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About lukebl

  • Rank
    Red Dwarf
  • Birthday 25/08/1959

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. Very cool! I've used Muniwin (on your recommendation) on Variable stars and asteroids, but must try on some exoplanets. Some of them have orbits of only a few hours, so they can't be much like 'our' planets!
  2. Dwarf Planet 136108 Haumea was at opposition a couple of days ago, around magnitude 17 in Bootes. Its amazing to think that it was only discovered 13 years ago, yet it's large, around 1960km across. Currently 49.6 AU distant, compared to Pluto, which is a 'mere' 33.3 AU away. This is a rough animation of two captures 24 hours apart. Even a thing that distant still moves noticeably. Atik 428ex, 200mm f/5 Newtonian, 10 x 60s exposures. Field of view of big image 29.6 x 22.2 arcmin.
  3. Hi folks, This is something I've been working on a for a few weeks, what with there being almost no clear skies here in Eastern England. It is the result of over 25 hours of captures. It's NGC 4651, Arp189, part of the Virgo cluster and in Coma Berenices, generally apparently called the Umbrella Galaxy, but I much prefer to call it the 'Wineglass Galaxy' or maybe even the 'Tie Fighter' galaxy to keep in with the Star Wars theme!. I stumbled across it whilst browsing APOD. It's a truly remarkable and beautiful object with some incredibly faint features, which my 25 hours of captures have only just managed to pull out. Apparently it's about the size of our Milky Way, with a faint umbrella-shaped structure that seems to extend some 100 thousand light-years beyond the bright galactic disk. The giant cosmic umbrella is now known to be composed of tidal star streams - extensive trails of stars gravitationally stripped from a smaller satellite galaxy. The small galaxy was eventually torn apart in repeated encounters as it swept back and forth on eccentric orbits through NGC 4651. 269 x 5 & 6 minute exposures, Atik 428ex, 200mm f/5 Newtonian. Colour was captured with a Canon 700d, 40 x 3 minute exposures. Stacked in DSS and processed in Photoshop. Field of view 23.4 x 29.8 arcmin. The galaxy core itself is quite bright at magnitude 11 and visible in half-second exposures, but the faint jets of stars only appeared after much stacking and stretching. There's also a quasar in the background, 3C 275.1.
  4. Show us your set up in action at night.

    After what seems like months of leaden skies, I'm finally out in the obsy! Here's my roll-away Tardis Obs and 200mm Newt ready to go.
  5. International Space Station lunar transit

    Very nice. I've only ever captured an ISS transit when it's been in shadow. Unusual to see it illuminated.
  6. CdC custom horizon

    I have now had a go at preparing my own custom horizon with Carte du Ciel. It's really very simple. Just align the scope and slew to various points on your horizon and note down the Azimuth and Altitude of that spot. Then save it all as a text file and load it in CdC. Here's my result. Pretty obscured really, by my house to the north and neighbouring trees everywhere else! Southern horizon: Northern horizon: The text file looks like this. Azimuth on the left, altitude on the right. Simples!
  7. CdC custom horizon

    Thanks for reminding me about this as I much prefer CDC and have always wanted to show my own horizon. I think the answer is here: https://www.ap-i.net/skychart/en/documentation/observatory I'll be giving it a go myself now.
  8. M1 The Crab

    Superb. It's great to see it in its wider context too.
  9. As you already have a SW coma corrector, I'm wondering why you feel the need to get another one? As point of interest, I have both the SW one which I use with my DSLR, and a Baader one which I use with my CCD. The Baader one doesn't change the focal length, but the SW one changes the FL by 0.9x.
  10. Us ordinary mortals can just dream of either!
  11. My TARDIS observatory in the snow

    Disappointingly, my Tardis is actually smaller on the inside. But it's amazing what will fit in it. I found a Muntjac deer in it one morning!
  12. RunCam Night Eagle camera anyone?

    Not questioning FPV flying, although it seems a very antisocial and intrusive pastime. Just the weirdness of wanting to do it at night!
  13. RunCam Night Eagle camera anyone?

    It seems that the Night Eagle cam was developed for nocturnal Drone flying. Who on earth, apart from the military, would need or want such a thing? But I guess it's America. Anything goes!
  14. RunCam Night Eagle camera anyone?

    Thanks, furrysocks2. I saw your earlier posts, but note that there was very little response. Looks like the Astro Edition could be a handy, and inexpensive, piece of kit if it were easily available.
  15. Here's my Tardis Observatory (IAU code K05) braving up to the Beast from the East. Captured on my iPhone with NightCap in 'Light Trails' mode. Any more pics of your obsys in the snow?