Swansea Astronomical Society Blog

Saturday, March 31, 2012

 

Afocal solar and lunar imaging plus two planets

Images of Mars and Saturn were taken through an 11” Celestron SCT and a DBK21 camera.
The image of Mars was taken through a 2.5 x Barlow and the image of Saturn was taken at prime focus:




Keith Davies


An Olympus Camedia c-480 zoom camera was used with a home made afocal rig and a 90mm refractor:






Afocal image of the Sun taken through a Bresser 90 mm spotting scope using an Olympus Camedia c-480 zoom camera.

AR1445 is clearly visible

Ken Shepherd

Friday, March 30, 2012

 

Supernova in M95

The image was made from 6 x 5 min and 1 x 4 min exposures of the barred spiral galaxy M95 with a William Optics ZS80II scope and a MX716 camera.

The image was captured on March 23.

Anne Startup
 

Lunar and Deep-sky drawings

The drawings were all made through a LX90 10 inch with Meade 3.3. reducer and a Mintron frame-integrating video camera as an electronic eyepiece.
Click on an image to get a larger view.




M95 with the supernova
















Jim Startup

Thursday, March 29, 2012

 

Drawing of NGC 2392

A Mintron frame-integrating video camera was placed at the prime focus of an 8" Newtonian and was used as an electronic eyepiece.
A drawing was made of NGC 2392, the Clown face nebula or the Eskimo nebula, a planetary nebula in Gemini.
The drawing was then photographed:


The photograph was then rendered as a negative to show how it appeared:


Chris Playle

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

 

The Sun in H-alpha and Ca K-line light

A H-alpha, Solarmax II, 60, BF15 scope with a DMK21 camera was used to capture the H-alpha data. A CaK PST was used to capture the Ca K-line data.
The whole disk was imaged at prime focus in 4 overlapping regions and then stiched together into a mosaic. The image has been colourised to represent H-alpha light.
Click on the image to get a larger view.


AR1445 was imaged using a 2.5 x Barlow in H-alpha and Ca K-line light.
The two images were registered and blended to show the features revealed in the chromosphere by both wavelengths simultaneously.

Reload the page to restart the animation below:



Steve Wainwright
 

Deep Sky delights

All exposures using Starlight Express MX716 and Astroart. Guided with DSI pro (which is brilliant) and PHD on a HEQ6 mount. All pics processed in Photoshop.

M1, 5 x 5 min exposures luminance rgb channels binned - 3 exposures. Taken on 25 March.


NGC 2903 in Leo, 10 x 1 min, taken before I drift aligned my mount to improve guiding. No colour info taken. Taken 21 March


Blackeye galaxy, 6 x 5 min, 3 x 5 min rgb. I also managed 10 min luminance but binned the matching darks by mistake so didn't include the longer exposures! I was impressed with the guiding. Taken 26 March


M67 taken last night. rgb 15 x 1 min for each channel but lost one or two as the mount started trailing - I forgot to adjust the weights on the west! It was better after.


Anne Startup

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

 

Afocal Deep Sky with a compact camera and a 10", F/4.8 Newtonian

A Samsung WB600 compact camera was set to ISO 1600 and 16s exposures.
It was attached to a Practika Afocal mount with a 40mm eyepiece, fitted with a light pollution filter. The assembly was attached to a 10", f/4.8 Newtonian and 40 x 16s exposures were made.

The resulting images were stacked in Registax 5. The resulting image was processed in Photoshop having been desaturated because the colour fidelity in the captured images was poor. The resulting image was denoised in Neat Image:

Substantial amounts of the Orion nebula have been revealed.
The 40 sub frames produced an increase in signal to noise ratio of 6.32.
This represented a total exposure of 10.7 minutes and could easily be improved upon with more sub frames.
This experiment demonstrates that with a compact camera with modest 'long' exposure capabilities, it is possible to make images of deep sky objects with an afocal configuration.
It should be noted that even cameras costing under GBP 50 can have exposures of up to 16s and ISO values of up to 3200.

Steve Wainwright
 

Mars last night, the Sun this morning and the conjunction this evening

Mars was imaged with a DBK21 camera with a 2.5 x Barlow and an 11 inch SCT:


A DMK31 camera was used with an 80mm refractor fitted with a Baader solar filter to image the Sun in white light:
With a 2x Barlow


With a 3x Barlow




A DBK21 camera fitted with a 3x Barlow was used with a H-alpha PST scope:




Keith Davies

A canon 350D DSLR was exposed at f/22 for 10s at ISO 400 to image the separating conjunction of Venus, Jupiter and the crescent Moon:


Steven Hill

Handheld Nikon Coolpix 7.1


Mavis Morgan
 

Experimental Deep-Sky imaging with an afocally mounted compact camera

A Samsung WB600 compact camera was used because it has the capacity to be set for up to 16s exposure and ISO values ranging from 80 t0 3200.
The camera was mounted on a Practica afocal rig with a 40mm eyepiece:


The rig was mounted on a 6" f/5 Newtonian:


A number of 16s exposures of the Orion Nebula at various ISO values were captured and stacked in Deep Sky Stacker.
Click on an image to get a larger view.

A number of observations can be made on the result:
The data were re-processed after dark-frame correction:















Two other deep sky objects were imaged, and both of them really needed considerably more frames to produce better images:

M13, globular cluster in Hercules

The large amount of chrominance noise due to the object being low in the sky in a light-polluted part of the sky would have been smoothed out with more images being captured and by waiting until the object rose into the higher, blacker sky.

M37, open cluster in Auriga


In conclusion: If large numbers of sub-frames are captured for any image, more will be obtained in the final image in terms of signal to noise ratio. This is a well established fact and the signal to noise ratio increases as the square root of the number of sub-frames used.
The technique shows promise for any compact camera that is capable of 'long' exposures and relatively high ISO values, if mounted on a fast telescope.

Steve Wainwright
 

March 26 Moon, Venus, Jupiter conjunction

Click on an image to get a larger view.
This image of the conjunction was captured with a Vivitar T027 compact camera:


Colin Elphick

A tripod mounted Fuji Finepix 5600 camera was used to capture these two conjunction images:




Ken and Margaret Shepherd

With a handheld Nikon Coolpix 7.1

The three components of the conjunction traced out light trails in the sky with the camera movement.

Mavis Morgan

A tripod mounted Sony Cybershot 12.1 was set to maximum zoom and automatic exposure to obtain this image:


Colin and Sue Elward

A tripod mounted Pentax K-x DSLR was used to capture the conjunction:


Steve Wainwright

From a light polluted site with a Fuji Finepix S 4080.
ISO was 1600, time was 1/4s
Focal length of 4mm; aperture 3.26, f/3.1


Focal length of 4mm; aperture 3.26, f/3.1


20mm focal length, aperture 3.26, f/5.4


Focal length aperture 3.26, f/4.9

The Earthshine is clearly visible in this image

Stephen Morris

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