Sky Watcher Equinox Pro 80mm OTA + Tele Vue TRF-2008 field flattener + QHY10 camera & William Optics 66mm OTQ with T7C guide camera + TS OAG/flip mirror on HEQ5 Pro & focus points on both scopes with these cameras 20/9/2019:
I added my Tele Vue TRF-2008 Reducer-flattener into the imaging train for my QHY10 camera on my Sky Watcher Equinox Pro 80mm telescope today. As first step, I decided to try focusing it during the day. This needed me to reduce the aperture by 70% with aperture mask as well using minimum 1/10000 second exposure setting in Nebulosity 4 for the camera and also aim as the darkest part of the daytime garden.
Following image shows bottom garden in focus with QHY10 only attached to telescope:
In the following image, I added in my Tele Vue TRF-2008 Reducer-flattener and TS Optics off axis guider/flip mirror together into the imaging train – as you can see I could not obtain focus even when the focuser was fully racked in as far as it would go (needed to go in not out – could see focus improve as I did so):
Finally, in this image, you can see that I obtained focus with the Tele Vue TRF-2008 Reducer-flattener and QHY10 but without the TS Optics off axis guider/flip mirror, so sadly I won’t be able to use the TS OAG/FM with the TRF-2008 and my QHY10:
Focus was achieved at the end of the garden with QHY10 and Tele Vue TRF-2008 Reducer-flattener with a setting of 17mm on the focus tube of the Equinox 80mm OTA. Note 35mm of T2-adapters were used as spacer between the TRF-2008 and QHY10 as advised in the TRF-2008 manual.
Next step is to try focusing at night and find alternative way of finding my objects than the TS OAG/FM as I am keen to use the TRF-2008.
As you can see from screenshot below, this is working although I am not sure why the temperature seems to be so low today…
As I watched it dropped even further – see below – this shows temperature just as I changed set point from -10 C to +5 C but has not had any chance to go up yet. Note I did not set it to – 19.5 C (never set it below -10 C today) !! Last night temperature also seemed but haywire although previous occasion I was outside it reflected the set point quite well.
Temperature correctly went to 5 C
I don’t think there is any problem – when I left it long enough it did seem to stabilise close to set temperature although with big fluctuation past set points before coming back and settling (in this case went up to 15 C before coming back to 5.6 C – I then set it to -10 C again and this time it went down to -11.7 C which in past I have noticed is where it seems to go when I set -10 C on TEC in Nebulosity 4).
When I watched it further, temperature went up to -3.1 C. Perhaps it is too much to ask camera to cool to -10 C and stay there in relatively hot day time? Current temperature in Lichfield 15 C.
Mind you then it did this…..
I have noticed that once it has cooled itself right down, if I then change the set temperature to higher temperature, it can take a long time to get there – I guess because the body of the camera is very cold and there is no active heating element.
After my initial successes, tonight was a total disaster.
My HEQ5 Pro refused to align properly – even though it said it had successful alignment it sent the scope all over the sky when I did a GOTO. I ended up factory resetting it and this improved things…..but not enough to find Andromeda Galaxy or M81/M82 with GOTO. Ended up manually star-hopping to them.
My Sky Watcher Equinox Pro focuser slips too much – to such an extent that it keeps losing focus. I will need to ask Lee to look at it. I ended up giving up on it and changing to my Sky Watcher DS Pro 72mm.
This meant I had to re-focus the scope – my one success tonight was the first successful use of a Bahtinov Mask.
However this means that the TS Flip Mirror/OAG won’t obtain focus in both camera and eyepiece at same time – I need a shorter adapter TS Flip mirror to scope to create more back focus behind it. So tonight I used the scope with the finder eyepiece out of focus. Camera was in focus though.
Once I got all working and found M31 and was ready to image, suddenly the QHY10 was no longer recognised by Nebulosity and refused to reconnect even after switching everything off and on. It had been working all night.
Then clouds rolled in and stopped play.
Single frame 60 second image QHY10/Sky Watcher Equinox Pro 80mm/HEQ5 Pro.
OK – not great but it is my first one!
All images are PNG files.
Applying curves in GIMP:
Removing light pollution in GIMP:
See how Roger improved this image by clicking on this post:
It is amazing what instructions you can find on YouTube and Google! I downloaded DeepSkyStacker and stacked 7 images of M101 I took last night to create single image with equivalent exposure of 40 minutes and then carried out the instructions at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FsvX48S807Q to remove light pollution – results were amazing as you can see below!
(All images below are TIFF files)
This post follows from my previous post & is using images from that session:
I had taken 7 images of M101 “subs” last night – in my previous post I only presented a single frame. Today I stacked all 7 in DeepSkyStacker (http://deepskystacker.free.fr/english/index.html) to create single image equivalent total 40 minutes exposure (below):
The following image is my first iteration of applying curves in GIMP:
I then applied curves again to above image each time narrowing down the top and bottom so that it bridged the data seen on the histogram:
Another iteration of curves:
Now when I looked at the histogram the edges of the curves touched the data both sides:
I used despeckle with standard settings in GIMP on above image to get following image:
I now followed the instructions at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FsvX48S807Q to remove light pollution.
The first step was to create a copy of the layer and on this copy I used despeckle with largest radius and maximum black and white points to remove stars, then used the clone tool to remove the two galaxies as best I could to create a layer showing image of the background light pollution.
I then used subtract on the layers to remove this light pollution layer from the original image to give following incredible image (seems incredible to me that this can be done so easily):