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lukebl last won the day on August 3 2019

lukebl had the most liked content!

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About lukebl

  • Rank
    Red Dwarf

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  • 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. First bit of imaging for a very long time due to the diabolical weather. I'm wondering if I'm expecting too much from my 8" Ritchey-Chretien. I had hoped that it would give sharper results than, say, my old 10" Newtonian which I very much regret selling. Of all the scopes I've ever owned (which includes 12" LX200 Meades), it gave the sharpest results. Incredible bang for your buck. What do others think? Anyway, this is a capture with the 8" RC, plus 3x Televue Barlow, ZWO ASI290 Mono Mini and IR, Green and Blue filters. c 30,000 frames for IR, 15,000 each for G and B. 4ms exposures. I had better results with the Newt back in the opposition of 2014 when Mars had a diameter of only around 15 arcs secs, compared with 21 now. Like I said, am I expecting too much of the RC? It seems well collimated now, so I doubt if I can improve on it. Here is an animation based on 12 x 5000-frame videos captured every 5 minutes with the IR filter, thus showing an hour's rotation. I find an animation is very useful as it can show which details are real and whch might be imaging artifacts. For instance, the series of dark patches around the pole move with the rotation, so are clearly real features. As a bonus, I used the same setup to capture Saturn, Jupiter and Uranus. Obviously here in the UK Jupiter and Saturn are lurking in the murk just a few degrees above the horizon so look terrible, but there was a Ganymede shadow transit which you can make out. I also used a long exposure on Uranus and Saturn to capture moons down to about mag 14.5. I hadn't expected the planetary camera plus barlow to be able to go that deep. Jupiter and Ganymede shadow Saturn Saturn's moons (no barlow) with labels... Uranus with labels...
  2. Nice and sharp. The skies cleared here for the first time in weeks too, but seeing was diabolical.
  3. This is a brief animation of Io and its shadow transit from last night, 17th September 2020, 19:55 to 20:25 GMT. I captured 5000 frames at about 100 fps every 5 minutes. ASI290MM Mono Mini cam, 200mm f/5 Newtonian, 3x Televue Barlow, Baader IR filter. As you'd expect, with it being only 14 degrees above the horizon, seeing was absolutely atrocious so there's not much detail. What you can see, though, is that there seems to be a lot of disturbance at the moment in North Equatorial Belt, with a large barge directly under the shadow and a circular feature appearing on the left (obvs. not the GRS as that's in the SEQ). Here's a few of the pre-processed individual frames, to show you what I was up against!
  4. It's all very exciting stuff but apparently phosphine also occurs in the atmospheres of Jupiter and Saturn. There was no big fuss about them having it. If it can occur non-biologically on those planets, why not Venus too?
  5. I agree. I should have read the original post more thoroughly. Sorry!
  6. I very much doubt that it will be anything astounding. I hardly think that the world scientific community would patiently wait for a slot on a minor TV show from a minor little country to announce something BIG!
  7. I agree with all the sentiments about the winning picture not being art or even astronomy. In fact I think it's horrible fakery. In the words of Father Ted: 'Down with this sort of thing!'
  8. I recently read that, until about 120 million years ago, Sirius B, the Pup, was a red giant star until it collapsed into its current form as a white dwarf. That got me thinking. 120 million years isn't a long time in astronomical or geological time. Life was abundant on planet earth. I just wonder what a red giant star only 8 light years away would have looked like to our animal ancestors. Currently, the closest red giant is apparently Gamma Crucis at magnitude 1.63 at a distance of about 90 light years. Presumably, Sirius B would have been many, many times brighter being ten times closer. Any ideas what its magnitude might have been.
  9. Hi all. This is a product my first imaging session for a very long while, and my first attempt at Mars this season. Captured at about 2:30 BST, 9th September. Omegon RC8, 3x Televue Barlow, ZWO ASI 290MM Mini Mono camera. c. 10,000 frames per channel I used an IR pass filter for the red channel. It brought out quite a bit of detail, but it caused an 'onion ring' effect which I recall often happens when imaging Jupiter. Is that something to do with the gain settings or under-exposure or something? Anyway, I think you can make out Olympus Mons top right and possibly some bright clouds associated with Arsia Mons below it.
  10. No. 01:10 British Summer Time! Thanks! Canon 700d DSLR, 8mm Samyang fisheye, f/3.5 30 second exposures, ISO 1600
  11. Whilst trawling through my images from last night, I found this fine Perseid which left a trail which lasted several minutes. It appeared at around 00:10 UT. Here's a crop from each of the subsequent images, showing that trail was still visible after at least four minutes. I particularly like the one immediately after the meteor appeared. Each image was 30 seconds, captured with a Canon 700d, ISO 1600, 8mm Samyang at f3.5 And here's an animation
  12. I stayed up till about mignight last night to watch the Persieds, and was pretty disappointed. Only saw, maybe, 4-5 per hour, although there was a fair bit of high cloud. There was one spectacular one, though. Low, beneath Ursa major and maybe magnitude -4. Unfortunately, the camera was pointing the other way. I decided to risk the threat of thunderstorms and left the camera out all night. I captured a few. Here's the best one. About 23:45UT. Canon 700d, 30 seconds, ISO 1600, Samyang 8mm f/3.5.
  13. Can anyone explain if I can avoid this artifact? This is a dual capture of the sun from yesterday: an avi with short exposures for the surface, and an avi with longer exposures for the prominences. Captured with Sharpcap using a QHY5-ii mono cam and a plain unmodded Coronado PST. The capture of the prominences creates a horizontal bright line at the top and bottom of the sun. I'm assuming it's something to do with the grossly overexposed solar disk when capturing the prominences, and possibly unavoidable with this particular camera?
  14. Very nice, but I'm more impressed by your Slik tripod! It's a classic. I've had a Slik Master since the 1990s, and have never replaced it because of the sheer quality and ease and smoothness of action. I've tried other, modern tripods and they seem too fiddly and just don't match it.
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