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Found 161 results

  1. A lucky 4 day stretch of clear cold skies Welford Observatory springs into life for one of the only times this season The forecast in the run up to the 9th of February was promising clear skies but frankly I didn't pay much attention to it as the weather has been so changeable this winter. The forecast was right though and I managed to not only get many hours in on the 9th but also the 12th, 13th and 15th. The good weather was not the only surprise though. I haven't imaged the Great Nebula in Orion since 2012 as I remembered it being very difficult to track from my observatory as it moved along the very edge of the southern wall at the limit of my pier/scope configuration. Also, in 2012 I shot it with a one shot colour camera making life very easy. If I were to image it again I'd be using my ASI1600MM with the need to capture luminance, red, green and blue channels - and if I was very ambitious - H-alpha as well. It turned out I was feeling very ambitious. And it worked. I think I've captured my best astrophoto to date. Also, I pushed my processing skills (limited as they are) to include the H-alpha in both the luminance and red channels. I'm finding Pixinsight so much easier to use than other programs I've tried, mostly because the standard approach to most of the processes takes the guess work out of some of the more creative damage I can do to the image. :-) Also, the observatory was ticking over perfectly with very few errors made by me in re-configuring it each night for the next round of imaging. And so here are the results of one of my most enjoyable series of evenings in the observatory. Details Object name The Great Nebula in Orion Object ID M42 Date(s) 9, 12, 13 and 15 February, 2018 Telescope Teleskop Service 65mm Camera ASI1600MM Luminance 60*1min = 60min Red 25*2min = 50min Green 25*2min = 50min Blue 24*2min = 48min Ha 19*5min = 95min Oiii 0 Sii 0 Total time 5.05hrs Frames 0 Processing PixInsight / Bias, Flats, Darks / Ha to Lum / Ha to red channel / LHaRHaGB / Notes I waited this entire winter for an opportunity to get back into the observatory to do some imaging. The weather and my schedule have been appalling. I guess I can really stop saying that now as it’s always the case…. I didn’t expect to image this object – the last time I did was the 14th of January, 2012. It’s very low to the top of my observatory wall and imaging it always seems unlikely. But on this occasion, I persevered over the few clear nights we had and managed to capture 5 hours of data in H-alpha, red, green and blue channels. This is the most data I’ve captured on an object and it paid off. I’ve processed this image combing H-alpha with both the luminance and red channels – then recombining them all for the finished shot. I may try re-processing in different combinations but this certainly seems to have worked ok. NGC 2244 Details Object name The Rosette Nebula Object ID NGC 2244 Date(s) 9, 13 February, 2018 Telescope 65mm Camera ASI1600MM Luminance 0 Red 0 Green 0 Blue 0 Ha 15*5 min = 75 min Oiii 4*5 min = 20 min Sii 8*5 min = 40 min Total time 2.25 hr Frames 0 Processing PixInsight / Bias, Flats, Darks / Notes Not enough data to make this a good image – but it’s a start and all the weather would allow for this season. M44 Details Object name The Beehive Cluster Object ID M44 Date(s) 9 February, 2018 Telescope Teleskop Service 65mm astrograph Camera ASI1600MM Luminance 0 Red 25 x 2 min = 50 min Green 19 x 2 min = 38 min Blue 19 x 2 min = 38 min Ha 0 Oiii 0 Sii 0 Total time 2.1 hrs Frames 0 Processing PixInsight / Bias, Flats, Darks Notes The second of the objects I imaged during this session. The Beehive cluster is the first object I (accidently) observed while trying to find Saturn out on the downs one night back in 2002 when I took up this hobby again. I remember being absolutely stunned by the sight of all these stars blazing in such a small patch of sky. The scope I was using had been bought from a work colleague for £50 (I later found out that it was considered ..”toy grade” LOL!) but it was good enough to provide decent images of brighter objects such as this one. I hope the rest of you were able to take advantage of what was a great clear spell this winter :-) David
  2. Yet another M42...

