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Found 91 results

  1. Hi, I bought my first telescope, SW 150pds about 6 months ago with the purpose of astroimaging "when i feel ready". So far ive used my Nikon D810 for that, and I'm now planning on taking the step buying my first AP camera. My targets would be DSO's, and not planetary. I want a mono-camera, not color. I want to get away with a very good camera to a reasonable price (wouldn't we all...) and in this regard I've been drooling on the ZWO ASI 1600MM Mono for some time. The price for it is in the upper part of my budget, but I'm willing to if its worth it. I've seen from other treads that sensor-size isn't everything, and dynamic range and gain and all is just as important, but i have trouble understanding it all 100% when it's all new to me, but in my experience i am a practical person who learns things much better and faster with the gear in my hand. So without getting to technical, and staying as objective as possible - please help me with; 1. Is this a good camera to go for? 2. It's sold with options of filters 1.25", 31mm or 36mm - Why these options, and what determines what i would choose? 3. Would you go for another camera in this price range, and why? - Or to rephrase it a bit; If you were in my shoes, which camera would you og for? I'd appreciate any help:) I might add, that i understand that with my lack of experience, buying a mono-camera with filters and all might seem premature, but for some strange reason. I enjoy these "way over my head"-projects and figuring out things as time goes - I just need some guiding in the right direction.
  2. Hi all, Not sure I'm in the right place or not but I was hoping someone could help... I have an Altair Astro GPCamV2 and the box tells you to get the software from http://cameras.altairastro.com/ and that it will only work with Windows! I was wondering if anyone else has gotten this type of cam working on a Linux os before and what the steps were for doing so. (Other software that will work, terminal commands for the drivers etc.) thank you in advance ?
  3. Bright Nebula NGC 6188 and open cluster NGC 6193 in Ara Magnitude +5.19, RA 16h 41m 42s, Dec -48deg 48' 46" Approx. 3800 light years away Skywatcher Quattro 10" f4 Newtonian. Skywatcher AZ Eq6 GT Mount (on concrete pier) Orion 80mm f5 guide scope and auto guider - PHD2. Baader MPCC Mark 3 Coma Corrector, UHC-S 'nebula' filter. Nikon D5300 (unmodified). Field of view (deg) ~ 1.35 x 0.90. UHC-S - 32 x 180 sec ISO800 (14bit NEF, Long Exp. NR on). Pixinsight and photoshop 7 July 15 (processed 29 August 15) Other images: photo.net/photos/MikeODay 500px.com/mikeoday
  4. Observations of the Sculptor Galaxy ( NGC 253 ) by William and John Herschel ......... Part 2. Observations of "Caroline's Galaxy" by Sir John Herschel, 1830's Sir John Herschel, the only child of Mary Baldwin and Sir William Herschel, was born in 1792 when his father was in middle age and already famous as one of world's leading astronomers. Having excelled in school, and no doubt inspired by his famous elders, John Herschel decided upon a career as a 'man of science' and set out to pursue a wide range of interests; with one particular focus being a continuation of the study of the heavens commenced by his father and aunt, Caroline Herschel. In 1820, with the assistance of his father, John Herschel supervised the construction of a new telescope at Slough in England. As described in the extract below ( from a paper presented to the Royal Society in 1826, titled "Account of some observations made with a 20-feet reflecting telescope ... " ), the telescope had a polished metal mirror with clear aperture of 18 inches, focal length of 20 feet and was modelled on the same design created by his father. It is this telescope, in the 1820’s and early 30’s, following the death of his father and the return of his aunt Caroline to Hanover, that John Herschel used to 'sweep' the night sky and extend the catalogue of nebulae and clusters of stars that was published by his father ( see W. Herschel's Catalogue of One Thousand new Nebulae and Clusters of Stars ). On the 1st of July 1833, having complied sufficient observations, John Herschel presented to the Royal Society an updated list of the positions and descriptions of the Nebulae and Clusters of Stars that he had thus far observed. As noted in the introduction to the paper published in the Philosophical Transactions, he had planned to wait before publishing until he had complied a fully comprehensive general catalogue of objects visible from the south of England. However, due to his expectation of “several more more years additional work” needed to complete the task and his assessment that he now was in a position to address, at least in part, the then current “... want of an extensive list of nebulae arranged in order of right ascension ...”, he elected to present his list, “ ... simply stating the individual results of such observations as I have hitherto made ... “. It was not until October 16, 1863, some thirty years later, that Sir John would deliver to the Royal Society his General Catalogue of Nebulae and Clusters of Stars. As well as introducing many objects that had not previously been recorded, Sir John’s list of 1833 included a re-examination of, and in some cases a small correction to, the positions of many of the deep sky objects observed by his father and noted down by his aunt. One of these re-visited objects was, unsurprisingly, the large and bright nebula discovered by Caroline Herschel in 1783 and recorded in Sir Williams’s catalogue as V.1 / CH 10 ( object number one, of class five ( very large nebulae ) / Caroline Herschel #10 ). In total, John Herschel records around 2500 observations of nebulae and clusters of stars in his 1833 paper; with observation #61 being V.1, the “ Sculptor Galaxy “ . The measured position of V.1is given in RA and the angle from the north celestial pole ( all reduced to epoch 1830.0 ). The description can be interpreted by reference to the legend in the paper. Thus, “ A vL mE vB neb “ becomes “ A very large, much extended, elliptic or elongated, very bright nebula “. He also notes that in addition to this observation, #61, noted down from sweep #306, V.1 was also observed in sweep #292, “but no place was taken”. The figure to which he refers , figure 52, is included towards the back of his paper and is a sketch he made of the Sculptor Galaxy. to be continued ...
