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About Hughsie

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    Star Forming

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    Football (Spurs), F1, fishing, long walks, real ale and a good book.
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    UK, North Essex
  1. I agree David. I feel there is more detail in the mono especially when the image is inverted plus I find some false colour images can appear a bit overcooked which can be distracting.
  2. Managed to get around to processing some of the other data captured 2 August 2020. Depending on your flavour I have produced the images in greyscale and false colour. Images 1 & 2 show AR 2768 Images 3 & 4 show a close-up of the prominence on the south eastern limb. Thank you for checking in. John
  3. Here are a few images taken this morning in H-alpha. Full disc with some prominences but nothing as large as we have seen in recent days. Also AR2768 an active region with no sun spot giving us a bit of contrast on what is a fairly blank-ish disc. Represented in greyscale and false colour. John
  4. Thanks Merlin, this is brilliant. Earlier today I brought the image up in Affinity Photo and used the rulers tool to measure the diameter of the disc. This came out at 28.12 cm so representing the diameter of the Sun at 1.3927 million km. Next I applied two further rulers to the tip and root of the prominence creating a right angled triangle with the prominence as the hypotenuse. This gave me two sides of the triangle at 2.57 cm and 1.69 cm. Using Pythagorus Theorum I calculated the length of the hypotenuse as the square root of the sum of the squared sides; 3.08 cm. So, if 28.12 cm is equivalent to 1.3927 million km then 3.08 cm is 152,543 km which is certainly close to what the overlay suggests. John
  5. Does anyone know how we can find out how big it is?
  6. Busy day today. According to Spaceweather Live, AR2768 is coming around the north western limb. The large prominence is still doing its thing and we are soon to say good bye to AR2767. Best 200 out of 1,000 frames stacked in AutoStakkert 2, initially processing in ImPPG and tweaked a bit in PixInsight. I was out imaging the green channel for my Iris Nebula project last night and so removed the WO Z103 imaging scope this morning and swapped it out for my Lunt LS60THa adding the ZWO ASI174mm camera to capture today’s activity. Thank you for checking in. John
  7. When this active region was first spotted I looked at the weather forecast and practically gave up on it. I was so down about it I nearly turned to imaging comets! But a window in the clouds appeared today and first thing this morning I was all set up waiting for the Sun to clear a tree in the East and rise higher. I have been fortunate as no sooner had I finished broken clouds started to roll in. So here is my capture of AR2767 both in greyscale and false colour. Equipment Used Lunt LS60THa/B1200CPT ZWO ASI174mm (Exposure 4.06ms, Gain = 0) SkyWatcher EQ6R-Pro Tele Vue 5x Powermate SharpCap Pro for capturing and application of Flats. Process 75% of 200 frames stacked using AutoStakkert 2. ABE, Curves, Contrast, Sharpening and Colour applied using PixInsight. Thank you for checking in. John
  8. Took this image for a bit of fun on Friday 10 July 2020 as the Moon was knocking around. There isn’t much data here but Hydrogen alpha can be quite forgiving and I will be adding more to it when the weather allows. Overall there are 55 subframes of 3 minutes each calibrated, stacked, kicked around, stretched and kneeded in PixInsight. So here is my brief rendition of an Elephant meeting a Death Eater. Enjoy. John
  9. ZWO ASI174mm on 8 bit I get 130 fps
  10. Last night I was imaging IC 1396 in Ha and had good polar alignment so having captured my calibration frames this morning I decided to mount the Lunt 60mm on to the EQ6R-Pro. Bit overkill but it tracked the old current bun nicely. Sadly, she has yet to wake up or perhaps she knew it was me imaging but I still hope that one day something will happen. All good things to those that wait I guess. Anyway, he is a full disc image from this morning, a few small proms were showing but nothing to get too excited about. Thank you for checking in. John
  11. Having spent all last week under cloud cover and so missing out on all the action, today I was presented with broken clouds, high wind and a Class A hangover. Guess what? The Sun is quiet again! Here it is, the best 200 frames from a mediocre batch of 1,000. Stacked in AutoStakkert2 and butchered in PixInsight. Image captured using the following; Lunt 60mm & B1200 ZWO ASI 174MM (130 fps, Gain 0, exposure 8.3ms) Baader Moon 0.9 Neutral Density Filter SkyWatcher SolarQuest SharpCap Pro Two Cans of Diet Coke and a Pork Pie. Thank you for checking in. John
