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Found 143 results

  1. Hello I am trying to find ways to observe more detail on Mars. I am observing him between 35 degrees and 50 degress altitude. He is SOOOO bright that the intensity of the light is washing out any surface detail. I can just about make out the Southern polar cap and can see (just) some surface shapes but it's the brightness of the planet that is (ironically) the issue. I do have some colour filters which I can use over the eyepiece. Any tips for which colour is best, please? I have tried observing with various magnification, ranging from 8mm to 32mm. My focal length is 2800mm and focal ratio F10, (CPC1100) Any tips /advice / help all glady welcomed, thank you. Bonus - tonight I got to see Uranus, looking like a little light blue / green ice ball and a transit of Ganymede's shadow on Jupiter! Very cool. Siouxsie
  2. Mars was taken at night between 20:57 and 22:29 UTC. Equipment used: Celestron SCT C8, Barlow 2x, GSO #29 (dark red), ASI120MM Mini, HEQ5 mount. Animation was prepared from 20 images with drizzle 150% (the best 10% of frames from 60-second movies): One of the best images from 21:55UT:
  3. Hello, I'm new to astronomy and have recently brought a low budget telescope (about £60). I've been out a few time to view Mars and the moon. Obviously I can view the moon clearly and with great detail but when I go to view Mars all I can see is a bright circle. I'm not sure if I'm being daft or what, but I can't find anywhere online that has an answer to this. Details about my telescope are: It's a reflector telescope Model 76700 Diam: 76mm Focal length: 700mm
  4. https://youtu.be/yG9BFrbyG9BFrb1k1s Guys any suggestions on how to get better results using a 5inch reflector? For this I used a smartphone to capture 10s video at ISO:200 ,shutter: 1/100 Preprocessing in PIPP and stacked in registax with some wavelets too.
  5. Hi everyone. Thanks for looking. I know we're inundated with Mars pictures at the moment but I've not seen buckets of time-lapse and this marks a significant personal best for me so I really wanted to share it. I've not had seeing this good for a long time, especially with a planet this high above the horizon (I'm looking at you Jupiter & Saturn.....). Only 12 frames spread across ~1 hour, but nice to see some movement. One single still as a bonus too Edit to add acquisition & processing: Skywatcher Skyliner 200P reflector (off my dobsonian), 1200 mm, unbranded 3x barlow for 3600 focal length, f/18 Skywatcher NEQ6 Pro mount ZWO ASI120MC-S - gain 33, 20 ms exposure, 2000 frames per video Each video recorded with 5 minute spacing. 12 recorded in total. Stacked in Autostakkert 3, best 30% of frames. Wavelets, colour balance, and tweaks in Registax 6. GIF assembled in Photoshop with a few final contrast and levels tweaks.
  6. Having taken some images last week when we had a good spell of seeing I had pretty much filled up my hard drive with files and I've since been clearing and sorting what I have. The attached are a few mars animations showing the planets rotation over an hour or so on the 16th and the 21st to 22nd of September as well as the best still I have so far processed. I'm still not happy with my processing but hopefully that's a skill that improves over time. All taken on 8.5 inch newt with asi224mc. The first two at around f18 and the last and the still at f33 with a combination of barlows and bits (basically imagine if Frankenstein made an image set up) All processed through pipp and as3. Still was taken from 35% of 15000 then registax for wavelets. Right then, back to my digital housekeeping, only another Tb to sort!
  7. Hi guys, I am a newbie on this forum, this is my first topic here but I would like to show you my recent planetary imaging results. I started to catch the planets with a dedicated planetary camera last month but never thought that a small 4" Maksutov can show such small details. The equpment I used: SW 102/1300 Maksutov 2.25x Q-turret Barlow lens QHY5L-II color camera EQ-3 GOTO mount All the images were taken on differend countrysides in Hungary. I hope you will like it Also, please share your images taken with similar OTA, I'd like to learn some tricks from others as well Jupiter's 15 minutes of rotation. Captured with Firecapture, processed in AS!3, Registax and WinJUPOS (2020.08.21) Saturn, 1 hours stacked with AS!3, processed in Registax (2020.09.05) Mars, 3 hours of rotation. Captured with Firecapture, stacked with AS!3, processed in Registax. (2020.08.22) Mars again, 5 minutes stacked in AS!3, processed in Registax. You can see also Olympus Mons and Arsia Mons next to the terminator (2020.09.05) Finally, a result of a Hungarian star party where I learned how to use properly my equipment This time I borrowed an ADC for Saturn.
  8. Images taken between 03:01 & 03:52 this morning. C9.25; CGEM; ASI385MC; ZWO ADC; ES 3x Telextender; Baader neodymium filter. AutoStakkert!3; RegiStax6; PS CS4 Extended. Socially distanced comments/suggestions welcomed as always.