  5. The Discovery of the Sculptor Galaxy by Miss Caroline Herschel in 1783 On the 23rd of September 1783, sitting before her telescope in the field behind the house she shared with her brother William in Datchet near Slough in the south of England, Miss Caroline Herschel "swept" the sky searching for new comets and never before seen star clusters and nebulae. On this occasion, way down in the sky, not far above the Southern horizon, Miss Herschel saw and noted down a very bright and large nebula where one had never before been recorded and that was later recognised by her brother, Sir William, as the discovery by Caroline Herschel of the nebula he listed in his catalogue as H V.1. ( circ. 1825-33, Sir John Herschel, beloved nephew of Miss Caroline Herschel ) Today we know this 'nebula' to be, not as some thought then, a swirling mass of stars and gases within our own galaxy, but rather, a galaxy not unlike our own but way more distant than the outer reaches of of own Milkyway galaxy. Given various names, Silver Dollar Galaxy, Sliver Coin Galaxy or simply by its number in the New General Catalogue, NGC 253, it is most commonly called the Sculptor Galaxy and we owe its discovery to the first female professional astronomer. Caroline Herschel ( 1750 - 1848 ) ... ( link ) ( 1782 - 1783 ) ... ... ... H V.1 Observed ( by WH ): 30 Oct 1784 128 minutes, 17 seconds following and 1 degree, 39 minutes north of referenced star Description: - cB: "confidently bright" - mE: "much extended: - sp: "south preceding" - nf: "north following" -mbF: "much brighter middle" - size: 50' x 7 or 8' from: ( link ) ............................... The location reference to H V.1 ( NGC 253 ) in William Hershel's catalogue is in relation to a star found in Flamsteed's Catalogue, 18 Pis. Aust., which is #18 in Piscis Austrainus or Epsilon PsA, the 4th magnitude star HD214748 ( HIP111954 ) ( source ) ( Plate from "Atlas Coelestis" by John Flamsteed, 1646-1719 ) ------------------------------------- William Herschel found favour with the King and was granted a position as Royal Astronomer to George III in 1782. Shortly after, William and Caroline moved from Bath to Datchet ( near Windsor ) and took up residency in a rented house which, whilst somewhat delapadated and damp, had ample accommodation and fields for William to construct and deploy the large telescopes he wished to build. It was in these grounds that Caroline set up her "Sweeper" to look for comets and doing so also discovered a number of 'nebulae' including ( in 1783 ) what was later to become known as the Sculptor Galaxy. ( The Herschel house at Datchet near Windsor ) ( The Lawn, Horton Road, Slough ( Datchet ) - Google Maps ) ............. Caroline Herschel's "Sweeper" was a 27" focal length Newtonian telescope that was supported in a kind of altitude-azimuth mount consisting of a rotating table and a small gantry and pulley system that was used to effect altitude adjustments by sliding the tube up and down against a board used to provide stability. There has been some conjecture as to the exact details of the construction, however the image below, even if perhaps not the actual instrument, gives an indication of the overal design philosophy. Late in her life Caroline Herschel recorded details of her telescope in a booklet titled "My little Newtonian sweeper": In her memoir, Caroline Herschel describes the performance of her observations as the conducting of "horizontal sweeps"; from which one might assume the task consisted of setting the altitude in accordance with the plan for the night's observing and then slowing rotating the top of the table in azimuth as one observed and noted down the objects that passed across the view in the eyepiece. However, with the arrival of this new "telescopic sweeper" in the middle of 1783, Caroline Herschel added the new method of sweeping in the vertical, as noted below in an extract from her observing book ( source for both extracts: "Caroline Herschel as observer", Michael Hoskin, Journal for the History of Astronomy, 2005 ) .... The achievement of her discovery of the 'nebula' in the Sculptor constellation was remarkable in so many ways; not the least of which being the low path in the sky that the Sculptor galaxy follows when observed from Datchet in southern England - which on the night of her observation would not have exceeded 12 degrees or so above the horizon. Today, 234 years later, and blessed with 21st century luxuries and conveniences, I write on my IPAD and flip over to my planetarium application, SkySafari, and model the sky as it was seen by Caroline Herschel from near her house on the 23rd of September, 1783 ... ( SkySafari by Simulation Curriculum )
  6. Here's my second attempt withe the ASI120mm with RGB filter from Baader, I tried using the RRGB as suggested by THEO here on SGL for the extra luminance and I do think it's brought out a bit more detail. I know this has been contended before but what's the opinion on the Televue 2.5 powermate as opposed to the Revelation one I using?. Thanks Campbell
