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Tips and hints for imaging on remote telescopes


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From another thread that was discussing this http://www.itelescope.net I decided to sign up as I like the idea of imaging and figured this might be a nice way to get involved.

I have no imaging background at all. So I'm really looking for any info that would help me to use this site in particular or anything that relates to imaging for a pure beginner. The site has a range of telescopes and equipment and they suggest a couple of scopes to use which are single shot colour imagers which may be easier for beginners to use. I have enough points -70- for about an hours worth of imaging time.

So I'm wondering what to picture and how to best go about it. I will probably buy make every photon count but I'm also interested in any other good books or resources that talk about the imaging side of things particularly as at the moment I don't intend to buy any of my own equipment at least not until I have a much better idea of what exactly I want out of astrophotography. So books that talk a lot about equipment and what to buy may be of less use to me presently.

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1 book that is available for persons new to astronomical photography & astronomy in general is called The Backyard Astronomer's Guide, by Terence Dickinson & Alan Dyer. Both of these gentlemen have decades of experience, Terence is the editor of Sky News magazine, & Alan Dyer is the associate editor of the same magazine. The magazine can be seen at www.skynews.ca. Both gentlemen have published many books on astronomy and astronomical photography. Alan Dyer, if my memory serves me well, is a multimedia program producer for many of the planetariums in N.America.

Alan has a web site; http://amazingsky.net/ where you can see some of his work & the equipment he uses. There are links at the top of the page. I would like to suggest to you to look at his web site, you can see some of his written & lots of his photography work. The Backyard Astronomer's Guide, I think, would serve you well when thinking about what to photograph & how to accomplish the best results. For people just learning about AP, this is a good start, other wise, google either authors name & you will certainly find the information your looking for, as both gentlemen are well published in N.America & regarded as some of the best AP photographers in N.America.

Hope this helps you a little bit,


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Hi papa, I've seen that book before and it certainly does look a very good overall astronomy book, but it does only have one chapter on ap.

What I really want is a good book on ap that doesn't talk about equipment selection but talks about the techniques of doing ap. Though it may be that I will need to know something of the equipment too. Mepc is on the agenda but I'm looking for other books and resources too.

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Really you need to break it down into 2 parts:

1. Acquiring the data

2. Processing the data

Acquiring the data:

For using the iTelescope's you'll want to know whats in the sky at each location and when the optimal time is to capture your data, so good planetarium software.. I use CdC for my "remote" rigg at home & Stelarium for planning but I'm finding it difficult to visualise using these to plan on the itelescopes.. especially the southern skies. I see Euan's now using TheSkyx Pro for this..http://stargazerslounge.com/topic/180306-what-70-on-remote-scopes-can-get-you-warning-big-images/#entry1865796

The other thing is to be able to have an idea of the FOV you'll have on each scope so CCD Calc is good for that. I've added each scope and camera into mine. http://www.newastro..../camera_app.php also this site will help http://www.12dstring.me.uk/fov.htm

If you go through the tutorials on iTelescope they help and also look at the members gallery. You'll see what exposure times and filters (for mono) they used. That will give you an idea.

Processing the data:

iTelescope will provide calibrated images as well so you could miss out the bias darks & flats part and head straight to stacking & processing if you want.

You'll need some software to do the stacking and some to process. Some are free some are not.

2 of the favorite free are:

Deep Sky Stacker http://deepskystacke...lish/index.html for stacking the subs

The Gimp http://www.gimp.org/ for post processing.

I also use paid for Apps, Starklabs Nebulosity, Adobe's Photoshop and Pleiades PixInsight. Which are very widely used amongst others.

There are quite a lot of processing tutorials on the web.. including on SGL such as here.. http://stargazerslou...and-techniques/ and here http://stargazerslou...and-techniques/ for starters.

and yes.. if you want to make every photon count then getting Steve's book is a must :smiley: ..

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