  9. Hi, A few sketches from last night 2x Mars and also one of M2. 1st Mars one was in poor seeing, 2nd was better. M2 view was affected by heavy moonlight. Also observed (but didn't sketch) some Hercules doubles, Uranus, Neptune and also M45 by naked eye. Best night for a while! Lee
  10. Had a great view of Mars last night at ~11.30pm. Best I've seen it so far this year I think. Sketch below. I think the darker regions in the S are Mare Cimmerium, Mare Sirenum and Mare Chromium. Could also clearly see the South Polar Cap and limb cloud at the following side of the planet.
  11. Some quick results on Mars from the morning of 20 July. The seeing was good and Mars at a good altitude. Equipment: CPC800, ASI224MC with IR-cut and IR-pass filters, ADC. The surface features show more clearly in infrared. I forgot to try a Barlow lens on this small target, but have not had any good results with the cheap Skywatcher x2 Barlow in the past. So these images are kinda small; I was going to x2 them in Photoshop but am having a problem with my network just now. The surface detail checks out as Syrtis Major and Hellas with the southern icecap.
  12. Perhaps the title is lying a tiny bit... After sleeping for one hour I woke up not able to fall asleep again after numerous attempts. I took the obligatory gaze outside at the bright summer sky with some faint noctilucent clouds towards the north. Jupiter and Saturn looked beautiful in the south and that was when I felt a sudden itch to get out my small grab and go setup. I quickly grabbed my tripod, mount-head and telescope to head downstairs to the parking lot where I quickly set up the scope. Cool-down was almost not a problem because of the hot 20 degree air which was very comfortable observing temperatures. Starting with Jupiter, after I had achieved focus on Altair, the two main cloud bands very obvious together with three of its moons hovering like pin-points around the perfect round sphere. I've previously been a little disappointed with the view of Jupiter with this small Skywatcher Evostar 72ED DS-Pro but I blamed it on my own patience and this morning I proved myself right. After studying the planet for a couple of minutes I noticed the Ganymede shadow transit located just above (almost on the edge of) the northern equatorial belt and letting the planet drift through the FOV at 90X magnification with the 4.7mm explore scientific eyepiece the shadow together with the bands popped at me at times of great seeing. The moments where you're almost "falling into" a better and better planetary image is truly amazing and the small 72mm scope did a very good job also resolving the shadow transit as a "globe" rather than a dot. Only rarely could I tell the slight variations in the two main cloud bands of Jupiter but this was very difficult with only 72mm. Saturn proved to be equally fascinating just like every other time I point the telescope towards the ringed planet. Immediately slight banding was visible on the planet and the rings were very defined with the Cassini-division visible in moments of good seeing but really standing out in brief moments of very good seeing. The small evostar 72 has no problem on Saturn whereas more patience is required with Jupiter because of its low contrast features. Saturn never disappoints. Moving on to Mars I noticed how it had increased slightly in size since I observed it last time about a month ago. The southern polar cap was still very obvious but for some reason I recalled it being even more noticeable last time I observed Mars but I could be wrong. Right above the polar cap was a dark spot which extended to the planet's equator but not covering the entirety of the disk's width. I didn't notice any features on the northern half of the disk. The evostar does a surprisingly good job on Mars, which often causes problems for other doublet refractors with trouble correcting the red part of the visible spectrum. The evostar doesn't have much unfocused red light around the planet and the view isn't "mushy" like it would be in cases of a badly corrected refractor. I love my grab and go setup but I also feel like I need a higher magnification eyepiece since my current weapon of choice is my 4.7mm explore scientific 82 degree eyepiece which delivers about 90X magnification. I've almost always felt I could easily push magnifications to the plus side of 100X and the Nagler zoom 3-6mm is ranked very high on my wish list:) August this year marks the first year of owning the Skywatcher Evostar 72ED DS-Pro and I haven't had a moment where I didn't love it. The size of it is perfect and the supplied flight case for the scope is airline portable together with some room for accessories. The optics are very good even for decent planetary observing like it was the case this morning, and I feel like I haven't utilized the scope's abilities entirely just because I think it could take even higher magnifications. I have also used it for astrophotography on my star adventurer which yields very good results with the OVL field flattener and my old Nikon D3300. This post ended up being quite long but I hope it was worth the read anyways. If you're considering the Evostar-72 I once again highly recommend it if you couldn't already tell from this post;) Clear skies, Victor
