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About astrovirus

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    Star Forming

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    Emmen, The Netherlands
  1. Thanks for all the nice comments. I have done some slight tweaking to see if I can make the Ha areas stand out a bit more with this one.
  2. My second image of last weekend session was M33, which I imaged before going to M42. It consists of 9 hours 20 min of data in 5 min subs at ISO800, calibrated with darks, flats and bias in DSS and processed in Nebulosity 2.5 and PS CS3 by the DLSR-LRGB method. The data was an absolute joy to process and took me not all that much time to reach a satisfactory result. hope you agree on that.
  3. So we had some fine weather overhere in The Netherlands during the past 3 weeks, and I took full advantage of the clear nights arounbd the full blood moon (which for me was eclipsed not by the Earth's shadow but by grey clouds as I live in the only part of the country that did not have a clear night during the eclipse) and shot some lovely Ha data of NGC6914 (awaiting processing) and Messier 42 during the second part of the night. The Ha data comprises 7 and half hours of 10 min subs at ISO800 with the Canon 350D/8"Newt, calibrated with darks, flats and bias in DSS and processed in PS CS3. Last weekend, we again had lovely clear nights, and so I shot some RGB data on the Canon 350D/8" Newt combo as well. Also imaged M33 during those nights while waiting for M42 to rise, but again that data still awaits processing. The RGB image consists of 6 hours 25 min of 5 min subs at ISO800, calibrated with darks, flats and bias in DSS and processed by the DSLR-LRGB method in PS CS3. I had wanted to add the Ha data to the RGB image, but for now, it doesnt seem to significantly improve the image, so I just left it out. Hope you enjoy these images, I do, as it was the first time I could image M42 with it not moving through the trees every couple of hours. Great to have my LOMO observatory on my balcony.
  4. Thanks everybody, This is truely a joy to have such an observatory and be able to do astrophotography within the blink of eye. Now if only the weather would be a little more cooperative.
  5. After a question from one of the forum members about how everything is running, I thought it would be good to share my first 3 images made from the balcony observatory. I think the results speak for them self with regard to thermal and/or vibration issues.
  6. Here is what i build to accomodate a similar setup. This is as small as you may get it. LOMO; a Balcony Micro Observatory
  7. Thanks for all the nice comments, and it's good to be able to shoot some nice images again. I'm really pleased with the comfort of comming home from work, open the observatory and be up and running within about 15 minutes. Also thanks for pointing out the green colorcast, which is very difficult for me to observe being a red and green color blind person, and therefore having a biased color interpretation. i have to go by the histogram for most of my color balancing, and weakt color casts are always problematic if i'm not made aware of these. so I did some HLVG magic on the original image and this is how it came out now:
  8. I has been about 18 months ago since i had imaged from my home (September 2013) and in between i had only aquired 2 images during the spring/summer of 2014, when i went camping with my family, so i had gotten a bit rusty. I build myself an observatory on my 2nd floor balcony, but when I finally got around installing all the equipment in the fall of 2014, the Dutch weather put off a serious first light for almost the entire winter. Also because i still had some finetuning to do to the alignment (and I don't like that being outside at -10°C, having to tinker woth the bolts and bits), and because for some reason all clear nights coincided with me having other things at hand. So finally last week, we had some nice clear spring nights and just siad, forget about the fine tuning (that's for full moon nights) and let's give the LOMO a proper first light run for its money. Decided to take on NGC5371 & Hickson 68 Galaxy group, and it turns out this is an object that isn't imaged that often by DSLR. In the end I aquired 9 hours and 20 minutes of data in 5 minute subs with the Canon 350Da at ISO800 and the TEC@ 0°C. Calibrated with 80 darks, 30 flats and 100 bias frames in DSS and post-processed with PS CS3 (DSLR-LRGB method). I am more than satisfied with how the imaged turned out, although i pushed it to about the limit as the remains of my dust motes are starting to show up just a little bit. hope you like it too, thanks for watching.
  9. So, finally a clear night without any other obligations, so spent some time on polar aligning the NEQ6 using AstroTortilla Polar Alignment tool. Despite having read some bad experiences with this tool, I have to say it worked out rather well to get my mount reasonably polar aligned without having any views of polaris from my balcony. Also using Alignmaster proves difficult as it has a preference for N-S star pairs and I have hardly any view towards the Northern skies. With a couple of itterations AT now reports my altitude error as 48' (coming from 5°) and my azimuth error was around 2-3' so I left that alone. Plate solved corrected goto precision is now spot on and I already tested shooting 5 minute guided subs with no problems. Looks like LOMO is now truly getting ready for a serious first light.
  10. Bad luck last night,as clouds prevented polar aligning the mount. Hopefully this week will bring a clear night to do so.
  11. So, finally managed to take some images to show the latest progress. Control PC ready for action on polar algnment tonight. On the right is a simple weather station to monitor temperature and humidity in the observatory when not in use. Another view of the control unit with the imaging equipment ready for action in the background. The PC is attached to the monitor stand so it has a nice small footprint. Camera mounted, with all needed cables/hub. Finder guider and main data cable. Outdoor sensor of the weatherstation mounted on the lower casing of the observatory. In the background, some of the polystyrene isolation I'm in the process of installing is visable.
  12. Is that a dewheater on your primary? Isn't that giving poor views due to creating tube currents from the injected heat. I know someone on the Dutch Astroforum did the same and he removed straight away as it removed the dew, but also ruined his images. To prevent dew it's better to blow away the boundery layer above the mirror with a Mauro da Lio baffle with fan.
  13. I'm in the process of downloading/installing AT right now, which also has an plate solving polar alignment function build in.
  14. That's handy if not for the fact that I have the syntrek version of the NEQ6, so no hand controler, so I would need to have someone over who has one. I'll keep it mind though as I have some friends with hand controlers.
  15. LOMO is alive. Yesterday I got around to instal the rest of the equipment and started to prepare the control PC with the much needed software. All connections between software and equipment are up and running, so I'm nearing "first light". However, before that, polar aligning will prove somewhat of a challenge as I have almost no view of the Northern sky and Alignmaster strongly favors starpairs with a component in the Northern sky. So I'll probably will also try the polar alignment help in AstroTortilla, or EQalign to perform polar alignment. Images of the completed setup will follow in the coming days, as there is still some cable mess to sort out on the observatory floor.
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