With the good weather last weekend a couple of us from the group decided to spontaneously meet up for some astronomy.
I always find that phd2 guiding performance is a direct indicator of conditions and on this occasion guiding was below 0.5″ all evening showing that we had exceptionally good seeing.
I started off with 35 images of M3 which will follow, and then when it was higher in the sky i switched over to M13. Using Rob’s 14″ dobsonian we had some amazing visuals of M51 with the spiral arms just visible. Nick turned up later and whilst Rob was setting up his imaging scope we had a go at star hopping to M3 which we couldn’t find. It just shows that myself and Nick are far to reliant on technology! Rob took over and quickly found our target which was amazing! Later in the night we also had some fantastic views of the ring nebula, different shades of grey clearly showing where the various colours would be with an image.
On this occasion i didn’t take any darks or flats thinking that M13 would be an easy target given its brightness. That was clearly a bad decision but its also a learning experience.
This was taken with the Baby Q and canon 6d with an Idas d1 filter.
NGC 6207 is also clear in the image as well as several other NGC, PGC and IC objects.
I’ve been reading a lot recently about camera noise and recommended ISO settings for each particular camera for astronomy. The camera I’ve been using was said to perform best at ISO 1600 which I think in astronomy terms is actually quite high for a Dslr. So I decided to test this out on the 8th Feb and managed 74x1min exposures at ISO 1600. I was very pleased with the low noise, although the light pollution south of me (Tamworth, Birmingham) was very strong since the horse head is relatively low on the horizon. I’m pleased with the result, although I think with a bit more processing experience I could possibly improve the image??? I was trying out Pixinsight for a second time so I hope to improve over the coming months/years. Canon 6d+Idas d1+Takahashi fsq.
The Soul nebula from 6.1.18. Unfortunately im limited by the local light pollution so only able to achieve 2-3min exposures from home. I do hope to purchase a monochrome sensor this year so i can try out narrowband imaging but im not 100% sure what camera to buy. 60×2.5min 10x darks, bias and flats. Takahashi fsq 85 + canon 6d + Idas d1 filter.
Its taken some time but Ive finally managed to start processing some of the images ive taken over the past few months. This is 60×2.5min ligthts iso 640, 10x darks, bias and flats. Takahashi fsq 85 + modified canon 6d + idas d1 filter.
Unfortunately i was unable to take any lights due to having to remove the camera but im relatively pleased with the outcome considering. The focus is also slightly out unfortunately but im pleased for the first attempt. This was from Friday 17th Nov. Tak fsq85 + Canon 6d + Idas D1 filter. 30x3min subs. DSS
Last weekend i had initially set up to image IC 1396 but changed to M45 after only 5x3min subs. Im pleased with the result but clearly need more subs to finish this image. Id like to also visit the elephant trunk nebula this winter with a higher resolution scope. ISO 640, dss, takahashi fsq 85 and canon 6d.
Since its been cloudy ive been busy trying out different processing techniques. Whats become apparent to me is that every person has a view on how a particular image looks best. Ive taken out some hot pixels from this image and changed the histogram. I prefer it to my original but some others have commented they prefer the original ?
For some time now I’ve been absolutely fascinated by the Pleiades! On some clear evenings ill set up my lunt 70mm bins on a tripod so my wife can have a look and it never fails to disappoint! I was checking the weather all week and finally on the Friday evening a clear night was forecast. I planned for Nick to join me with his 9″evo and we sat about imaging the Pleiades and the ring nebula. Nick got some lovely pictures of the ring which should follow shortly and i ended up with 12x3min exposures of M45. Ive still got some post processing to do with my image but I’ll change it over when complete.
Myself and Nick went to the SGL 2017 event in Lucksall for a weekend in October. The weather was very cloudy for most of the time but we had a very brief period on the Saturday evening where the cloud dissipated. This led to panic stations getting polar aligned and maximising the number of images. I had decided on the North American Nebula as it had just passed the meridian at the point of clearing and I didn’t want to footer around with a meridian flip half way through. I set up to do 30×8 min exposures but sadly the weather started to cloud over again after the first hour or so. I managed to capture 6×8 min subs which I stacked on DSS. I was using a Takahashi fsq 85 and modified canon 6d with an Idas D1 filter.