    Not that anyone could get fed up with this object... Date: 01 January 2018 Equipment: SXV-H9, Vixen 114mm f5.3 ED refractor, guiding with Lodestar X2/PHD Subframes: 30 x 300s, 100s & 20s H-alpha, 20 x 20s & 100s RGB 2x2 binned, 20 flats for each channel, no darks (hot pixel removal in Astroart instead). Images were acquired and pre-processed (aligned, stacked, denoised) in AstroArt4, then composited in Paint Shop Pro7. The Orion Nebula presents quite a challenge to depict because of the wide brightness range of its key features. Many early CCD images of this object as shown on the web "burn out" the "trapezium" region of the four central stars in attempting to show the outlying nebulosity. I use the "layers" function in PaintShop Pro, stacking the longest exposures on top of shorter ones, and then carefully use the "eraser" tool to remove overexposed areas, leaving the underlying correctly exposed regions to show through. This has to be done with care to avoid introducing obvious processing artefacts. Whilst the latest image processing programs such as Pixinsight have "dynamic range adjustment" features that can automatically produce an even distribution of brightness, some of the resultant images can seem rather strange to my eyes. Programmes like that are way beyond both my budget and my understanding! LRGB combination (using the H-alpha stack as the luminance channel) went well in both Astroart and PaintShop Pro. The PSP version was a lot greener than the Astroart one (though you can “weight” colours to compensate for CCD sensitivity at different wavelengths), but I preferred the PSP output as it hinted at the greenish hue of the nebula that is so clearly discernible though the eyepiece. All of the brighter features seen in the above image show clearly through my VC200L and a 25mm eyepiece. The central trapezium of four stars shines brilliantly against a bright silvery background, which fades into the convoluted greenish wings of the surrounding nebula. The dark channel between the main portion of the nebula and the upper candle-flame is clearly seen. I strove to retain all of these key features in the image above, as well as highlight the extended nebulosity that the eye cannot see. Any comments, criticisms or suggestions gratefully received...
  3. M42 and M43: my first target using the new Orion SteadPix EZ. Once all set up, Orion's SteadyPix EZ works really well (though it can be tough swapping lenses on a dark night). This pic is actually just one shot made into three layers: 1 layer for is the entire picture, one layer with the main body of M42 cut out, and one layer consisting only of M43. I stacked and processed them on the iPhone with the Photoshop Mix application. I found that playing with the stacking transition settings (Blend) yielded the best results when using the following options: Normal, Brighten or Punch. Cutting away portions of the various layers allowed me to expose just the portion I wanted, so the dimmer nebulousness came through without destroying the rest of the photo. For me iPhone afocal AP is the way to go... until I can trick my wife into allowing me to buy a an EQ mount, guide scope, imaging OTA, CCD sensors, etc... 13 January 2018 Memphis, Tennessee, USA Sky Watcher 10" Dob iPhone 8 Plus Sky: NELM 4.5-5 Bortle Class 7-8 Edit: Used a cheap bluetooth shutter remote to actually take the photo
  4. One night after complaining on the forums that observing opportunities are so few and far between in the UK during winter and I look up to see clear skies and a blindingly bright moon. My preferred targets are DSOs but having recently bought a Baader Neutral Density Moon filter (0.9) I thought it might be a great time to try it out. I'd also recently bought that thingy that lets you attach your phone to the eyepiece and so I took the picture below and I'm fairly pleased with the result. I thought that the blue fringe of doom was exclusively a refractor thing which is why I was surprised to see the blue fringe in the picture. I have owned my Skyliner 200p Dobsonian for around ten years and so it might surprise you to know that I have never managed to see the Orion Nebula through my telescope, or any other telescope for that matter; so last night, with the moon 96% of full I thought I'd give it a try. Less than ideal conditions you might say but I have to tell you, it was still spectacular! I was able to see a surprising amount of detail and I also worked out (at long last) which time of year and what time of night I can see the whole of Orion from my back garden (mid to late January onwards at around 11pm) rather than the utterly light polluted front garden. I cannot wait for a moonless (clear) night so I can sketch the nebula! I did also discover that my collimation efforts were less than stellar (pun intended) and so, back to the drawing board. Overall it was a fantastic night's observing! I was able to spend a good while not just looking at the nebula but observing it and teasing out as much detail as I could using the usual old tricks. The night was clear but all my back garden observing is done over the neighbours' houses, so heat shimmer and therefore focus was an issue. I actually used my Baader Neodymium filter to reduce the effects of light pollution and increase contrast which it did very well. I'm seriously itching for a clear moonless night! By the way if anyone can recommend a good observing chair my back would be very grateful
  5. I had a few hours free last night, which remarkably coincided with clear skies, so I had a nice little session from around 8 until 10.30 ish. The moon was an obvious target, and I spent a decent amount of time panning along the terminator enjoying the views. I was rather obsessed with trying to spot craterlets on Plato, although I'm not sure whether last night was the best phase or not. I managed a grand total of two with a suspected third, not amazing! The seeing varied from fairly decent to fairly wobbly depending upon whether it was over the neighbours garden or house! Next up M42 obviously. Even without a filter the nebulosity showed well, clear tints of green to my eye. Switching from 24mm Pan to Nag Zoom showed the Trap at between x123 and x246. Whilst the E star was fairly clear at times, F was nothing more than a 'might be' every now and then. I know the scope is capable of it, the seeing just isn't a lot of the time. I tried the binoviewers out too, to see whether they made any improvement on the Trap and Moon. The Trap was a no, I think E was slightly harder with the binos, and the Moon was an unfair comparison because it had gone over the neighbours house. Will repeat the exercise under better conditions. I then made a start at a few Carbon stars, having added a number of lists to SkySafari. I find these lists very handy as the basis for an observing session and highly recommend having a look at them if you haven't already. Sorted by transit time I picked off a few without too much slewing. Hind's Crimson star kind of stole the show, such a lovely deep red colour. In comparison the others I viewed on the list seemed far more orange but I'll persevere and see