  7. Update 16th June: I could not wait to tell people that I was just notified that my image of Omega Centauri will be published as a future NASA's Astronomy Picture of the Day ( APOD ) - my first ever I will update the thread when they publish. ................................. A deep look at Omega Centauri ( NGC 5139 ) This image is an attempt to look deeply into the the Omega Centauri globular cluster by using HDR techniques to record as many faint stars as I can whilst retaining colour and detail in the bright stars, including at the core ... ............. Reprocessed to bring out more faint stars and to produce a smother transition between brightness levels. New version ( 12 June 2017 ): Omega Centauri ( NGC 5129 ) ( please click / tap on image to see lager and sharper ) .......... Old version: Omega Centauri ( NGC 5129 ) ( please click / tap on image to see full size and sharper ) Image details: from www.nova.astrometry.net: Size: 58.6 x 39 arcmins, Centre: 13h 26 min 50.4 sec, -47deg 28' 39.1''. Orientation: up is -89.9 East of North ( ie. E^ N> ). Telescope: Orion Optics CT12 Newtonian ( mirror 300mm, fl 1200mm, f4 ). Corrector: ASA 2" Coma Corrector Quattro 1.175x. Effective Focal Length / Aperture : 1410mm f4.7. Mount: Skywatcher AZ Eq6 GT. Guiding: TSOAG9 Off-Axis-Guider, Starlight Xpress Lodestar X2, PHD2 . Camera: Nikon D5300 (unmodified) (sensor 23.5 x 15.6mm, 6016x4016 3.9um pixels). No filter Long Exposure noise reduction off Location:. Blue Mountains, Australia. Moderate light pollution ( pale green zone on darksitefinder.com map ). Capture: 9 sets of sub-images with exposure duration for each set doubling ( 1s to 240s ) all at ISO800. Processing:. Calibration: master bias, master flat and no darks. Integration in 9 sets. HDR combination. Pixinsight May 2017
  8. Barred Spiral Galaxy NGC 6744 in Pavo NGC 6744 is a Milky Way like barred spiral galaxy in the constellation Pavo. Visible only from lower latitudes, the light we see now left this galaxy around 30 million years ago. Details: Spiral Galaxy NGC 6744 in Pavo. Skywatcher Quattro 10" f4 Newtonian telescope. Skywatcher AZ Eq6 GT Mount. Orion 80mm f5 guide scope and auto guider - PHD2. Baader MPCC Mark 3 Coma Corrector, no filter. Nikon D5300 (unmodified). Field of view (deg) ~ 1.35 x 0.90. ISO800, 14bit NEF, Long Exp. NR on. 44 x 120sec 4th Sept 2016 Processed in PixInsight and finished off in Photoshop. Links: https://500px.com/MikeODay http://photo.net/photos/MikeODay
  9. The Silver Coin Galaxy ( NGC 253 ) in the Sculptor constellation - updated. 24th March 2017: New version that was reprocessed ( again ) to improve colour balance ... original version below ( colours are a little too yellow ) ( click on image to see full size ) The Silver Coin Galaxy ( NGC 253 ) in the Sculptor constellation ( aka the Silver Dollar or Sculptor Galaxy ). Caroline Herschel in 1783 was the first to recordthis bright ‘nebula’ in an area of the southern sky that Nicolas de Lacaille had called the “Apparatus Sculptoris” or “the sculptor’s studio”. Whilst relatively close to us compared to the billions of far more distant galaxies in the Universe, the great size of the “Sculptor Galaxy” and the huge distances involved are still hard to comprehend. To put this into some perspective, the light that is just now reaching one edge of the great disc left the opposite edge when the Earth was in the grip of last great Ice Age 70,000 years ago and the light we now see has been travelling towards us for over 11 million years. Details: NGC 253 - "Silver Coin" or "Sculptor" galaxy. RA 00 48 23, DEC -25 11 52. Skywatcher Quattro 10" f4 Newtonian telescope. Skywatcher AZ Eq6 GT Mount. Orion Short Tube 80mm guide scope & auto guider - PHD2. Baader MPCC Mark 3 Coma Corrector & no filter. Nikon D5300 (unmodified). Field of view (deg) ~ 1.35 x 0.90. 20 x 180 sec ISO 800, long exp noise reduction on. Pixinsight & Photoshop. 4th November 2016 updated version 17 March 2017
  10. The Lagoon Nebula ( Messier 8, NGC 6523 ) in the constellation Sagittarious. ( click on image to see larger) The Laboon Nebula ( M8 ) is visible to the naked eye under dark skies from most latitudes except the far north. Seemingly covering an area about three times that of the full Moon, M8 actually covers an area somewhat greater than 110 light years and is around 4300 light years from Earth in the Sagittarius-Carina spiral arm of the Milkyway galaxy. ...... The frames for this image where taken back when I was very new to astrophotography and I was experimenting with camera settings. On this occasion I wanted to see if JPEG images might be easier to process - I was disappointed with the results. Now that I have a bit more knowledge and skill at processing I decided to have another attempt at trying to process the set because I liked the way the JPEG files had retained colour in the stars. I am reasonably pleased with the result; the faint detail in the nebula is not there but I quite like the colours in the centre and in the stars. Details: Messier 8, NGC 6523 - Lagoon Nebula Skywatcher Quattro 10" f4 Newtonian telescope. Skywatcher AZ Eq6 GT Mount.Orion auto guider - PHD2. Baader MPCC Mark 3 Coma Corrector. Nikon D300 (unmodified). 80 x 30 sec ISO 1600 (JPEG) - 31 Aug 14. PixInsight and Photoshop. processed 13 August 2016 Links: https://500px.com/MikeODay http://photo.net/photos/MikeODay
