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Northernlight

Future of Astro Photography

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Hi All,

I've been holding off a new scope upgrade for imaging and I'm a little uncertain about the future of Astro Photography with the recently announcements about star-link and other similar projects putting tens of thousands of satellites into orbit.

For me personally, I know how many subs I see impacted  by just 2000 satellites, let alone SpaceX adding another 12,000 as well as other players like Boeing adding their satellites.

Would love to hear peoples thoughts on the topic. Is Astro imaging still going to be a viable hobby 5 years from now ? Or do people think that this is not really an issue as it can sorted during processing ??

Cheers,

Rich.

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My fingers are crossed that this will be another processing challenge. It is of course going to have a negative affect on the hobby but not one that put me off (touch wood).

 

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We just better hope a cme does not render them all useless because then replacement satellites would be launched before the old destroyed satellites orbits decayed putting twice the current satellites in orbit whatever that number is now and this would include military satellites some of which are uncounted. So I guess my point here is there is no real predictor as to what future numbers will be We can though count on an increase and if things go bad double that. If they go bad repeatedly and there are successive cme's than it might be worth finding another hobby or a hand crank generator...

 

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7 hours ago, Northernlight said:

SpaceX adding another 12,000

Are they in high enough orbit to be visible at times when we're likely imaging?

 

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I've never thrown away a sub because of sat or plane trails. Big plane trails can be removed (or almost) by using a Remove Line filter and the rest disappear using sigma stacking. Given that the trend is towards CMOS, with which more and shorter subs work best, the power of Sigma stacking goes up even higher. 

Olly

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Progress is similar to plastic bags in the sea!     henry b.

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17 minutes ago, ollypenrice said:

I've never thrown away a sub because of sat or plane trails. Big plane trails can be removed (or almost) by using a Remove Line filter and the rest disappear using sigma stacking. Given that the trend is towards CMOS, with which more and shorter subs work best, the power of Sigma stacking goes up even higher. 

Olly

This is good but I just had a thought (unusual for me in the morning), does Sigma stacking have a detrimental effect on any asteroids or meteors that might show up in the FOV?

Alan 

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As someone whose main interest is imaging, I share these concerns expressed in this and the earlier thread.  My thoughts on the problem are as follows:

Prior to the launch of the first SpaceX satellites, I would typically see satellite/aircraft trails in fewer than 5% of my subs and as Olly says above, these can be processed out.  Where I live in Wiltshire, aircraft are a bigger problem than satellites, so probably only 2% of my subs have been impacted by satellites.  I therefore hope that even a 10-fold increase in satellite density will still be manageable using my current processing methods.

Again, echoing Olly's comments on CMOS sensors, in my sky-limited suburban location  exposures are typically 1 to 2 minutes using an ASI294 OSC and 2 - 5 minutes with an ASI1600 Mono and RGB or NB Filters.

To be honest, the UK weather is a far, far, bigger problem for me.  It is almost 2 months since I had a clear enough night to get the kit out and even on a 'good' night, more subs are spoiled by passing cloud or rising mist than man-made objects moving through the fov.  That said, it is frightening that, having polluted our planet close to the point of extinction, we are now starting to do the same with space . . .

Dave

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Posted (edited)
39 minutes ago, Alien 13 said:

This is good but I just had a thought (unusual for me in the morning), does Sigma stacking have a detrimental effect on any asteroids or meteors that might show up in the FOV?

Alan 

It would remove them. However, you could replace them if you wished, provided they weren't scribbled on by sat trails! You could make your stack and stretch it to an initial level. Then you'd take the single sub with the meteor and stretch that to the same level (getting the background sky to the same value.) You could then paste this onto the stack, select only the area around the meteor, delete the rest and change the blend mode to Lighten. this would put just the meteor back into the main image.

Olly

Edit: this is in Photoshop, I should have said, but other graphics packages will allow something similar.

Edited by ollypenrice
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Posted (edited)
Quote

I've never thrown away a sub because of sat or plane trails. Big plane trails can be removed (or almost) by using a Remove Line filter and the rest disappear using sigma stacking. Given that the trend is towards CMOS, with which more and shorter subs work best, the power of Sigma stacking goes up even higher. 

Does that include the Witch Head Nebula Olly.  I use Kappa sigma stacking in Astroart and it woukld not get rid of the tons of satelittes in that target for me.  Though maybe I didn't manage to capture sufficient subs - would that be a factor? 

Carole

Edited by carastro
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3 hours ago, carastro said:

Does that include the Witch Head Nebula Olly.  I use Kappa sigma stacking in Astroart and it woukld not get rid of the tons of satelittes in that target for me.  Though maybe I didn't manage to capture sufficient subs - would that be a factor? 

Carole

The WItch Head is a geostationary satellite nightmare for sure, Carole. The first time I tried it, a good few years ago, I made the accidental discovery that the Sigma routine was far better in V5 than V4. V4 didn't remove them but V5 did. On my second visit to the target last year I still had a plague of satellites but Sigma did fix them. I stack using Sigma Average at the default setting of 1.8.  If you have a stubborn one AA has the Remove Line filter under Filters-Cosmetic-Remove Line. You click on each end of a line and remove it. Do it to the individual sub before stacking and, even if it doesn't remove it completely, it will help Sigma to get rid of it.

Olly

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Posted (edited)

Thanks for all that Olly, have made a note of it.  So Sigma average is better than kappa sigma? 

I have Astroart V5 so hopefully should work OK, though Kappa sigma didn''t on the Witch Head.  Might go back to that and try it again.

Quote

AA has the Remove Line filter under Filters-Cosmetic-Remove Line. 

I didn't know about that.  Also noted. 

Carole 

Edited by carastro

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1 hour ago, carastro said:

Thanks for all that Olly, have made a note of it.  So Sigma average is better than kappa sigma? 

I have Astroart V5 so hopefully should work OK, though Kappa sigma didn''t on the Witch Head.  Might go back to that and try it again.

I didn't know about that.  Also noted. 

Carole 

Hmmm, where is this Kappa Sigma, Carole? I can't find it!

Olly

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Posted (edited)

Having looked it appears I am actually using Sigma average and not sigma kappa (must have been thinking of DSS).

Carole

Edited by carastro

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