how I get on. WZ Cassiopeiae appeared on both the Carbon stars and the coloured doubles list, a quite wide pair at 57.7", one orange and the other white. Similar brightness at mag 7.1 and 8.3 BL Orionis and V613 Monocerotis were the other two I got, fairly unremarkable I found but still rewarding identifying them in the star fields. Sigma Cass and Iota Cass were the last two doubles that I picked. Sigma was, I think, a new one for me. Nice tight (3.1") uneven double, mags 4.88 and 7.24. To my eye they looked similar in colour, white. Iota is a lovely one as we all know. Not something I view very often, must try harder, but at x123 with the Nag Zoom the three components were beautifully resolved. I'm sure I could have used lower mag but didn't bother changing eye pieces. Higher mag increased the split obviously, but somehow I preferred the tight star shapes and split at the 6mm setting. So, nice little session with the Tak/AZGTi setup which is my usual these days. Lightweight so easy to setup and alignment quick and easy. Grubby little iPhone shot attached, plus some detail of the SS lists I have loaded.
  6. Hello all, I'm starting a new thread for this since the hydrogen data is rather old and it has been reprocessed since I posted a while ago. Now I finished the acquisition of O[III] too. Or sort of, I planned more, but clear nights were so rare that I decided to process what I had. The image was done in "3 pass" data over the area. That means that I acquired 3 sets of images covering the same area and combined in the end. First 2 in hydrogen, the last in oxygen. First set consisted of 3 panels in portrait mode for the top area and then I wanted to extend them to the bottom so I shot another 2 panels in landscape mode. I knew that I could get a higher SNR so I shot 4 more panels in landscape mode. Each panel consists of 30-31 subs, each sub 300s. Then I started the acquisition of O[III] which needed light pollution and moonlight conditions than the Ha required. Top panels contain 30 subs, but the bottom ones, only 20-22. Each 300s. Luckily there's not much oxygen in that area so I could get away with less subs. I also took some 10s-30s frames for M42's core. For the framing, I created a quick mosaic of the same area. For the final alignment I shot an image somewhere close to the center of this area. I can't remember if the initial register was done in APP or Registar - for the first pass, but for the next ones it was done in Registar. I removed the gradient manually in each stack with APP and then I created the mosaics for each pass same with APP. The 2 Ha passes I then blended manually 50%-50%. For the processing, I tried to stretch both Ha and O[III] to the same levels and I combined them manually in some 60-40/70-30 ratio for a layer which I used as lum. The colours were Ha - reddish, O[III] - cyan-blue. I spent a lot of time trying to control the big stars, the O[III] filter has poor coatings and, together with the ASI1600s non AR coated sensor, I had much brighter reflections than with the Ha filter. And I tried to raise the oxygen levels selectively around the flame and NGC2023, but the flame is really dim in O[III]. Don't know what other details in the story I forgot, this project drained me a lot of energy. Camera was ASI1600MMC, cooled to -15C for the first pass and to -25C for the ones following. Gain 139. Canon 300 F4 L IS lens with a lot of aberrations towards the edges. AZ-EQ5 mount guided with a 200mm lens and an ASI120MM, with varying seeing. 1.5-2.5" RMS guiding error usually. APT for capture, PHD2 for guiding, Registar for each night initial alignment. DSS, APP, Registar, StarTools, GIMP for processing. I started shooting early in October and I wanted much more, but Orion already becomes less and less visible from where I image and hides beyond the house. Ah, yes, I image from a yellow-pink light polluted area. Thanks for reading, thanks for looking! Comments and suggestions are appreciated. Links to original image and acquisition details: https://drive.google.com/open?id=17tr8lqagQAJg8maojtHZPbM-f67gSBTv https://drive.google.com/open?id=12gjGEgeR7FxR1Tow0e64JczeeUIqKojK https://www.astrobin.com/330284/ Alex
  7. It was freezing cold last night; far too cold for an extended observing session. However, with Orion in the perfect position over the dells, I decided to try a little AP. Canon EOS 1300D (unmodified) 18-55mm kit lens F3.5 30 seconds ISO 160
  8. First, I'd like to say that I'm in wet diapers as far as imaging goes, just making a few baby steps. Tonight was clear and not as freezing cold as has been recently, so I took the kit into the barnyard where I have a fairly decent sky. I just added Bob's Knobs to my Edge HD 8", and had done an indoor collimation; I wanted to fine tune it outside as one goal of observing tonight. Another goal was trying out my new WO GT81 on the Moon, I haven't had the opportunity to use it for lunar because of recent weather.....and no Moon. So, one of the last things tonight was to swing over to M42 after the Moon got too low to observe. I used the frac to observe wide-field for a while, then put the Edge on the mount; to check collimation I swung over to Castor, and clearly split it with a 25mm Plossl. Then I went to Capella, defocused so I could get the 'donut', and it was so perfect as I closed it down while focusing I left the collimation as it was. Skewing over to M42, I started with a 25mm Plossl in a 2" diagonal and worked my way up, ending with my 2" 2.5x Luminos barlow and a 13mm Ultima EP, giving me 385X. Visually, I could split 'E' and 'F' in the Trapezium, so I thought I'd see if I could get an image through the EP with my DSLR, since the Ultima is threaded for a T-ring. This is a single image, 2.5 seconds at ISO 6400. Less exposure did not bring out 'E' any better, and 'F' is showing as a bulge in its companion. More exposure hid both as the Trapezium stars were too bright.
  9. An unexpectedly short EAA session on the night of January 18 led to only one capture... it would have been longer but for the clouds, and I seem to have a problem with star shapes. This is from my Quattro 8", successfully used before, but with a new (to me) camera and imaging train. Here's a 20 second sub as captured on screen (Nebulosity) and then a post-processed image with 22 of them stacked (for a total of 7 minutes, 20 seconds) The problem, though, is with the star shapes: The image train is: Coma Corrector (previously used and absolutely fine) ZWO OAG (new for Christmas, but not in use yet, except as a spacer) Baader variable spacer Atik 460EX mono CCD cooled to -12C (this is 'Gina-cam', thanks @Gina!) Everything is threaded connections, I don't think it's tilt, and it doesn't look like a classic CC spacing issue. This is unguided, and certainly the PA wasn't perfect, but collimation was (I believe) good. The OAG prism was way out of the way from the long-side of the chip, so my hope is that this might be caused by the high wind that night? (Mount is an Avalon M-Uno.) Any suggestions/advice? I will, of course, be trying again in better conditions, if they ever arrive. Tony
  10. M42 in HOO

