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Ken Mitchell

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Ken Mitchell last won the day on July 14

Ken Mitchell had the most liked content!

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About Ken Mitchell

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    Star Forming

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  1. Congrats! For a first this is exceptionally good! Looks like you will be enjoying the SA a lot Can you share more info on your gear and settings? Ken
  2. Thanks! Did a new target yesterday, located just at the left from the last image. Unfortunately I had to remove 1.5hr of subs due to startrails. Not sure what caused this. Guiding and PA was good. I'm thinking it has something to do with balancing as it happened before when the mount was in the same position. Have to look into that. Ken
  3. Thanks a lot. Nope, no mods done on the d610. Summer nights are fairly 'cold' here, 70ºF at night atm Ken
  4. Thanks! Not sure if bortle 4 is considered as dark skies? But I can't complain I guess, as it's pretty easy to see the Milky Way from my backyard. Ken
  5. I'm in love with dark nebulae! A couple of dark nebula targets I did the past week. If someone has advice/recommendations on other dark nebula targets suited for a 72mm apo + dslr please let me know. Ken ---------------------------------------------- Imaging set up: TS72mmf6 apo +ff Nikon d610(stock) Guiding set up: TS50mm guidescope + zwo asi120mcs Tracking: Skywatcher Star Adventurer --------- The snake Nebula Complex in Ophiuchus (07/29/2020) total of 30 minutes with 240sec subs Barnard's E dark Nebula in Aquila (07/29/2020) total of 120 minutes with 240sec subs Dark Nebula in Vulpecula (08/04/2020) total of 280 minutes with 180sec subs
  6. Update: So I recently purchased the Explore Scientific x3 focal extender. Done some tests with it and must say I'm very pleased with its performance. My biggest concerns were softness and vignette in the corners but I can't see any of those in the images I took. Here are some examples taken with the barlow+72mm apo and zwo asi120mcs Ken Moon mosaic from 07/13/2020 Moon mosaic from 07/26/2020 Jupiter 07/14/2020 Saturn 07/14/2020 Venus 10/07/2020 Mars 07/19/2020
  7. Just finished 2 days imaging at Cygnus. Always wanted to do a widefield of the N-America and Butterfly nebula. Decided to do a two panel mosaic, nothing fancy, so one target/night. Managed to do 4 hrs each night, which should be enough to get decent amount of detail. The first time I'm trying this region with a modded dslr, had good hopes after seeing some of the results from other members Although at first sight I was a bit disappointed. The original stack didn't show too much data but after doing some stretching a lot of the Ha nebula showed up. The more I processed the image the more 'hidden treasures' were revealed. The most difficult part was the blending, as I decided to do 2 panels and wanted to get as much sky in the image, I only had an overlap of maybe 15%. So blending both with a lens that suffers from 'minor' coma this was a challenge. A zoom into the image reveals some areas where I did the stitching and blending, just look the other way and no one will notice Here are some of the details on the image and equipment: Nikon d90(mod) Nikkor 80-200mm f2.8 settings: 125mm, f4, iso400 2 panels of 4hrs each, 300 seconds subs guiding: ZWO asi120mcs TS 50mm guidescope Tracking: Skywatcher Star Adventurer software: guiding: phd2 Stacking: Deepskystacker 4.2.2 Processing: Adobe Photoshop Ken
  8. 4 days of active region AR12767 Ken
  9. Got a clear day today. Comparison of AR12767 from 07/22/2020(left) and 07/24/2020(right) Sunspot looks stable, not much difference between the two days. Umbra seems to have increased slightly though. Ken
  10. Was hoping to do a new session today to do a comparison, guess what ... Ken
  11. For solar enthusiasts, a new active region is facing Earth, AR12767 with HSX classification (McIntosh classification). Here is an image of it I shot in false color on 07/22/2020 Equipment: ZWO asi120mcs, TS72f6, ESx3 focal extender, Baader solar film nd5, SWSA Ken
  12. Been doing a bit of planetary work with the SA lately. Got my first 'decent' image of Venus, Jupiter and Saturn a week ago. This hobby is so addictive I immediately bought the x3 Explore Scientific 1.25" focal extender. After reading nothing but positive comments on the optics I was thrilled to give it a go myself. My goal was to do a mosaic of the Moon. The first opportunity I got, which was 8 am during sunrise, I got out and started imaging. What a great feeling seeing the Moon so close! It felt like 30 years ago, a 10 year old kid looking for the first time through a telescope at the Moon. Can't wait to explore those craters and Moon features a bit more. I took about 30 panels, to make sure I had every part of it. Sessions of 100 frames each, stacked in AS3! and run some wavelets in Registax. The files were imported in Photoshop, aligned and blended using auto panorama mode. Removed some of the missing frames in the background and did some pp in adobe raw. Camera: zwo asi120 mcs Optics: TS72 refractor with ff ES focal extender x3 Captured with ASIcap Ken
  13. Ciarán, The different exposures were planned for 2 reasons. First, as you mentioned, I wanted to make sure having enough short exposures/data to get as much detail in the core and surroundings. Second, this was taken in the morning so as the minutes passed the sky becomes brighter and the comet will get lost in the background. So shorter exposure will compensate for the background brightness and at the same time get the detail for the core. I started with a 30 second frame session and reduced the exposure with 5 seconds every 20 frames or so. Hope that makes sense. Ken
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