  13. Following my effort of 22 June, being unable to lift anything heavy, I set up my lighter weight telescope in a different position from the previous night to get some images of Mars. This was the first serious use of my EQ-5 with Synscan upgrade. I set up the gear and left it tracking the assumed GoTo position of Jupiter for a couple of hours. At 2am, Jupiter was not within the 25mm eyepiece field. Not so impressive. I repeated the imaging of Jupiter and Saturn, and also took images with the ZWO infrared filter. While slewing back to Jupiter, now apparently past the meridian, the mount did a meridian flip and ended up pointing at a street lamp. I was not impressed. Eventually Mars emerged from behind an adjacent building, and I took images in IR, visual, and visual with a x2 Barlow lens. Equipment: 127mm Maksutov 1500mm fl, ASI224MC camera, ADC, x2 Skywatcher Barlow, best 20% of 5000 frames (visual), processed in Registax6. EQ-5 Pro Synscan mount. Key: Monochrome images were taken in infrared. Larger Mars image with Barlow. Mars was jigging about in the poor seeing by nearly its diameter (11"). Note: the hottest moon (Io, to left of planet) seems slightly brighter in the IR images. I think the 127mm Mak punches through poor seeing better than larger apertures.
  14. I imaged Jupiter, Saturn and Mars this morning around 3.30am in the interval between 'high enough' and dawn. Equipment: CPC800, ASI224MC, ADC. Captured with Sharpcap, processed with Registax6. Used best 20% of 5000 frame videos. It's so long since I did any planetary imaging that I had to re-learn what to do. The Jupiter and Saturn images seem under-exposed.
  15. Yesterday I managed to climb out of bed at a little past 3:30AM to get my small portable rig out to a small nearby park and setup to observe Jupiter, Saturn and Mars. I got the Skywatcher Evostar 72ED DS-Pro last summer so I was especially excited to see how it would perform on Mars because of its red wavelengths which many small fracs often have trouble with handling. At first it was partly cloudy but I persisted and was out and setup on the field at around 4AM. The sky was already surprisingly bright here in Denmark but Jupiter was shining bright and Saturn faintly visible almost right besides Jupiter. Fortunately for me it wasn't too cold, but I was happy I brought some gloves anyways;) This picture was taken at 5AM while I was observing Mars. I remember from last year that my scope didn't perform great on Jupiter for some reason, and the view of the gas giant wasn't anything different this time either. Using my 4.7mm ES 82 degree eyepiece not much detail visible except the two main bands and its moons. I would later return to Jupiter after the scope had cooled down a little and the view was perhaps a little sharper. Pointing the scope at Saturn, which I was very satisfied with last year, I was amazed of the detail the small scope managed to squeeze out. It doesn't compare to the view I had last year with my 10" dob under great conditions at 255X but I was able to easily spot surface banding on the planet itself, and the Cassini division was also surprisingly stable. I really enjoy the stable and consistent view through the small refractor! I observed Saturn for quite a while until I eventually set out to try to find Mars. At this point I couldn't even see Saturn with the naked eye but I was fortunate that Saturn and Mars were approximately the same elevation above the horizon. After a few sweeps across where I though Mars would be I finally located the small red speckle, this time with my 6.7mm eyepiece so I had a larger FOV. Switching to the 4.7mm, though still very small, I was surprised that I could pick up a dark surface marking across the disk on the lower southern half of the disk. Furthermore, the southern polar cap was really pronounced and you couldn't miss it. I watched Mars drift through the FOV until about 30 minutes after sunrise where the contrast between the planet and the sky became too low and the dew started to set on the lens element. Using my small refractor for observing the planets I have always wanted to magnify things a little bit more, and I think the telescope would have no problem doing so. A Nagler zoom 3-6mm has been on my wish-list for a couple of years now, but the upcoming planet season really makes me want to find one second hand Here's a video I've made that covers what I've written above with some footage I tried capturing through the eyepiece: I hope everyone on here is still doing well despite the current situation! Clear skies! Victor
  16. spaceman_spiff

