Author Archives: Neil Wyatt

About Neil Wyatt

Neil Wyatt is an environmentalist ecologist and a lifelong model maker – he had his first workshop at the age of about fourteen. He cut his teeth on Airfix models, but branched out into model boats and aircraft (that flew about as well as the boats). In his lathe thirties he discovered married life and a pile of ageing Model Engineer magazines and decided to take up the ‘ultimate hobby’ – making working things entirely from scratch – and bought a lathe. Whilst not claiming any exceptional talent, he gets great satisfaction from creating unusual working models and making and modifying tools and workshop equipment. His other hobbies include electronics, astronomy (especially astrophotography), playing guitar and bass and, when he has the energy, mountain biking. He somehow manages to combine being a environmental consultant with editing the magazine Model Engineers’ Workshop. Neil lives in Staffordshire with his wife, family and a collection of small to medium sized carnivorous mammals.

Veil Mosaic

When I posted my East Veil shot I said I was going to try and do a mosaic! Here it is. This is a jpg as even a compressed PNG is huge, seems a little over-saturated now I’ve uploaded it.

The Veil Nebula, a mosiac of two frames.
The Veil Nebula, a mosaic of two frames.

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Experiments in processing

I spent the last couple of weeks in South Wales and had a run of clear nights. I got a lot of data by staying up far too late…

Here are four images, processed in a combination of Pixinsight, Photoshop, Astra Image and Deep Sky Stacker trying to make use of the best bits/bits I understand in each!

Crescent Nebula, SHO
Crescent Nebula, SHO

 

Iris Nebula RGB
Iris Nebula RGB

 

Wizard Nebula, Hubble palette
Wizard Nebula, Hubble palette

 

Lobster and Bubble Nebulas
Lobster and Bubble Nebulas

Finally, it all comes together!

I am really p[leased with these two images, for once everything went smoothly, good polar alignment, good focus, good guiding and an hours subs for each filter. I think I need to learn more about the ‘Hubble Palette’ and then revisit the second version, but I’m happy for now!

 

North America and  Pelican Nebulas, narrowband HSO
North America and Pelican Nebulas, narrowband HSO
North America and  Pelican Nebulas, Hubble palette
North America and Pelican Nebulas, Hubble palette

Comet Neowise from Branston Water Park

This was a real processing challenge, it took me hours of trying to get DSS to stack it properly (100 4-second subs!) Had to take stars out of the comet stacked one and then managed to mask the stars in the star-stacked version.

In the end, the comet had hardly moved against the stars! I like this better than my long-exposure version done with a 400mm scope.

 

Comet Neowise at Branston Water Park
Comet Neowise from Branston Water Park

My New Equatorial Platform

This platform is mostly made from 3D printed parts, except obvious bits like plywood, screws, bearings and electronics.

It’s controlled by an Arduino Uno with an LCD keypad shield.

The final step will be finding some sky, polar aligning it and setting the tracking rates. Then hopefully some good planetary imaging!

M16 this summer.

This is the image I shared in tonight’s meeting, M16 the Eagle Nebula and cluster in Ha, with the ‘Pillars of Creation’ in the middle. Nearly 3 hours (34 5-minute exposures).

M16 Ha
M16 Ha

I also grabbed a luminance layer for the globular cluster M14 to use with my RGB data, and this Luminance only image of M11 to add to my ‘Messier Collection’.

This is classifies as an open cluster despite being quite compact, to me it looks more like a small but raggedy globular!

 

M11 The Wild Duck Cluster
M11 The Wild Duck Cluster