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By Eta Carina fan
Hi. I live in Santiago, Chile, and on a recent trip back home to the US, bought a new Explore Scientific Exos100 PMC mount, to use here for AP with my DSLR and AT72ED scope. I have the ExploreStars app installed on my iPad, and it links fine, with slewing controls working from the tablet. My problem is, despite the fact that the app displays correctly my southern hemisphere location, the mount tracks as if it were in the northern hemisphere. I cannot find a hemisphere switch on the unit (like found on my SW Star Adventurer). I have written to ES but so far, no response. I am hoping to connect with EXOS100 users in So Africa, Australia or other southern hemisphere locations, to learn directly from them how they overcame this issue. Thanks!
I was lucky enough to spend Easter in Mauritius and managed to get a night of imaging in despite the tropical night time clouds! As someone who lives in the Northern hemisphere, the Carina nebula has always been a target I've coveted, but during my holiday, I also loved Crux as prominent constellation in the Southern sky. So when I ran into polar alignment issues with my Skyguider Pro, I decided to play it safe and go for a wider field, capturing both those targets rather than focusing purely on Carina as was my original goal.
This was shot from my father in law's rooftop in Bonne Terre, Vacoas, Mauritius and my basic polar alignment meant significant field rotation, but I still got some usable data. Cropped, processed and finally upsampled.
Data was shot at f/2.8 with a 50mm lens, unguided on an unmodified Sony a6500. 174 lights at 30 secs each = 1.4 hours of integration. Bortle 5.
From the colours it looks like these objects sit right on the disc of the Milky Way and I know there is more in the picture I haven't mentioned!
Thanks for looking!
POLAR ALIGNMENT IF THE POLE STAR IS OBSTRUCTED (e.g. OBSERVING ON A S-FACING BALCONY!!!) Set up your scope on the floor (assuming it's reasonably level) in equatorial mode, with a rough guess at North. Put the tube into whatever 'home' position the instructions specify, or that you have chosen. Now choose an easily recognisable bright star at mid altitude. Pretend you HAVE polar aligned, and tell the scope to go to this star. When the slewing stops lift the scope very gently and turn the mount round till the star is in the centre of the field of view and you should have a fairly good polar alignment. If you are for example videoing planets and can also autoguide, this alignment may be all you need. But you can now refine it by the drift method if you need to - see https://www.skyandtelescope.com/astronomy-resources/accurate-polar-alignment/ This method should be quite useful for Southern hemisphere observing, where the 'south pole star' - Sigma Octantis - is difficult to find especially in light polluted skies. And of course my advice here applies if you have a North-facing balcony!
I am having a little trouble and I was hoping someone here could help me out a bit. Last July I went to the southern hemisphere and took some pictures of the night sky and things in it. I'd like to know what Im looking at though, but Im not at all familiar with the southern hemisphere night sky. If you could please look at these pictures and let me know what they are of, I'd appreciate it. I think one might be the Large Magellanic Cloud, but Im not sure and even if it is, I dont know which one. I took the pictures on the night of July 3 at around 9PM; at the time, I was on the island of Moorea. Thanks!