  11. I need some help, recently got a Canon 1200D and got some shots of the moon not great quality but also not the best conditions to take them so I thought everything was fine, today finally Jupiter and Mars decided to come out and play for 20 - 30 mins, like an excited school child I quickly got my scope and camera and went out to try get some images only to find no matter what settings i used when i used the camera i saw nothing but black in the LCD and in the viewfinder. does anybody have any suggestions of the settings I need for the 1200D to be able to see/image stars and planets with the 1200D, I tried with no barlow and a 2x cheapo that came with my scope and neither showed anything whatsoever I am assuming it is to do with iso but I am a complete newbie when it comes to DSLR cameras so any and all help greatly appreciated thanks in advance everyone
  12. Carina Nebula with the bright unstable star Eta Carinae in the centre of the image. edit ( 27 March ): Tweak to shadow levels to bring out more detail and also a slight reduction in the brightness of the highlights. A much larger version ( 4562 x 3072 6062 x 4082) is available on my Flickr page. previous version: Carinae Nebula ( NGC 3372 ) ( please click / tap on image to see larger and sharper ) From Wikipedia ... "Eta Carinae is a highly luminous hypergiant star. Estimates of its mass range from 100 to 150 times the mass of the Sun, and its luminosity is about four million times that of the Sun." This HDR image is constructed from 12 sets of exposures ranging from 1/8 sec ( to capture the bright centre of Eta Carinae ) through to 240 seconds. Total exposure time around 13 hours 17-19 March 2018 Image details: Objects in image: Hypergiant, Eta Carinae ( HD 93308 ) in the centre of the Homunculus Nebula Carina Nebula ( NGC 3372 ) Keyhole Nebula Open Star Clusters: - Trumpler 14, 15, 16 - Collinder 232 Field of view ..... 59' 18.2" x 39' 56.0" Image centre ...... RA: 10 45 01.762 Dec: -59 40 52.87 Orientation: North is up Telescope: Orion Optics CT12 Newtonian ( mirror 300mm, fl 1200mm, f4 ). Corrector: ASA 2" Coma Corrector Quattro 1.175x. Effective Focal Length / Aperture : 1470mm f4.7 Mount: Skywatcher EQ8 Guiding: TSOAG9 Off-Axis-Guider, Starlight Xpress Lodestar X2, PHD2 Camera: Nikon D5300 (unmodified) (sensor 23.5 x 15.6mm, 6016x4016 3.9um pixels) Location: Blue Mountains, Australia Moderate light pollution ( pale green zone on darksitefinder.com map ) Capture ( 17, 18 & 19 March 2018 ): 12 sets of sub-images with exposure duration for each set doubling ( 1/8s to 240s ) all at ISO250. ( 181 x 240sec + 10 to 20 each for the other durations ) Processing: Calibration: master bias, master flat and master dark Integration in 12 sets HDR combination Pixinsight March 2018
  13. Update: 3rd June Re-processed to remove slight magenta tint caused by the non-uniform removal of light pollution by the DBE process ( it was being fooled by the very bright image centre ). The globular star cluster Omega Centauri ( NGC 5139 ) in Centaurus ( please click / tap on image to see larger and sharper ) A full size image can be found here. original below ..... A newly captured ( May 2018 ) image of the great southern globular star cluster, Omega Centauri ( NGC 5139 ) Omega Centauri ( NGC 5139 ) in Centaurus - ( please click / tap image to see larger and sharper ) A full size ( ~ 6000 x 4000 ) image can be found here ....... This image is an attempt to look deeply into the mighty Omega Centauri star cluster and, by using HDR techniques, record as many of its faint members as possible whilst capturing and bringing out the colours of the stars, including in the core. Image details: Resolution ........ 0.586 arcsec/px ( full size image ) Rotation .......... 0.00 deg ( up is North ) Focal ............. 1375.99 mm Pixel size ........ 3.91 um Field of view ..... 58' 20.9" x 38' 55.1" Image center ...... RA: 13 26 45.065 Dec: -47 28 27.26 Telescope: Orion Optics CT12 Newtonian ( mirror 300mm, fl 1200mm, f4 ). Corrector: ASA 2" Coma Corrector Quattro 1.175x. Effective Focal Length / Aperture : 1470mm f4.7 Mount: Skywatcher Eq8 Guiding: TSOAG9 Off-Axis-Guider, Starlight Xpress Lodestar X2, PHD2 Camera: Nikon D5300 (unmodified) (sensor 23.5 x 15.6mm, 6016x4016 3.9um pixels)\ Location: Blue Mountains, Australia Moderate light pollution ( pale green zone on darksitefinder.com map ) Capture ( May 2018 ) 8 sets of sub-images with exposure duration for each set doubling ( 2s to 240s ) all at ISO 250. Processing: Calibration: master bias, master flat and master dark Integration in 8 sets HDR combination Pixinsight May 2018
