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Monkey and a Pinwheel

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Of course I will start this post with usual heading....

It's been quite some time since we've had any clear night skies to image under. Looking at my computer when starting up the observatory tonight (7 Jan 18) I noticed the last time I had used it appears to have been the 16th of November. Depressing.

I tried to make the most of tonight by imaging two objects.

The first was the was a spiral galaxy in the constellation Triangulum called the Pinwheel Galaxy or referred to by it's Messier catalogue name - M33.

I've always found this object difficult to image. Previously I'd attempted it with my one shot colour ccd camera - and frankly I got better results than my effort tonight :-) 

However, I learned a bit more about LRGB imaging attempting this object tonight. I really didn't have enough time to capture the data I needed on it before it moved out of range of the observatory though so results are poor at best.



Although I considered getting another one shot colour ccd (namely the ASI1600 MC) I think it will be worth persevering with mono LRGB as better results can be obtained with patience.

Here's the capture profile for the image above



Disappointment over I moved on to the highlight of the evening. Narrow band imaging is always my favourite now as the detail that can be captured is amazing.

Tonight's object was NGC 2174 - the Monkey Head Nebula in Orion. I've never imaged this before so I was really looking forward to it.

Again - not really enough time on this to make it useful (see stats below) but it was fun capturing what I did and processing it afterwards - always an learning experience using Pixinsight - every time! :-)

This shot is in the SHO palette and heavily cropped


..and this one is in h-alpha - and not cropped


It will no doubt be a long time before I get to try again!

Here's the stats for the monkey


Obviously there is much wrong with these images - chief amongst the wrongness is the lack of subs, especially on M33.

I also had other problems though - the Ha flats failed as they were dark at the top of the frame and fading to lighter at the bottom - haven't seen that before, so no flats on the Ha. However, with the Teleskop Service 65 I find I get a pretty flat field normally anyway so it didn't impact too much.

Another problem was with the SHO palette. I've used it before on IC1396 and found it easy to apply using PixelMath in Pixinsight (following some advice I was given on this forum). However this time the image came out a pure vibrant green with the same settings - no matter how I mixed the channels - green - so I used SCNR to get rid of it and wound up with the image shown above. I intend to read up on this more :-)

...and finally, the all sky camera - I like to refer to it as WOBSCAM :-) captured a bunch on interesting objects while keeping an eye on any approaching cloud cover :-)




Edited by Guest
added an image of WOBSCAM
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