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About lukebl

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Interests
    Norfolk Astronomer, bread-maker, bug and wine enthusiast. Come to Attleborough. At least it's not Watton.
  • Location
    Central Norfolk-ish somewhere, UK, 52°N 1°E ish
  1. I expect Webster Telescopes' website has seen a spike in its hits today! Interesting marketing technique!
  2. I think that there appears to be a bit of interesting activity in the NEB right now. This is my first meagre attempt at Jupter this season in terrible seeing, over my neighbour's roof last night early evening. There appear to be quite a few dark patches in the Belt, and the paler band above it (The North Tropical Zone, I believe it's called) looks an interesting shade of orangey-pink. Worth closer examination when it's a bit higher and in better seeing.
  3. Thanks folks. I've now downloaded the latest Visual C++ software, and it's all working now.
  4. Hi folks, After dropping and breaking my obsy laptop, I picked up a second-hand one and am in the process of installing all my software again. It's running Windows 7 and has been properly cleaned and checked by a reputable computer expert. All programs seem OK, except for Starlight Live. When I try and run it I keep getting the error message 'The program can't start because MSVCP140.dll is missing from your computer...' However, MSVCP140.dll is definitely there, in the folder Windows>System32. A search on the web reveals instances of this problem occurring with other software, but I haven't found a fix yet. Any ideas?
  5. Thanks, folks. A lot of things to think about there! Looking at my EQMOD settings, I noticed that the PulseGuide Settings are at the minimum rate of 0.10. Is that too low, or would that not have any effect on the problems I'm having?
  6. No, I'm not dithering. By the way, the mount has had the Rowan Belt mod, if that makes any difference.
  7. I've had a look at the log with PHD2 Log Viewer, but have absolutely no idea how to interpret what I see! I still don't understand how it could be balance. If PHD says it's locked-on and guiding, and the guidescope is firmly fixed with no flexure, I don't see how it could possibly drift like that. Surely it should stay put, or at least rotate around the guide star if it's PA? EDIT: Here's the PHD2 Log Viewer. Is it good or bad?
  8. Sorry for reviving this thread, but it's driving me bonkers. To recap, the field of view of my camera drifts over time, even when guiding seems perfect. My polar alignment is within 1 arc-minute of the pole, according to both Sharpcap and PHD, which I would have thought was close enough. Yet, the frame drifts evenly and steadily by a few arc-minutes over the period of an evening's captures and not rotationally. The stars appear round, but only because I restrict myself to 4-5 minute exposure max. I am using an ST80 guidescope, which is well clamped down to reduce flexure. I get identical effects when using a finder-guider. I would use my Off-axis guider, but have never managed to locate a guide star with it.
  9. Many thanks for the comments. I managed to capture a few hours of Ha and added it to the image, which I think gives it a bit of depth. I know that Ha is usually used to augment the red channel, but I've done it here in two flavours. Personally, I prefer the bluer version.
  10. I had some townie friends to stay at the weekend, and they were perturbed both by the night-time silence and darkness, and by the deafening roar of the dawn chorus. No pleasing some folk!
  11. The rotational nature of the movement suggests field rotation to me. i.e. Polar Alignment not quite right. I have a similar problem with my images inexplicably drifting over time, despite perfect guiding. However, mine are in a straight line indicating a different problem.
  12. Hi folks. I stumbled across this gorgeous pair of galaxies in Coma Berenices over the weekend, NGC 4725 and 4712. New to me. I just love the delicate details in the spiral. Apparently, 4725 is 40 Million LY away, and 4712 is around 200. Loads of faint distant galaxies also visible. This is the product of around 12 hours of 4 minute exposures, plus just 30 minutes each of R and B binned 2x. Atix 428ex, 200mm f/5 Newtonian. It was great to have a couple of consecutive clear nights for a change, and at the weekend too!
  13. Just found Venus really easily at 14:30 with 8 x 32 bins, just a couple of hours before inferior conjunction. For safety, I hid the sun behind my Obs, and found it immediately a few degrees away. A beautiful thin crescent, even at 8x. Brilliant!
  14. Hi folks, Here's my bash at Comet Tuttle–Giacobini–Kresák from last night. First clear night for weeks. Stacked in DSS on the Comet. Field of view c24.5 x 18.5 arcmin. How DO you get separate RGB images of a moving object like a comet without the stars coming out all technicolor? It'll be close to the Owl nebula tonight, so might try with a DSLR to get some colour.
  15. Hi folks, Not been imaging for months due to seeming endless cloud cover or excessively high winds. Here's a quick capture in bright moonlight in a rare gap in the clouds, just to keep my hand in. I don't normally image clusters, but with a fullish moon I thought it would be the best sort of target and I'm quite pleased with it. NGC 663 is located 7,000 light years distant in Cassiopeia, estimated to be 20 Million years old and is number 10 in the Caldwell catalogue. The cluster was discovered by William Herschel on November 3, 1787. A lot of hot blue stars there, with a few red/yellow ones to make it interesting. Atik 428ex, 200 f/5 Newt, 50 x 1 minute exposures Lum, 20 x 1 minute each of R and B, synthesised Green. Field of view: 29.9 x 22.5 arcmin.