  14. The ABC in Australia has just published their 2018 "Sky Tour" presentation in support of their Stargazing Live event this week ( http://www.abc.net.au/tv/programs/stargazing-live/ ). The presentation was produced by Genelle Weule and can be found at http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-05-21/stargazing-live-tour-great-southern-sky/9775660. It includes a narrated presentation by Prof. Fred Watson and includes four of my photos
  15. From the album: Mike's Images

    Blue Moon - 31st July 2015 Skywatcher Quattro 10" f4 Newtonian ("full moon" dust cap in place). Skywatcher AZ Eq6 GT Mount Orion 80mm f5 guide scope and auto guider - PHD2. Baader MPCC Mark 3 Coma Corrector, UHC-S 'nebula' filter. Nikon D5300 (unmodified). ISO200, 14bit NEF, Long Exp. NR off. 487 sub exposures @ 1/50th Subs taken over 45min period covering Full Moon @ 10:42 UT (8.42pm local time). Processed using Registax and Photoshop

    © Copyright Mike O'Day 2015 - all rights reserved

  16. From the album: Mike's Images

    Cat's Paw Nebula - NGC 6334 ( aka Bear Claw Nebula ) An emission nebula in Scorpius (near the scorpion's tail) RA 17h 25m 39.6s ; Dec -35deg 43' 48" . 7th August 2015. Skywatcher Quattro 10" f4 Newtonian. Skywatcher AZ Eq6 GT Mount Orion 80mm f5 guide scope and auto guider - PHD2. Baader MPCC Mark 3 Coma Corrector, UHC-S 'nebula' filter. Nikon D5300 (unmodified). Field of view (deg) ~ 1.35 x 0.90. ISO800, 14bit NEF, Long Exp. NR on. 28 x 200sec (starting at zenith) no moon, 3deg C, 70%RH, moderate LP. PixInsight

    © Copyright Mike O'Day 2015 - all rights reserved

  17. From the album: Mike's Images

    The Lagoon Nebula ( Messier 8, NGC 6523 ) in the constellation Sagittarius - by Mike O'Day ( https://500px.com/mikeoday ) The Laboon Nebula ( M8 ) is visible to the naked eye under dark skies from most latitudes except the far north. Seemingly covering an area about three times that of the full Moon, M8 actually covers an area somewhat greater than 110 light years and is around 4300 light years from Earth in the Sagittarius-Carina spiral arm of the Milkyway galaxy. Links: https://500px.com/MikeODay http://photo.net/photos/MikeODay Details: Messier 8, NGC 6523 - Lagoon Nebula. also contains: NGC 6526 NGC 6530 NGC 6533 IC 1271 IC 4678 7SGR 9SGR Skywatcher Quattro 10" f4 Newtonian telescope. Skywatcher AZ Eq6 GT Mount. Orion auto guider - PHD2. Baader MPCC Mark 3 Coma Corrector, UHC-S 'nebula' filter. Nikon D300 (unmodified) (14bit NEF). Field of view (deg) ~ 1.35 x 0.90. 20 x 120 sec ISO400. 26 x 30 sec ISO 1600. 23 x 240 sec ISO 200. PixInsight and Photoshop. 2 August 14 . re-processed 24 April 2016 to include the additional subs ( the first version only made use of the 23 x 240 sec ISO 200 subs ) and putting use the processing lessons I have learnt over the past year.

    © Copyright Mike O'Day 2016 - all rights reserved

  18. Also known as the Theta Carinae Cluster, The Southen Pleiades is a very bright open cluster in the Carina constellation. It was discovered by Abbe Lacaille during his visit to South Africa in 1752. Containing around 60 stars, IC 2602 shines with an overall magnitude of 1.9 and its brightest member is Theta Carinae with a visual magnitude of 2.7. This cluster of young blue stars is relatively close to us at "only" 479 light years. 5 May 2018 The Southern Pleiades ( IC 2602 ) in Carina ( please click / tap on image to see larger and sharper ) ......... Image details: Orientation: North is up Telescope: Orion Optics CT12 Newtonian ( mirror 300mm, fl 1200mm, f4 ). Corrector: ASA 2" Coma Corrector Quattro 1.175x. Effective Focal Length / Aperture : 1470mm f4.7 Mount: Skywatcher EQ8 Guiding: TSOAG9 Off-Axis-Guider, Starlight Xpress Lodestar X2, PHD2 Camera: Nikon D5300 (unmodified) (sensor 23.5 x 15.6mm, 6016x4016 3.91um pixels) Location: Blue Mountains, Australia Moderate light pollution ( pale green zone on darksitefinder.com map ) Capture ( 5 May 2018 ): 14 sets of sub-images with exposure duration for each set doubling ( 1/30th sec to 240 sec ) all at ISO250. ( 22 x 240sec + at least 10 each forthe other durations ) Processing: Calibration: master bias, master flat and master dark Integration in 14 sets HDR combination Pixinsight May 2018
  19. The Jewel Box ( NGC 4755 ) is an open cluster of mostly hot young blue-white stars that appears to the unaided eye as a bright 4th magnitude star close to the Southern Cross. Only visible from southern latitudes, the Jewel Box was first recorded by Nicolas Louis de Lacaille during his visit to South Africa in 1751 and was later described by Sir John Herschel as "a casket of variously coloured precious stones" - hence the name "Jewel Box". The Jewel Box open star cluster ( ngc 4755 ) in Curx ( please click / tap on image to see larger and sharper ) Please see here for image details.
