SaratogaSkies Jim Solomon's Astropics

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December: Test shots with new scopes/mounts

Dec 21: TMB 80/480 Arrives!

Dec 3: AP1200 Arrives!

Nov 30: TMB 152/1200 Arrives!

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M45 (The Pleiades)

Click to see high-res version.

Image Details:

Camera: Canon Digital Rebel (300D)
Mount: Celestron AS-GT
Scope: Orion ED80 (80mm f/7.5 APO Refractor)
Configuration: Focal Reduced
Additional Optics: Celestron F/6.3 Reducer/Corrector (0.63x)
Filter: None
Effective Focal Length: 420mm
Effective Focal Ratio: f/5.2
Exposure: 22 x 4min @ ISO 400
Total Exposure: 1hrs, 28min
Date: 1/29/2005, 8:11pm (start)
Location: Saratoga, CA, USA
Acquisition: DSLRfocus
Focus: DSLRFocus
Dithering: Manual
Guiding: GuideDog via Philips ToUcam Pro II (840k) through Orion ST80 w/ Celestron 2x "Kit" Barlow

Processing:

  • IRIS: Dark subtraction, flat field, registration, normalized Kappa-Sigma stacking, background fit
  • Photoshop: Levels, image size, JPG conversion

Image Description:

This is the famous open cluster M45 (The Pleiades) in the constellation of Taurus. M45 is very visible to the naked eye and looks spectacular in binoculars. The blue reflection nebula is NGC 1432, aka, the Maia Nebula. This is my first image with the Orion ED80 and I'm pretty pleased with it. Unlike the ST80, the ED80 is an apochromatic refractor and doesn't suffer from "ugly purple halo around bright stars" syndrome. Transparency was only average when this was shot but the seeing was quite good. North is up.

 
M1 (Crab Nebula)
SaratogaSkies Jim Solomon's Astropics

Search

Latest news

December: Test shots with new scopes/mounts

Dec 21: TMB 80/480 Arrives!

Dec 3: AP1200 Arrives!

Nov 30: TMB 152/1200 Arrives!

Links:

M1 (Crab Nebula)

Mouse-over to see annotations. (Requires Javascript) Click to see high-res version.

Image Details:

Camera: SBIG ST-2000XM
Mount: Astro-Physics 1200GTO
Scope: TMB 152/1200 APO Refractor
Configuration: Prime Focus
Additional Optics: n/a (Prime)
Filter: Astrodon SII, Hα, OIII 6nm Filters
Effective Focal Length: 1200mm
Effective Focal Ratio: f/7.9
Exposure: {1 Hα, 1 OIII, 1 SII} × 32min @ -30°C
Total Exposure: 1hrs, 36min
Date: 1/28/2008 11:49 PM PST (Start)
Location: Saratoga, CA, USA
Acquisition: CCDSoft
Focus: FocusMax
Dithering: None
Guiding: Self Guided

Processing:

  • IRIS: Dark subtraction, registration, White balance, ASINH stretching, Richardson-Lucy Deconvolution
  • Photoshop: Cropping, JPG conversion

Image Description:

This is M1, aka, the “Crab Nebula”, a Supernova Remnant in the constellation of Taurus. This is First Light after a repair and cleaning of my ST-2000XM camera, and also First Light for my new motorized, electronic, focuser attachment for the TMB 152/1200's FeatherTouch FT3545 focuser. Along with FocusMax, a freeware focusing software package, the electronic focuser allows one to absolutely NAIL the focus every time. After fighting some USB hardware problems, I managed to capture some narrowband exposures of this target. Mousing off the image reveals a “Hubble Palette” narrowband image, with R:G:B = SII:Hα:OIII. Mouse-over the image to see a pseudo-“True Color” image, in which those narrowband emission lines are mapped to their approximate color as seen by human vision. Specifically, the red SII and Hα wavelengths are mapped to red, and the aqua (blue-green) OIII wavelength is mapped to both green and blue. Also, a smidge of Hα is added into blue to simulate the Hβ wavelength. Compare the stunning amount of detail in this narrowband image, and especially the pseudo-true-color image, with that in this older true color image, though, of course, the latter was captured with much more modest equipment. A higher resolution image is also available. North is up.