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!


M42 (The Great Nebula in Orion)   [obsolete]

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

Image Details:

Camera: Mofidied Canon Rebel XT (350D): Hutech Type I Filter Replacement
Mount: Celestron AS-GT
Scope: Orion ED80 (80mm f/7.5 APO Refractor)
Configuration: Focal Reduced
Additional Optics: William Optics 2" APO 0.8x Reducer/Field Flattener
Filter: None
Effective Focal Length: 480mm
Effective Focal Ratio: f/6
Exposure: 31 x 4min @ ISO 400 (nebula), 11 x 30sec @ ISO 400 (core/trapezium)
Total Exposure: 2hrs, 9min
Date: 2/20/2006 7:53:30 PM PST (start)
Location: Saratoga, CA, USA
Acquisition: DSLRfocus
Focus: DSLRFocus
Dithering: GADFly 1.0.5
Guiding: GuideDog via Philips ToUcam Pro II (840k) through Orion ST80 w/ Celestron 2x "Kit" Barlow


  • IRIS: Dark subtraction, registration, gradient removal
  • JimP: Flat field, Kappa-Sigma Stacking, White balance, ASINH stretching
  • Photoshop: Compositing, Levels, cropping, JPG conversion

Image Description:

This is my annual attempt at the sword region of Orion, featuring M42. I wasn't crazy with last year's attempt and, of course, this ancient one, so I gave it a run with the new focal reducer. This one is cleaner and deeper than the previous two, the William Optics focal reducer matching up well with the ED80. Mouse-over the image above to see the annotations, and see the links to the older images for more information about this target. A higher-resolution image is also available. North is left.