  12. Does that help Rob? Probably will be the best way to read it!
  13. I hope people don’t mind but I wanted to share this article which I have written for my astronomy club newsletter. It follows on from the fantastic videos which SGL has hosted over recent weeks and the inspiration it has given me to do something different. John A night with Hercules Lockdown has touched us all in different ways and we now find ourselves using new technologies for entertainment and socialising outside of the traditional TV, books and movies. Zoom, Skype and Teamster have now entered our vocabulary and have kept us in contact with family, friends and colleagues. YouTube has become another source of education and/or entertainment and in the world of Astronomy it allows us to keep in touch with missed BAA presentations and similar offerings from amateur and professional contributors. Who would have thought the day would come when part of your evening entertainment would be to catch up on a recording on music relating to astronomy “Herschel to Hawkwind”! Recently I was inspired by such a Zoom presentation, not to take up the trumpet (though playing it under the stars at 2am to the annoyance of my neighbour and his bright security light did cross my mind) no, this was two excellent presentations by Ian and Mark @ Beaufort on splitting doubles and a guide to observing. On this occasion the host was The Stargazers Lounge, an astronomy forum which now produces weekly presentations on all manner of astronomy related subjects. For more information see https://stargazerslounge.com The first presentation on doubles concentrated on five easy targets which anyone with a good pair of binoculars or a small scope would have no problem splitting. This was followed by a really interesting guide on observing in which the presenter walked through his approach to equipment, set up, target acquisition and the actual session itself. The video presented by Ian and Mark can be found here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qcHaTnrLaJw&t=0s Astronomy can be as simple or as complicated as you want it to be and my garage is a testament to this with GOTO mounts, GPS, cables, cameras and the plethora of technology that never seems to end. Sometimes, the Mark I eyeball is good enough, though maybe on this occasion we will stretch to a small scope. Back to basics So, duly inspired to return to visual astronomy I broke out my Celestron Nexstar 6SE (F/L 1500mm) and SkyWatcher AZ5 mount. No GOTO, no electronics or gizmos unless you count my red dot finder. I also grabbed four eyepieces; 25mm, 15mm and 12mm BST StarGuiders with a 60 apparent field of view and a 40mm Vixen NPL with a 40° apparent field of view. Each offered 60x, 100x, 125x and 37.5x magnification respectively and fields of view ranging from 1° to 0.48°. In addition, I dusted off my copy of the Illustrated Guide to Astronomical Wonders, Sky & Telescope’s Pocket Sky Atlas and Interstellarium Deep Sky Atlas. Tonight, planetarium software would be left on the shelf and play no part. Using the techniques described in the video I sat down yesterday evening with the Sky & Telescope Pocket Sky Atlas and determined that my target that night would be the constellation Hercules. Just after 11pm it would be visible high in the South where I would have a good clear view of it. I then turned to the Illustrated Guide to Astronomical Wonders which provides details of targets to view in each constellation. Looking up Hercules I decided to keep the session light touch and just concentrate on five targets. On this occasion I chose; 64 (Rasalgethi) - an easy double. 65 (Sarin) - another double just north of Rasalgethi. 75 - the last double on the list close to the upper left star making up the Hercules ‘keystone’ asterism. M13 - obviously! A beautiful globular cluster. M92 - another globular cluster but slightly harder to locate. These targets were listed in my observing notes along with RA/Dec and the pages where they appear in the Pocket Sky Atlas and the more detailed Deep Sky Atlas. Both of these books would join me outside tonight. Session Observing commenced at 10pm BST and too early to observe my targets as the sky remained light. The Moon was visible in the West and I took the opportunity to check that my red dot finder was properly aligned to my telescope. Having established all was well with the finderscope I then took a look around the waxing crescent with my eyepieces. I must confess that I am ignorant of the Moon. As I spend most of my time imaging, I tend to either try and avoid it or shake my fist at it when gradients appear in my hard earned data. Tonight, I was in awe of it. Sadly, I couldn’t tell you the names of what I was looking at so maybe there is another project in the making. By now Arcturus had revealed itself to me and I rotated the mount East and North to bring it into view. Lining up the red dot finder brought Arcturus into the centre of my 40mm eyepiece and I slowly worked through each, enjoying that soft red glow. The