    Here's my first attempt at bi-colour HOO narrowband, using the OIII filter I got for Christmas Please do click through to Flickr and have a look at it with the magnifying glass, there's loads of detail in there. 23x600s Ha, 20x60s Ha, 10x600s OIII, 8x60s OIII, darks, flats and bias, equipment as per sig, Pixinsight. It was an absolute joy to process this, it was singing to me from the very first trial combination of stacks. I had lots of fun playing with colour balances (actually it's more like HOo, and then I let the red grow a bit, looks like a watermelon to me). Had fun with the HDR too. I've done some HaLRGB before, and I have the skies for it, but I'm finding HaLRGB to be quite frustrating - takes ages to process to get the balance right, and even then it seems to be a compromise between the detail of the Ha and the colours of the RGB, and all too often, it comes out like a big red smudge. I've got a Pacman in processing that might just end up left on the cutting room floor. It seems I've finally tamed my collimation and coma demons, but on this occasion, my guiding was surprisingly shocking. I normally get something like 0.45" rms error, but this time was as much as 2.5". We'd had near-gales the few days before I took this, and while it was calm at ground level on the nights I was capturing, I guess it was still hurtling around in the upper atmosphere - pretty twinkling stars, and a rather less pretty guide star bouncing around all over the place in PHD. I had to throw away nearly half of my OIII because the stars were too fat, as you can tell from the capture details above. Just for a laugh, here is my first attempt, taken 6 years ago with an unmodded DSLR - a shamefully small set of data (ahem, 13x10s !) and processed within an inch of its life (I think this was about the 4th reprocess), but not a bad attempt I suppose. Anyway, hope you enjoy, comments and cc welcome ! Cheers, Stuart
  11. Multiple DeepSky Objects

