Astrophotography – Landscape

Noctilucent clouds galore!

Ean Ean and I viewed an amazing display of noctilucent clouds which was seen best out of our bedroom window (I feel like Roger although I did have window open) in the centre of Lichfield today at 3:30am. The pictures below were taken with either my Samsung S7 phone or Sony A350 DSLR. It was morning twilight and getting quite bright sky in the west just before sunrise with Belt of Venus visible.the clouds extended from approx. 15-60 degrees altitude – over massive area from almost direct north to nearly direct west.

I need to thank Damian who called Ean Ean and myself to make us aware of this incredible display and allowed us to see our first good noctilucent clouds.

Incredibly exciting!

Andy






Possible noctilucent clouds Whittington 28/6/2018

I think I may have seen noctilicent clouds on my way home from working at Robert Peel Hospital tonight. As I was driving towards Whittington, I saw this display of almost fluorescent blue shown on the photo below. Is this noctilucent clouds? Let me know what you think. Photo taken at 23:45 British Summer Time. Roughly 52 degrees North latitude. UK.

Andy

Earth shadow

Click on the IMG_8691 link below to see a timelapse video I took in Mauritius recently. You can see the earth shadow creeping up the sky. The sky below the line actually went a beautiful deep blue, which doesn’t really come across in the video

Towards the end of the video, the sun obviously went behind an obstruction and you can see a big shadow being cast on the sky at the top left hand corner of the screen. It was amazing in real life

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The video is in .MOV (Quicktime). If you can’t view it and want it in a different format, let me know

 

Cheers

Moon, Jupiter and Venus over Lichfield, and unsuccessful attempts to observe noctilucent clouds 25-27/6/2018

Damian and I went out to see if we could observe some noctilucent cloud displays 25th and 26th and I went alone 27th June. In all cases no success but we did see Jupiter and Venus and a nearly full Moon.

Andy

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Belt of Venus from Lichfield

Whilst waiting to see if noctilucent clouds appeared I captured this photo of the Belt of Venus.

The Belt of Venus, Venus’s Girdle, or antitwilight arch is an atmospheric phenomenon visible shortly before sunrise or after sunset, during civil twilight, when a pinkish glow extending roughly 10–20° above the horizon surrounds the observer. The planet Venus, when visible, is typically located in the Belt of Venus.

In the photo below from Lichfield tonight, the pink of the Belt of Venus can be seen across the tops of the trees. Venus itself can be seen peaking above the trees on the left.

Andy

Noctilucent Clouds from Steethay!

Sunday 24th June.

Observed around 11.10pm looking North (out of my front office window) – North North West (so just to the right (East) of the earlier solar pillar.

jpegs straight from camera, no processing. Taken between 11.20 – 11.40pm

Really tricky to stop the street light flare hitting the lens…

Nikon D3 (full frame) and Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8 lens.

All ISO 200, f/2.8, 70mm focal length and between 2-3 second exposures.

Towards the end of this run I could not see the NCL’s as they had grown too faint.

For orientation: the same picture above, but with annotations


 

Damian

Solar Pillar – Sunday 24th June 2018

Three jpegs straight out of the camera.

Nikon D7000 (APS-C/DX) Nikon 70-200 f/2.8 VRII + 1.4x TC

ISO 100, 1/160 sec, f/5, focal length 100mm (150mm in 35mm terms)

9.47pm

 

ISO 100, 1/100 sec, f/5, focal length 100mm (150mm in 35mm terms)

9.56pm

 

ISO 100, 1/50 sec, f/5, focal length 100mm (150mm in 35mm terms)

10.05pm

 

Damian

Solar Observing and Evening Treats!

Sunday 24th June, a chance to get out and do some solar observing – can’t leave it all to Nick and Roger after all !

I double checked my usual sites to see what was happening on the sun, they suggested enough to warrant pulling all the gear out.

http://halpha.nso.edu (GONG)

http://www.spaceweather.com

https://sohowww.nascom.nasa.gov

Credit: SOHO (NASA/ESA)

 

Credit: SDO/HMI

 

Invited the big ‘A’ to join me, he duly did after 2.15 as we set up the gear.

Forecast on ‘Clear Outside’ app was correct, indicating 90+% high cloud cover…

This did have a detrimental effect on the observing to some degree, especially in my longer focal length scope, but you have to take the opportunities when they present themselves!

We both took the chance to do some sketching and it was good to see that Andy’s Calcium Quark actually worked – an “enhance white light” view, being my description.

Copyright: GONG/NSO/AURA/NSF.

We were more than pleased with our day as Andy packed up after 5, me not long after…

But the day wasn’t finished…

Looked out my North facing front office window to be greeted with a Solar Pillar – about 9.30pm.

Took a quick snap with the iPhone, then rang Andy. He seemed a bit perplexed at first for my call and a ‘Light Pillar’, but I urged him to go outside, then put the phone down pretty abruptly and went to grab a ‘proper’ camera.

iPhone image 9.34pm:

And again at 10.07pm

Even later into the evening, I spotted roughly in the same position what I thought could be noctilucent clouds… never seen them before.

Having left my tripod at work, I quickly grabbed the GorillaPod and took a 3 sec exposure – ‘NCL’ confirmed !

Texted Andy… no reply…

Those images will appear in a new thread!

 

Damian