  20. The Jewel Box ( NGC 4755 ) is an open cluster of mostly hot young blue-white stars that appears to the unaided eye as a bright 4th magnitude star close to the Southern Cross. Only visible from southern latitudes, the Jewel Box was first recorded by Nicolas Louis de Lacaille during his visit to South Africa in 1751 and was later described by Sir John Herschel as "a casket of variously coloured precious stones" - hence the name "Jewel Box". The Jewel Box Open Cluster ( ngc 4755 ) in the Crux constellation. ( please click / tap to see larger and sharper ) ........... Image details: Orientation: North is up Telescope: Orion Optics CT12 Newtonian ( mirror 300mm, fl 1200mm, f4 ). Corrector: ASA 2" Coma Corrector Quattro 1.175x. Effective Focal Length / Aperture : 1470mm f4.7 Mount: Skywatcher EQ8 Guiding: TSOAG9 Off-Axis-Guider, Starlight Xpress Lodestar X2, PHD2 Camera: Nikon D5300 (unmodified) (sensor 23.5 x 15.6mm, 6016x4016 3.91um pixels) image Plate Solver script version 5.0 =========== Resolution ........ 0.586 arcsec/px Rotation .......... 0.000 deg Focal ............. 1375.43 mm Pixel size ........ 3.91 um Field of view ..... 58' 49.3" x 39' 17.8" Image center ...... RA: 12 53 40.040 Dec: -60 21 02.81 ========== Location: Blue Mountains, Australia Moderate light pollution ( pale green zone on darksitefinder.com map ) Capture ( 5 May 2018 ): 11 sets of sub-images with exposure duration for each set doubling ( 1/8th sec to 120 sec ) all at ISO250. ( 10 x 120sec + at least 10 each forthe other durations ) Processing: Calibration: master bias, master flat and master dark Integration in 11sets HDR combination
  21. A deep look at Omega Centauri ( NGC 5139 ) edit: re-processed from the original exposures - April 2018 ........ previous version: Omega Centauri ( please click / tap on image to see larger and much sharper ) This image is an attempt to look deeply into the mighty Omega Centauri star cluster and, by using HDR techniques, record as many of its faint members as possible whilst capturing and bringing out the subtle colours of the stars, including in the core. ( re-processed from May 2017 subs - master dark added to workflow, new HDR / colour process workflow and stretched using ArcSinh ) Image details: Field of view ..... 58' 32.3" x 38' 55.6" Image center ...... RA: 13 26 50.290 Dec: -47 28 39.80 Orientation: East is up, North is to the right Telescope: Orion Optics CT12 Newtonian ( mirror 300mm, fl 1200mm, f4 ). Corrector: ASA 2" Coma Corrector Quattro 1.175x. Effective Focal Length / Aperture : 1470mm f4.7 Mount: Skywatcher AZ Eq6 GT Guiding: TSOAG9 Off-Axis-Guider, Starlight Xpress Lodestar X2, PHD2 Camera: Nikon D5300 (unmodified) (sensor 23.5 x 15.6mm, 6016x4016 3.9um pixels) Location: Blue Mountains, Australia Moderate light pollution ( pale green zone on darksitefinder.com map ) Capture ( May 2017 ): 9 sets of sub-images with exposure duration for each set doubling ( 1s to 240s ) all at ISO800. Processing: Calibration: master bias, master flat and master dark Integration in 9 sets HDR combination ArcSinh stretch Pixinsight March 2018 Links: 500px.com/MikeODay photo.net/photos/MikeODay www.flickr.com/photos/mike-oday
  22. “The Blue Bunny Nebula” .......... Edit: 27 Jan 2018 - updated again to try to draw more faint nebulosity out of the background; ( NGC 2359 - Thor’s Helmet ) ( please click / tap on image to see larger and without compression artefacts ( and double click on that image if you what to see it as I posted it ! ) ) ......... Edit: 24 Jan 2018 - stars a little brighter and tighter with no change to the rest of the image ( NGC 2359 - Thor’s Helmet ) ( please click / tap on image to see larger and without compression artefacts ( and double click on that image if you what to see it as I posted it ! ) ) ................. original: Thor's Helmet ( NGC 2359 ) in the constellation Canis Major Thor’s Helmet ( Duck Nebula, NGC 2359 ) ( please click / tap on image to see larger ) This HDR image shows the bright nebula Thor’s Helmet in a sea of colourful stars against a background of red from dust and HA emissions. The