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Found 14 results

  1. I just came in from a quick and cold viewing. As I was sweeping the sky east of Pollux and Castor, I came across a large open cluster that I estimated to be a bout 2 degrees across. I just looked up large open clusters near Gemini and found out I viewed the Beehive Cluster or M44. It's also known as Praesepe. In all my years of viewing DSOs with my scopes I never saw this. Possibly because it's so large that only about a quarter of it would have fit into my eyepiece FOV.
  2. rory

    couple of o/c's

    these are not great sketches by any stretch, but i was shivering and my current eyepiece set up isnt ideal for these open clusters as x50 is my lowest power at the moment.
  3. Visible for much of the night until around 4.15am, the closest approach is at around 2.15am when the 76% illuminated Moon will be 2 degrees 36" away from M44, the Beehive Cluster. Best seen in binoculars or a wide field scope.
  4. As it was clear for a spell tonight, but it was unlikely to stay clear long enough to get the telescope out and set up, I decided to go out with my binoculars to check out the star hop to M97 and M108 for some future imaging. I could just about make both of them out - though these were fainter than M51 and M1, which I could see without too much difficulty. I spent a little bit of time looking back towards Orion and I stumbled across a big bright open cluster which had me stunned. It filled the field of view very nicely indeed and had a bright beautiful collection of stars. Quite stunning. After coming in I checked out what it was in Stellarium and found it was M44 Praesepe, or the Beehive cluster. What a great object and quite a revelation. I'm really enjoying my bins as they provide a source of surprises.
  5. A simple shot of bright stars as my first contribution to the challenge. Taken 2017-05-16. Gear: Olympus E-PL6 with OM-Zuiko 200mm/4 at F/4 on Celestron Nexstar SLT Capture: 16 lights (/ 40% keep) x 20s x 1600iso, 10 darks Processing: Regim 3.3, Fotoxx 12.01+ Sky: good seeing, SQM=21.4
  6. Took this on Wednesday with my Dslr, baby Tak on Star Aventurer. 37 1 minute subs at iso 800 with ClS clip filter stacked & processed in Pixinsight. Although I used a bahtinov mask I think my focus might be out a touch as I have small red rings around some stars. I’m finding it very difficult to get good star colour, I’m not sure why so any help will be gratefully received.
  7. Here's my take on the ever popular beehive cluster! Taken from my back garden in Birmingham whilst battling with the moon 26x 120s exposures at iso800. Taken with SW ed80 ds pro, heq5pro (guided) and unmodified canon 200d Processed with startools, light room mobile and aviary. Spikes added for sparklyness!
  8. Overhead tonight! The busy Beehive (M44) and the striking blue/gold double star Iota Cancri about 9 degrees to its northwest, visible in the evening sky. The Beehive Cluster (M44): The gorgeous Iota Cancri double, known as the "Winter Albireo", now the "Spring Albireo": Next clear night, check out these beautiful celestial objects at zenith in the evening Spring sky! Reggie
  9. I had a go at imaging M44 on a Moonlit sky a few days ago expecting to not get anything useful out of it - more keeping my hand in. I struggled a bit with the background sky using DBE twice and Noiseaware then Paintshop Pro X8 and it's come out not too bad I think. The different star colours are there. Any comments/suggestions are welcome as usual. Peter
  10. From the album: Alt-Az / NoEQ DSO challenge

    The beehive cluster (M44) Gear: Olympus E-PL6 with OM-Zuiko 200mm/4 at F/4 on Celestron Nexstar SLT Capture: 16 lights (/ 40% keep) x 20s x 1600iso, 10 darks Processing: Regim 3.3, Fotoxx 12.01+ Site: Deep country 26km from Limoges, France Sky: good seeing, SQM=21.4

    © Fabien COUTANT

  11. 06.02.13 a rare (very rare) clear sky gave me a chance to get the scope out. with no real plan as such, there were a few messiers i wanted to get sketched. although seen at least once before,some were with my old 90mm scope so a revisit was in order. m44 the beehive cluster in cancer the crab. 3.1 mag. shame i dont posess a lower power than x50 at the moment as this is a large cluster and sketching it at this magnification really does not do justice . but a nice easy target to shake of the rust. a short shift south and onto a favourite o/c of mine m67. 6.9 mag. sketched at x60. with those two done i took a swing over to puppis for a look at the o/c's id seen back in feb last year with the old scope. m46.is a magnitude 6.1 cluster with a planetary nebula within. the p/n (ngc2438) could be made out as a faint but actually fairly large patch at x 150 . its actually a foreground object around half the distance of the cluster . after viewing at higher power i dropped down to x50 to sketch. a nudge 2 o clock from m46 brought me onto the brighter 4.4 mag open cluster m47. quite a nice cluster with the centre few stars resembling a shape of the number 5 on a dice. as i write i recall wanting to see if ngc2440 was achievable ,but totally forgot ! so the last target of the night was m48 . a mag 5.8 o/c. large bright cluster and at x 50 could see several dozen stars. so okay , nothing new, apart from the planetary,but was enjoyable just to get out in the cold for a couple of hours. i noticed the lion rising up andwas tempted to stay out and get some more objects viewed , but the cold and work in the morning stopped that. clear skies all...
  12. Reprocessed an image from March. (What else can you do with this weather? ) 43 x 45 seconds (32 minutes total time on target) at ISO 1600 Pentax K20D & SW 150P on EQ3 Pro (although exif says that FL was 135 mm, clearly an old entry) No guiding, so slightly elongated stars bias & flats but no darks As usual, processed in PixInsight I think that stars are a little too blue, but I'll leave that for a re-reprocess
  13. 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
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