guy Faukes sky show that goes on here for weeks and does ruin the night sky. Christmas lights have no effect on my obs from my cosy dome:-)


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