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The Silver Coin Galaxy ( NGC 253 ) in the Sculptor constellation - updated.

24th March 2017: New version that was reprocessed ( again ) to improve colour balance  ...

58d4a93c43c24_TheSilverCoininSculptor(NGC253)-IPADpro-reprocessed24mar17-compressed.thumb.jpg.b1170a1b749648aec0bb984cdbb7c925.jpg

 

original version below ( colours are a little too yellow )

image.jpeg

 

( 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

Edited by mike005
New version added - reprocessed to improve colour balance.
  • Like 35

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3 hours ago, David Smith said:

Well I'm no expert on imaging but I do like that Mike.

Thanks David, much appreciated.

  • Like 1

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A very nice image - you clearly got some jewels down under!

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On 10 November 2016 at 13:51, nucdoc said:

Very nice, I like the fine detail in the dust lanes

 

Mark

 

On 10 November 2016 at 19:31, Stephen Green said:

That is a very nice and detail

 

On 10 November 2016 at 21:47, PatrickGilliland said:

Nice work mike - lovely colours and detail. Paddy

 

On 10 November 2016 at 23:20, swag72 said:

This is looking very nice - The detail is great :)

 

On 11 November 2016 at 02:28, simmo39 said:

Yep, V nice!

 

On 11 November 2016 at 04:49, gorann said:

A very nice image - you clearly got some jewels down under!

 

Thank you very much everyone for your very kind comments, they are much appreciated as always - sorry it has taken a while to reply.

This was the first occasion that I have tried to capture this object and I am quite please with the result; although I think it could be improved with more image time and clearer and darker skies - I only managed to record a total of around 1hr or so as the moon was setting and before the high altitude wispy clouds thickened too much and stared to cover the whole sky.  With luck I will get another chance next weekend after the full moon.  

Cheers

Mike

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I think this is the fifth time I've viewed your image Mike - I really love it with the flat background making the subject galaxy seemingly float in the centre of the frame - really super.

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9 hours ago, Barry-Wilson said:

I think this is the fifth time I've viewed your image Mike - I really love it with the flat background making the subject galaxy seemingly float in the centre of the frame - really super.

 

4 hours ago, graemlourens said:

Great image, and i'm very impressed of your tight stars & core detail.

Kind regards, Graem

Thanks Guys, much appreciated.

Cheers

Mike

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It is still raining here in Sydney so I have been looking again at my older images.  I decided that this one could be improved with another attempt at processing to improve the colour balance of the stars.  The reduced yellow levels have also had an impact on ( improved ? ) the galaxy.

58cdc2fa821e8_TheSilverCoininSculptor(NGC253)-IPADpro-reprocessed18mar17-compressed.thumb.jpg.6968cdf2fcdcac1883467f84faa49f67.jpg

( Please click / tap on image to see larger and sharper )

( note this version has also been placed as an update to the original post above )

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very nice image and details also.. :icon_albino:

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On 21/03/2017 at 02:28, artem said:

very nice image and details also.. :icon_albino:

Thanks for that ...

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It's a great image, highly detailed without being forced.

For me, somewhere between the two colour balances maybe. The galaxy is starting to look slightly violet as the yellows have been brought down and I think the original background sky is the most neutral.

But what a cracker.

Olly

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That's lovely! As others have said, super detail and really nice, tight stars - well done sir! :thumbsup:

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21 hours ago, gnomus said:

Very nice and I prefer the new version.

 

16 hours ago, RichLD said:

That's lovely! As others have said, super detail and really nice, tight stars - well done sir! :thumbsup:

Thanks guys, much appreciated.

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16 hours ago, ollypenrice said:

It's a great image, highly detailed without being forced.

For me, somewhere between the two colour balances maybe. The galaxy is starting to look slightly violet as the yellows have been brought down and I think the original background sky is the most neutral.

But what a cracker.

Olly

Yes, I think you are right.  I have had a look at the pixel values of a couple of the stars I can identify and they are too violet/magenta.  I thing about half way might well be about right.

Cheers

Mike

 

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2 hours ago, mike005 said:

Yes, I think you are right.  I have had a look at the pixel values of a couple of the stars I can identify and they are too violet/magenta.  I thing about half way might well be about right.

Cheers

Mike

 

I tend to go off the background sky, which I like to be as close to 23/23/23 as possible in Ps.

Olly

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21 hours ago, ollypenrice said:

I tend to go off the background sky, which I like to be as close to 23/23/23 as possible in Ps.

Olly

I have been trying to get the star colours right because I cannot rely on the background due to significant and variable light pollution in my area.

Having said that, I just found the source of the colour caste in my integrated image (it was very yellow); the normalisation setting I was using was causing a colour shift - not sure why.  In the image below I turned off normalisation during integration and the star colours are now much closer to their published values.  The background I adjusted by aligning the peaks (with a mask to reduce any impact to the bright parts of the image) and then desatured the shadows to really knock back any residual light pollution.  

58d4a844868b7_TheSilverCoininSculptor(NGC253)-IPADpro-reprocessed24mar17-compressed.thumb.jpg.76225f7d261255316315c3029a5889e2.jpg

( please click / tap on image to see larger and sharper - and for some reason, more colourful )

 

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Wow, now you're talking! Magnificent image. Anyone reading this should certainly follow Mike's advice to click for the higher quality. There is a lot of difference.

Olly

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That's a great shot, Mike, great detail in the galaxy, and colours very nicely done indeed!

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