    Mars July 2018

    From the album: Planetary work

    This is a re-processed image from some videos I recorded on a trip to Somerset in 2018 during the Mars Opposition. Unfortunately, I lost the exact day of the recording. Telescope: Skymax 150 Maksutov with a TeleVue 2x Barlow. Focal length was approximately 3600mm. Camera: Canon 550D unmodified at ISO 200 with 1/60 exposure. Video was recorded in 640x480 crop mode at 60fps. Processing: Video formatting, quality control and centralising done using Pipp, stacking and tweaking done using Registax.

    © D Elijah

  17. This planetary grouping from 20th March around 5.30am shows Saturn to the left with conjunction of Jupiter above & Mars below, sharp eyed may also see... Io, Ganymede & Callisto in a string just right of Jupiter. Image taken from Lesmahagow, South Lanarkshire looking toward the SE. Pentax K1 / Pentax 67 165mm lens / Exp. 2 secs @f8 / iso 200 Ioptron tracker at siderial.
  18. Stu

    Opposition of Mars

    Mars at Opposition, best placed for viewing ie at its largest apparent diameter of 24.3 arc seconds, visual magnitude -2.8 and a distance of 57.8 million km. It transits at 1.15am but at a height of only 13.2 degrees above the horizon from London. Best bet is to get on a plane and head South!
  19. Stu

    Moon and Mars Conjunction

    A tricky one to see being very low in the sky just before dawn. At 5am the Moon is at around 15 degrees altitude, with Mars just under 3.5 degrees away Best seen with the naked eye or binoculars
  20. mitchelln

    Mars 140415 5

    From the album: Mars

    Mars on 15ht April 2014

    © Neill Mitchell

  21. From the album: My Astro Pics

    Taken with my Panasonic Lumix through a Baader Zoom Eyepiece + Baader Neodymium Filter using my Orion XT8.

    © ©DanielJamesWatts

  22. Hey guys. Thought about starting this thread. I feel like we all should inform eachother and newer members alike about the magngifications that can be achieved on planets,that provide the best sharpness/size ratio,depending on the scope and seeing. After this thread has grown a bit, i feel like this should be pinned,as to provide a little guide to newer members that are not experienced with planetary observing,as many will be fooled with the typical 50x per inch of aperture and get disappointed when they find that that image will be dim and blurry. For my 8” F/6 Sky-Watcher Dob For Saturn i like to use 150x in medium seeing and if i want something a bit bigger , switch to 240x ,which will give me a bigger,but blurrier image.iBut In good seeing, i found that 240x was very usable.When we have perfect conditions, i m certainly trying 300x. Mars, isnt very big in the sky right now,so even at high magnifications like 300x it still appears as a small orange dot. For observing mars,I suggest waiting for it to reach opposition.It benifits hugely from it! However,this happens once every 2 years....But 5ere are other planets to keep you occupied until then, such as jupiter,saturn and Venus. For Venus, i use 50-100-120 depending on its phase. For Jupiter, i like to use 150x, as it provides a very sharp image,with key features of the planet such as bands being very detailed.Waiting on my 6mm UWA Skywatcher to bring it to 200 and see how that plays out. Be careful! Don’t magnify jupiter too much, as it will loose much of its features and sharpness. Neptune and Uranus: These two will not impress, but are certainly have a nice colour to them. Even ar high magnifications, such as 300x and 400x, they will look like small discs with color in them.Uranus will look be colored green and Neptune a fainter blue. Mercury About mercury...Havent gotten the chance to observe it ,so the guys will have to inform you about that? Feel free to give your own opinions as to give members a wider source of information to help them observe better ! Cheers and clear skies. Kronos
  23. Mars 31/07/2018 01:36 GSO 0.20 m Sky-Watcher EQ-5 Pro Deluxe motorized ASI 120MC + IR/UV Cut filter GSO barlow lens 5x (APO) Baader Planetarium IR/UV Cut filter f: 5000 mm f/25 Matteo Vacca Milis, Italy http://vaccamatteo.weebly.com/ https://www.astrobin.com/users/matteovacca/ My best Mars with the newton. ?
  24. Mars will appear at a perihelic opposition from the Sun during the night of 2018 JUL 26-27. Greatest brilliance at magnitude -2.8 is expected on JUL 28, with closest approach to Earth on JUL 31. It will be nearly as bright and close as in 2003, which was its closest in more than 60,000 years. Photos and descriptions of Mars during its current apparition would be welcome additions to this thread.
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