star was also shimmering due to the days heat rising from the ground and I thought that this would be a problem later but it proved not to be the case. Having enjoyed Arcturus, I looked further East and could make out the triangle of Rasalhague and Kappa Ophiuchi with my first target, Rasalgethi, at the apex. Aligning my red dot finder, I was able to bring Rasalgethi into view. Both my 40m and 25mm eyepieces failed to separate the primary and secondary, however, switching to 100x magnification I did discern a small separation which was confirmed when I stepped up to 125x. I don’t’ know about you but I now see why observing doubles is so popular, watching that split ‘pop’ into view is so satisfying. Having seen that I could split two stars with a separation of 4.8”, I was confident about the rest of the night. Turning my attention North and a slightly easier separation of 11” between Sarin and its secondary, I could just make out a split between the two with my 40mm. My 25mm confirmed this as a clear double and Sarin’s white colour. The secondary was more difficult and neither my 15mm or 12mm eyepiece could confirm the colour either. It is listed as blue-white so I will have to take that as read or buy a larger aperture scope! Moving on now to 75 Rho and the hardest double of the session with a separation of 4.0”. It was not only a hard because of the separation but also hard on my knees! “Oh, for a GOTO mount” I thought as I knelt on the patio looking up towards the Zenith through my finderscope wearing varifocal glasses and viewing through the wrong part of the lens. Not only was that a challenge but matters got worse when I discovered I couldn’t reach the slow-motion controls to move the scope. Oh, deep joy! Still, I persevered and was rewarded when my target came into view. 40mm revealed no split but the 25mm suggested a split with averted vision. I decided to confirm if I was correct before increasing the magnification by checking the position angle, yep 321degrees, roughly where I thought I could see it. At 100x magnification I confirmed the split and colour of both stars as white. Maintaining a steady image was difficult due to the vibration of the scope as I adjusted focus and this got worse when I stepped up to 125x. Adjusting the azimuth to bring the double to the East side of the eyepiece I watched it settle and come into focus as it drifted across to the West, a lovely sight. Next on the list was M13, the Great Hercules Cluster. By this stage I had decided not to observe M92. This was even further North than 75 Rho and I did not even want to imagine what position I would have to put myself in to locate it in the finderscope. Fittingly then I was saving the best view until last and it did not disappoint. Rather than contort my body to try and find M13, I took the chance that if I used my 40mm eyepiece with a 1degree field of view and rotated the scope towards the West I just might have M13 stumble into view…and it did. What a sight. At 37.5x it was a bright smudge in the centre of the eyepiece and moving up to 60x I could discern the bright core separated from the halo of stars surrounding it. With averted vision I thought I could resolve brighter individual stars outside of the cluster. 100x showed some of the brighter stars around the periphery of the core but 125x looked slightly dimmer and did not offer any additional detail. Conclusions The session ended at 23:54 BST and I could not have been happier with the outcome. I got to split some stars, view one of the best globular clusters in the Northern sky and stretch my back! Reflecting on last night, I now appreciate that viewing the night sky in this way is harder but it also gives you a sense of satisfaction. Being able to research your targets and plan a night’s observation is fulfilling and certainly gave me a better understanding of what I was looking at, how to use star charts and even where the cardinal points are in my eyepiece. I also think it helps your observing skills. Because I spent more time locating my targets, I felt compelled to spend more time with them and dare I say, observe rather than ‘see’. What would I do differently? I think it’s obvious don’t you…..I need to get better at star hopping for my back and knees sake!
  14. Close up of a prom from 11:09:39 UT today. Same equipment as above but with the inclusion of a 2.5x Powermate for the extra magnification. 213 frames of which the best 50% were used to produce the image. Possible pore showing as well?
  15. Hi Simmo, With embossing, I first make sure that i have flattened the image so that all previous actions are combined into one layer. I then copy the image using Cmd c (ctrl C) then paste it as a new layer above the original. I then select emboss and ramp up the strength to 300%. Usually 1 pixel works or there about then you can play around with the angle to you get something suitable. When done I change the view (next to ‘opacity’) from normal to soft light. Hope that helps.
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