  12. M42

    Hi. Submitting my M42 for the challenge, suffice to say that no narrow band was captured or harmed in the creation of this image. Instead I wrung the LRBG to death! http://www.pbase.com/grahammeyer/image/166759195/original.jpg Telescope: William Optics FLT132 Guide Scope: FLT132 & QHY OAG Camera: QHY9 Mono @ -20c Filter Wheel: QHY Filters: QHY 36mm unmounted L R G B HA OIII SII Guide Camera: QHY5LII Mount: AZ-EQ6 Mount Control: EQASCOM Focusing: SharpSky Pro and Focusmax Capture Software: MaxIm DL 5 Calibration and Stacking Software: PixInsight Processing Software: PixInsight(calibration, stacking, integration, etc) and Photoshop(layer masking) L= 33X300sec, 10x120sec , R= 16x240sec, 10x120sec, 10x30sec , G= 20x240sec, 10x120sec, 10x30sec , B= 20x240sec, 10x120sec, 10x30sec Ha= x , SII= x , OIII= x . Binning: 1x1 Total Image Time: 484min (8.06hrs) Captured: 10.12.2017 - 23.12.2017 Light Box by Exfso
  13. Esprit testing on Orion

    Happy to see the stars again last night, though cirrus clouds were everywhere. With some luck I got some (short) time with lower cloud density and I pointed the scope towards the Orion. 32x30s usable longest subs, 15x10s for the core and I also used 14x20s taken on the 25th to remove the big halos caused by the brighter stars seen through clouds. I could not expose longer, I only had my DSLR and my EQ5 mount, no intervalometer. The second picture contains some narrowband data I had, which I added in a very small amount to the RGB image. Ha as red and O3 as G and B. This is taken through another lens and it is just an experiment. The scope seems to perform very well. I can't wait to see what I can get in proper conditions, but it seems that I have to wait a while for this. Clear skies! Alex
  14. Hello, I hope you are all having a good Christmas and will have a Happy New Year. This is my first official image from my shifted and rebuilt observatory that I am now sharing with my brother in a much darker location. To get to this point has taken nearly two years, so even though the image has some registration issues and camera artifacts, I am happy to be at this stage. It is also 3and 1/2 years since I really processed a full image. I started an M17 image which will have to be finished next year due to the bad weather we have had. Onwards and upwards! Anyway, I hope you find something to like about this image of M42. Large image and technical details can be found at https://secure2.pbase.com/grahammeyer/image/166759195/original.jpg Thanks for looking! Graham.
  15. M42 Orion Nebula

