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After a pretty dreary September and part of October, I was finally able to get out with students to do some viewing. Here are some of the objects viewed over two nights using Starlight Live software on my Borg 77edii (f/4) and Borg 125SD (f/5) with a Trius 694 mono camera. In most cases an IDAS NB-1 "nebula" filter was employed to help with the suburban light pollution in our skies. The first night (mainly 125SD) was much steadier and drier, but along the coast we take what we can get when it isn't raining! ;-D
It's so much fun to see these objects from less-than-optimal skies... I often intend to quit much earlier, only to find myself saying (over and over!) "... oh, look, <object> is coming up... I should just have a look at that before I pack up." And then another hour goes by!
- Greg A
Eastern & Western Veil
Comparison of FOV between two scopes on the NA Nebula
Again, FOV comparison on the Elephant Trunk Nebula
And again, with the Rosette Nebula
Pacman Nebula through the 125SD:
And Crab Nebula:
And the Cocoon Nebula:
Finally, a few wider shots of objects using the Borg77: Flame/Horsehead, California Nebula, Pelican Nebula and Andromeda Galaxy:
Today we published first release candidate to version 0.19.1 - please help us testing Stellarium!
List of changes between version 0.19.0 and master (0.19.0.16926/0.19.1RC1):
- Added allow to search an inactive meteor showers in Search Tool/Lists tool
- Added 'Azimuth vs. Time' graph into AstroCalc/Graphs tool
- Added feature to show tracks for latest several selected planets (GH: #539)
- Added calculation and showing the orbital period for artificial satellites
- Added revolutions per day info for artificial satellites
- Added tools for jumping to the next or previous time of rising, transit or setting for selected object (GH: #484)
- Added new behavoir for AstroCalc/Graphs when clicking within graph area now sets current time.
- Fixed issue in script 'Mercury Triple Sunrise and Sunset'
- Fixed crash of Stellarium for eyepieces with permanent crosshair
- Fixed Stellarium crash when Remote Control plugin is working
- Fixed computation of assume radius for minor planets.
- Fixed the issue of the scrolling not working properly on Mac (GH: #393)
- Fixed crash in Scripting Engine (Hide artificial satellites through StelProperties in core.clear() method to avoid crash if plugin was didn't loaded)
- Fixed planetarium crash in HiPS (network manager delete problem)
- Fixed position problems on the Poles (GH: #391)
- Fixed scaling Telrad sign on HighDPI monitors
- Fixed surface occlusion bug even with landscape turned off in scripting engine (GH: #680)
- Fixed building with cmake -DBUILD_SHARED_LIBS=ON (GH: #683)
- Fixed error in constellation file format (Babylonian)
- Fixed Europe/Volgograd time zone settings (GH: #686)
- Fixed HiPS handling of allsky download (GH: #671)
- Fixed progress bar rendering (GH: #671)
- Fixed positive declinations issue in AstroCalc tool when option 'Use decimal degrees' is enabled (GH: #690)
- Fixed file names inconsistency
- Fixed constellation line in "Japanese Moon Stations" skyculture
- Fixed file name for constellation boundaries in Stellarium User Guide
- Fixed the user interface problems in Oculars plug-in (GH: #580)
- Fixed getting the wrong values in objects/info method for selected object for different formats (Remote Control plugin)
- Fixed refresh plots when AstroCalc dialog becomes visible again (AstroCalc/Graphs tool)
- Fixed jquery vulnerability (GH: #694)
- Fixed date and time dialog behaviour: Hour/Minute/Second spinners now correctly trigger signals dateChanged(), dateChangedByYear and dateChangedForMonth() when days, months or years are affected by it.
- Fixed update graphs in AstroCalc/Graphs tool when days change
- Updated planetary nomenclature
- Updated common names of stars and DSO's
- Updated cmake rules for Windows deployment
- Updated DSO textures
- Updated behaviour of HiPS survey if Stellarium started without network (GH: #681)
- Updated GUI for ArchaeoLines plugin (GH: #689, #682)
- Updated default pulsars catalog (v1.60)
- Updated list of asterisms
- Excluded Armintxe skyculture and landscape from default package
Download link: https://github.com/Stellarium/stellarium-data/releases/tag/beta
By Cosmic Geoff
On 25th March I tried some live stacking with Sharpcap and a 102mm f5 Startravel achromat & ASI120MC camera.
Mount was Celestron SLT on custom tripod. Image size: 1280x960.
With this setup it is possible to dial in an object to the GoTo and be confident that it will appear on the laptop screen.
These images may not look too exciting but they do mimic the FOV and general appearance as seen in a 203mm SCT with 25mm EP. Check the image for M87. When I checked the field in Stellarium I found that two faint non-star smudges matched with NGC4478 and NGC4476, which are 11th and 12th mag galaxies. I am gob-smacked that I managed to image these with such modest equipment from an urban site. There is no way I would be able to see these visually even with a C8 from here.
I gave a demonstration/workshop at my local Astro Group* about a simple way of removing light pollution from an Astro Photo.
The description I gave was deliberately for beginners, using a wide angle tripod shot photo and using one of the easiest packages to get to grips with (Paint.net).
The attached pdf covers the basic technique.
I'd appreciate any feedback on it.
* The Mid Cheshire Astronomical Group - all welcome, we meet on the last Friday of the Month.
After a fistful of stars from the other night here's a few stars more from last night . Transparency was poor, though and I had to give up in the end. As well as fitting the Lightwave 0.8x to my 80 mm F6, I've also transferred the scope to the Heq5. Although I think Sharpcap is great for live stacking it won't always detect enough stars to auto align which means I have to use guiding. I can see plenty of stars on the screen but Sharpcap refuses to share my view! I've tried noise reduction and boosted digital gain etc. I think I'll try the v3.2 beta. I might try without the uhc in future as it probably cuts out too much light when combined with the IDAS D1. All live stacked with darks and flats. Some were guided.
M35 - 20 x 30s with IDAS D1 and UHC:
NGC 2420 aka the Twinkling Comet Cluster, 30x30s:
Jellyfish Neb, 40x30s:
You can just see the edge of it with some stretching!
More apparent with overstretch but - yuk!