stars in this image range from the brightest ( bottom right, HD 56501 ) at magnitude +7.7 to around +20 or more. HDR capture and processing allows all of the stars to be portrayed in colour without any burnt-out highlights. The colours of the stars and nebula are as close as I can get them to their "true colours" by using a "daylight colour balance" and allowing for the extinction of blue-green due to atmospheric absorption/scattering ( mean altitude during capture ~ 60deg ). The blue star in the centre of the bubble of expanding stellar material is HD 56925 ( WR7 ) - a massive, unstable and short-lived Wolf-Rayet star that one day will detonate in a supernova. Image details: NGC 2359 Thor’s Helmet / Duck Nebula: Magnitude +11.5, RA (2000.0) 7h 15m 37s, Dec -13deg 12' 8", approx. 1800 light years away HD 56925 / Wolf-Rayet 7 ( WR7 ) ( blue 11.5 mag star at centre of “bubble” ) Haffner 6 ( open ster cluster centre left of image ) Plate Solution: Resolution ........ 1.318 arcsec/px Rotation .......... 0.00 deg ( North is up ) Focal ............. 1398.41 mm Field of view ..... 57' 40.8" x 38' 29.0" Image center ...... RA: 07 18 36.509 Dec: -13 11 53.38 Telescope: Orion Optics CT12 Newtonian ( mirror 300mm, fl 1200mm, f4 ). Corrector: ASA 2" Coma Corrector Quattro 1.175x. Effective Focal Length / Aperture : 1410mm f4.7 Mount: Skywatcher EQ8 Guiding: TSOAG9 Off-Axis-Guider, Starlight Xpress Lodestar X2, PHD2 Camera: Nikon D5300 (unmodified) (sensor 23.5 x 15.6mm, 6016x4016 3.9um pixels) Location: Blue Mountains, Australia Moderate light pollution ( pale green zone on darksitefinder.com map ) Capture ( 18 & 19 Jan 2018 ) 9 sets of sub-images with exposure duration for each set doubling ( 1s to 240s ) all at ISO 250. 116 x 240s + 5 each @ 1s to 120s Processing ( Pixinsight - 20 Jan 18 ) Calibration: master bias, master dark and master flat Integration in 9 sets HDR combination arcSinH stretch
  23. The Fighting Dragons of Ara ( NGC 6188 ) ( please click / tap on image to see larger ) The Fighting Dragons of Ara ( NGC 6188 ) Bright Nebula NGC 6188 and open cluster NGC 6193 are embedded 4,300 light years away in the Sagittarius arm of our Milky Way galaxy and can be seen with the naked eye south of Scorpius in the constellation of Ara. With powerful stellar winds and energetic ultra-violet radiation, massive stars sculpt the interstellar gas and dust of the nebula into wonderful shapes and cause the interstellar gas to brightly fluoresce. Closer to the hot young stars of the cluster, bright blue “sunlight” reflects off the clouds of gas and dust to produce the blue reflection nebulae seenin the image. Magnitude +5.19, RA 16h 41m 42s, Dec -48deg 48' 46". Approx. 3800 light years away. Image details: This is an HDR image constructed from exposures ranging from 2 seconds to 240 seconds in length. The aim was to capture the faint stars and details in the nebula whilst at the same time maintaining colour in the bright stars without clipping the highlights. Plate Solution: Resolution ........ 1.336 arcsec/px Rotation .......... 90.002 deg ( North is to the right ) Focal ............. 1475.57 mm Pixel size ........ 9.56 um Field of view ..... 58' 28.5" x 39' 0.8" Image center ...... RA: 16 40 09.903 Dec: -48 41 27.00 Telescope: Orion Optics CT12 Newtonian ( mirror 300mm, fl 1200mm, f4 ). Corrector: ASA 2" Coma Corrector Quattro 1.175x. Effective Focal Length / Aperture : 1410mm f4.7. Mount: Skywatcher AZ Eq6 GT. Guiding: TSOAG9 Off-Axis-Guider, Starlight Xpress Lodestar X2, PHD2 . Camera: Nikon D5300 (unmodified) (sensor 23.5 x 15.6mm, 6016x4016 3.9um pixels). Location: Blue Mountains, Australia Moderate light pollution ( pale green zone on darksitefinder.com map ). Capture ( 24 June 2017 ). 8 sets of sub-images with exposure duration for each set doubling ( 2s to 240s ) all at ISO800. 34 x 240s + 10 each @ 2s to 120s. Processing ( Pixinsight - 19 Aug 2017, 13 Jan 2018 ). Calibration: master bias, master flat and no darks. Integration in 8 sets. HDR combination. ......... This is a reprocessed version using the data I captured earlier in the year...