    King of the winter night sky -Orion NebulaAs the part of our galaxy lies around 1340 light years from us and is the closest region of massive star formation to Earth.Only 27 frames as the clouds were covering all sky as soon as I arrived.. Scope: Skywatcher EVOSTAR 80ED DS-ProMount: AZ EQ6-GT Camera: QHY168C Filter Optolong L-PRO MAX Luminosity Guiding camera: ZWO ASI120MC Guiding scope: SW 9x50 finderscope 27x300s exposure at -10°C (135min total) 2h 15min binning 1x1 20xdarks 30xbias 20x flats
  16. M42.jpg

    From the album David Newbury

    Orion Nebula M42 ATIK 4120EX OSC C11 with Hyperstar Mesu 200 mount 80 lights consisting of 0.1s upto 180s Processed in Pixinsight.
  17. Taken Saturday night, 25/26 Nov 17. 80 subs of 0.1.s, 1s, 10s x 20 each. 60s and 180s x 10 each. Flats/bias/darks x 10 each. Atik 4120EX OSC camera Celestron C11 with Hyperstar Mesu 200 mount.
  18. M42 unguided Ha

    So as this season's first image, I have started on the Orion nebula. I had guiding issues, but with my newly polar aligned observatory I could do 150sec exposures without issues. 1h 37min total. 6x 10 sec 18x 30sec 17x 60sec 28x 150sec I think it's a good start to continue on. I have darks and biases for it, but they where taken after I processed. I'll save them for when I get more data. Let me know what you think. It's been a long summer, so had to learn 'everything' again. At lest I have polaralignment within 5 arcsec in both axies this year
  19. Had a night out in a feild with a mate last night, we were aiming for a bit of polar alignment / guiding practice. It all went pear shaped very quickly ... He forgot the top half of his mount so we both played with my AVX. Pole master polar alignment went well, as did PHD2 with an Altair gpcam finder guider on a Zenithstar 71. Put the Nikon D5300 on and focused roughly with a Bahtinov, then started BYN (back yard Nikon) Would it connect ? No chance ! Tried various reboots etc. No joy. So We tried Steve's camera... Canon ! But we could swap T adaptor , yay ! But no, his was a T to M48 to screw straight on his Star 71. So I bunged my Nikon back on and pressed the shutter manually for about 20 30 second exposures @ 400 iso. All good fun though and we had a great laugh. Edit : tried connecting Nikon this morning and it worked straight away ... I laughed , kind of hysterically 😂
  20. It turns out I can not acquire more data until this challenge ends. I present you therefore what I have until now. It's a 5 panels mosaic in Hydrogen alpha. 3 panels in portrait mode, at the top. And 2 in landscape mode, at the bottom. Each panel is made by 30-31 subs of 300s and for the Orion nebula core I have a few 15s subs. All subs are taken with the ZWO ASI 1600 MMC, cooled to -15C, and 139gain. The lens is a Canon 300 F4 L with a lot of distortions caused by the IS element. Compared to the images I was taking on other targets until Orion rose enough, the focus was good since the beginning and remained ok during the nights. Mount: AZ-EQ5. Guiding with a 200mm lens. Software used: APT and PHD for acquisition; DSS, APP, Registar, StarTools and GIMP for processing. I plan to acquire 4 more Ha panels in landscape mode to cover the same area to increase the SNR and then to move to O3 and LRGB. A lot of work this winter. Link with wip: http://www.astrobin.com/317154/C/ Thanks and clear skies, Alex
  21. Hello all! I acquired yesterday the third hydrogen panel of this area. I might add 2 more below, in landscape. We shall see how the weather plays. 2.5h each panel in 300s subs at unity gain. And some 30s exposures for the core. Camera is ASI1600MMC on the Canon 300 F4 L lens, cooled to -15C. And first successful try with the Astro Pixel Processor, though, the stacks were made with DSS. I just purchased APP and I didn't restack them. I'm not sure if I should add more hydrogen data or move to oxygen and then LRGB. I still have time to decide until Feb-March. More details: http://www.astrobin.com/317154/ Comments welcomed. Clear skies, Alex
  22. M42

    Messier 42I know Orion has been done to death but atm it's one that's within my meagre reach. Was thinking of reshooting this at 200mm to get the slightly longer exposure times and maybe drop the ISO to stop the core blowing out so much? Obviously more captures, getting out of the city and waiting until it's higher would help Nikon D5300 360 image stack, 10 offsets, (oops on the darks) 300mm @ 1.6 seconds exposures ISO 5000 @ f / 5.6 Stacked in DSS, data stretched out In LightRoom and Photoshop. Lots of noise in this as it was very low down on the horizon and I forgot to add the darks, but still my best attempt yet. The core and several brighter stars are blown but I've sacrificed those for the sake of cloud detail
  23. 9+ hours of DSLR M42, reprocessed

    Hi there! I´ve had a break from astrophotography. I lost all lust for it during last winter after my father suddenly passed away. Really getting the lust for AP back now and while waiting for the dark nights to return I reprocessed my M42. This is one of the photos I will use for an upcoming exhibition I´m participating in. I really think this was in improvement compared to my latest version. Tighter, less fuzzy stars, better colours. 28*120 + 39*180 + 27*300 seconds of RGB 23*600 + 1*900 seconds of HA (12 nm filter) 5*10 + 12*6 seconds for the brightest area All in all 9+ hours of exposure. This is a tricky part of the sky since it never rises above 26 degrees above the horizon and I have some houses and minor LP in that direction. I processed the HA separately and blended it in at 10% opacity with the red channel and as a luminosity layer at 15% opacity. Pixinsight and Photoshop used. At first I wanted to push it further but I decided to keep it just a little bit more subtle. Canon EOS 1100D (modded) Canon EF 300/4L lens HEQ5 Pro Synscan Orion MMAG
  24. My wife Janie is very heavily into cross-stitch and produces beautiful work from photographs (normally dogs!) using patterns that I produce for her using special software. Her latest project is from one of my deep sky images and one of her favourite objects, the Orion Nebula. The 'resolution' is a pretty appalling 216 x 216 stitches but when hung on the wall and viewed from about four feet away, it will look like a photograph. As usual, I have produced a mock-up for her showing literally every stitch that will be sewn using 82 different silk colours! For the fun of it I will post up WIP images but here is the mock-up for starters (the image might need to be clicked on to show the stitches rather than just an interference pattern!):-
  25. M42 (again)

    There have been some great images of M42 on here recently, so I hesitated to post my first serious attempt (having made a reasonable stab with camera, 300mm lens and Vixen Polarie some time ago). After much playing with DSS and Digital Photo Professional I got this final image. I've tried to keep my kit relatively cheap (I live in Yorkshire) and simple (still prefer vinyl to CD). Obviously a lot to learn about focusing and exposure. Many thanks to all at SGL who posted encouragement and advice. Celestron 9.25 SCT, Advanced VX EQ mount, Baader crayford focuser, Celestron star diagonal + illuminated reticle eyepiece. Red dot finder + 9x50 RACI illuminated reticle finderscope (belt and braces!) Celestron focal reducer, Prime focus T adapter, eyepiece projection Celestron tele-extender with Altair 20mm wide view eyepiece. Canon EOS 550D DSLR (modified), Kolari Vision Hot Mirror colour correcting filter, moon and sky glow filter. Canon 18-55mm lens, Sigma 70-300mm lens Kendrick DigiFire8 dew controller, Kendrick dew strips, Dew shield, Bahtinov mask. A sense of wonder