  24. Hello stargazers! I am a 14.5 year old boy currently exploring the hobby of astronomy! My first Telescope is the Celestron Firstscope! This post is going to contain mostly everything i do from now on! i will occasionally post some tips and tricks as well as some images(rarely) I am soon getting a 8" dob , but that doesnt mean i wont be using the Celestron firstscope. Hopefully, one day i can look back to this and remember the beggining of my journey as i am intrested in studying astrophysics/ astronomy in university . And if not, i will continue exploring this hobby. So Lets start! Astro Journal #0 So this is almost everything i ve done so far, i have had the telescope for almost 3 weeks now and have used it quite oftenly. The first time i used it was in relatively okay skies,i had no idea what focusing was and just looked at unfocused stars for that day.I cant believe i had such ignorance! After i tried finding why the stars were like that, i finally unsterstood the purpose of the focuser! The next day i used it on the cresent Moon, it took me 10 minutes to find with the 20MM eyepiece supplied with the telescope XD. ( even though it was righ infront of me) It was quite nice! I was able to see some craters on it and focusing was pretty good. Then i turned to the 4mm eyepiece.(75x) mag it almost covered the entire fov. For some reason the 4mm eyepiece isnt able to focus very well in general. And it was kind of blurry , but still enjoyable! Here are some pictures i took with it: i continued viewing the moon for a couple of days, then i decided to do some nebula viewing. I was despirately trying to find orion,as the orion nebula was and Is my FAVOURITE Nebula, it took me some time to realise that what i thought was pegasus was actually orion 's belt and sword ?. The night i first observed orion was a full moon night. It took me around 3 minutes to find the orion nebula in the scope. I just happened to notice it because of accidental adverted vision. I ve heard of adverted vision , but hadnt had the chance to use it , until then. I had reasonably high expectations for a 3" reflector, and wasnt sure if i was looking at it or not. It looked like a faint colourless fuzzy blob. After reporting what i saw to the forum they assured me that i had indeed saw the orion nebula.( this all from quite light polluted skies!) Even though i had high expectations i was pretty satisfied with my views. 3 days after, the moon wasnt very visible so i went out to observe. What i saw amazed me. It was considerably brigher than before ,using adverted vision. The idea of looking at the nebula itself in combination with the even better view, astounded me.(in the same skies) I loved it!!!!!!!!!!! After some though i was very suprised that such a cheap instrument(got it for 60euros , but you can usually get it for around 50) can show you that much! Yesterday i woke up to see the moon venus and jupiter( I wasnt able to view the jupiter-venus conjuction because of clouds, same with the Super Blood Moon. Guess i gotta wait another 19 years ?). I was able to find venus before i left for school. it was okay with the 20mm eyepiece. I just didnt have the time to view it in the 4mm( i know the timing was very unfortunate , didnt want to miss the buss) Astro Journal #1 So here we are! Today! I used the telescope in my backyard(they skies are okay! i can make out around 50 stars in my fov (around 180 degrees) I took a view of the orion nebula! You know what they say! You ll never see less than you saw yesterday!(except if the seeing conditions are worse ?) I was able to see quite more using adverted vision than the first time! { For those who dont know, adverted vision is when you dont look directly at the object you are observing ,as the areas in your eyes that focus on something arent as light sensitive as the areas who do not. So this way you achieve better brightness and clarity } Then i took a look at Taurus! i noticed some stars and then headed right for The Pleiades! The Pleiades , filled the entire Fov of my telescope . It had a pretty clear view. I did not however notice any colour or blue tint surrounding the stars. I wasnt expecting much to begin with so that was okay! I took some pictures of the Orion nebula! This pictures indicate what you will see with bad seeing full moon some light pollution and no adverted vision. However, the results with clear skies, adverted vision and no moon will be WAY better , i Promise. Dark skies will help you the most when looking at Deep Sky Objects Also FOR BETTER VIEWS Dont forget to DARK ADDAPT: DARK ADDAPTATION ALLOWS THE EYE TO SEE MUCH FAINTER LIGHT . TO ACHIEVE DARK ADDAPTATION TRY AND SPENDING AROUND 30-40 MINUTES IN DARKNESS ( AND NO CLOSING YOUR EYES FOR 40 MINUTES WONT WORK) And be careful. Even a look at your cell phone will take the dark addaptation effect away. So if you want to see somehow, use red flash torches,as red is the lowest wavelenght in power. The views you will get on the orion nebula will be amazing! Guranteed!
  25. The Great Nebula in Orion ( Messier 42, NGC 1976 ) ( tap on image to see larger ) Scrapbook page ... Details: The Great Orion Nebula (Messier 42, Messier 43, NGC 1976 ) in the Orion Constellation RA 5 36 15, DEC -5 26 31 ( 2016.9 ) Skywatcher Quattro 10" f4 Newtonian telescope Skywatcher AZ Eq6 GT Mount Orion Short Tube 80mm guide scope & auto guider - PHD2 Baader MPCC Mark 3 Coma Corrector & no filter Nikon D5300 (unmodified) Field of view (deg) < ~ 1.35 x 0.90 long exp noise reduction on 45 x 120 sec ISO 400, 15 x 60 sec ISO 100, +various short exposures 3 to 15 sec to extend dynamic range for bright stars Pixinsight & Photoshop 28th November 2016
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