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White Light Sun168 viewsSunspot AR2403 is almost 200,000 km long and is easily visible in this image taken from Maryland on 8/25/2015 using an Orion ED80T Triplet refractor and a color Atik 414ex camera. The telescope was equipped with a white light filter and the exposure was set to 0.001 sec. Light was further reduced by using a Moon filter in fromt of the camera. Great shot Chuck!Aug 25, 2015
The Soul Nebula 149 viewsThe emission nebula Sharpless 2-199 and the open cluster IC 1848 in the constellation Cassiopeia are commonly referred to as the soul nebula. The emission nebula is a massive star-forming region. The image was a total combined exposure of 8 hr 45 min taken over 6 nights (Aug and Oct 2014) in Mayhill, NM (35 x 900 sec lights at -20 degrees, dithered; 35 darks, 128 bias, 128 flats); Takahashi Epsilon 180 f/2.8 astrograph; Paramount ME; SBIG STF 8300c; guided with a ST-i camera and an Astro-Physics/Baader guider system; acquisition with MaxIm DL 6; Images calibrated, aligned, integrated, and processed in PixInsight 1.8.4 using a Synthetic Luminance and Multiscale Processing. Aug 25, 2015
The Flaming Star Nebula 150 viewsThe Flaming Star Nebula, IC 405 or Caldwell 31, is found in the constellation Auriga. IC 405 is both an emission and reflection nebula that is associated with the star AE Aurigae. The image was taken using a Takahashi Epsilon 130D f/3.3 Astrograph and a SBIG STF8300c CCD camera (Paramount ME) on the nights of Nov 6th, 8th, 9th, 2013 in Mayhill, NM. Total integration time was 5 hrs 40 min (34 x 10 min lights at -20 degrees C; 20 darks; 64 lights; 64 bias). Sub-frames were calibrated, registered, integrated, and processed in PixInsight Ripley (x64). Aug 08, 2015
The Sun210 viewsThis image was taken from Alamogordo, NM on 8/8/2015 at 10:49AM MT using a Coronado 90mm SolarMax II telescope and Imaging Source 41AU02 monochrome camera. 688 images were stacked using Registax and a light LR deconvolution was performed before color added using Photoshop. Sunspot AR2396 is seen in the image and has grown by 50% in the last day.Aug 08, 2015
M 45 and associated Nebulosity311 viewsMessier 45, commonly known as the Pleiades, is an open cluster found in the constellation Taurus. Messier 45 is surrounded by a dusty reflection nebula, which accounts for its blue coloration, along with some pinkish-red coloration due to an ionized gas component. The small 17.3 magnitude galaxy PGC 13696 can be seen to the right of the star Electra (17 Tau), which is the bright star to the right of center.
The data was previously obtained on the nights of November 1st, 2nd, and 3rd, 2013 with a OSC SBIG STF-8300c camera and Takahashi E-130D f/3.3 Astrograph on a Paramount (Mayhill, NM). Total integration time was 4 hr 20 min (26 x 10 min lights @ -20 degrees C; 20 darks; 64 flats, 64 bias). Calibrated, registered, integrated, and processed in PixInsight
Some comments on processing: The calibrated, registered, and integrated OSC image was duplicated and the R, G, and B channels extracted. The R, G, and B channels were combined with the Integration Tool to prepare a synthetic luminance (SynL). Dynamic Background Extraction ( DBE) and Deconvolution applied to the SynL image. DBE, Background Neutralization, and Color Calibration was applied to the original RGB image. Both the RGB and SynL images were stretched (Masked Stretch tool). The luminance (“lightness” using L*a*b*) was extracted from the RGB image and the Linear Fit tool was used to match the stretch of the luminance to the SynL channel (SynL as reference). The fitted luminance was added back to the RGB image using the Channel Combination tool in L*a*b* mode. The SynLRGB image was made using LRGB Combine tool. Further processing included noise reduction, multiscale processing to bring out faint structure, color saturation, sharpening, and contrast enhancement.
Jul 14, 2015
Open Clusters M 46, M47, and NGC 2423 in Puppis147 viewsThe open clusters Messier 46, Messier 47, and NGC 2423 are found in the constellation Puppis embedded in a rich field of Milky Way stars. The small planetary nebula NGC 2438 that appears to be in M 46 is actually not associated with the cluster. M 46 was discovered by Messier in 1771. Smyth describes it as a “A noble, but rather loose assemblage of stars” (Smyth and Chambers, A Cycle of Celestial Objects, 2nd Edition, 1881, Oxford) whereas Webb describes it as a “Beautiful circular cloud of small stars” (Webb, Celestial Objects for Common Telescopes, 4th Ed, 1881, Longmans, Green, and Co ). William Herschel observed the small planetary nebula NGC 2438 in 1786. M 47 was also discovered by Messier in 1771 but not intermediately attributed to Messier due to a mathematical mistake in his coordinates. The cluster was described by Smyth as “a very splendid field of of large and small stars” (under the entry 38 H VIII) and Webb as a “Grand broad group, visible to the naked eye”. This wide field picture was taken with a Takahashi FSQ106ED with focal reducer (f/3.6), Canon 60Da DSLR camera (2.32 arcsec/pixel), and an Astro-Physics 1200 mount on 15 March 2015 in Mayhill, NM.. Total exposure of 1 hour (4 x 15 min lights, dithered; 12 darks; 128 bias; 64 flats); Baader/Astro-Physics guider system; Image acquisition with MaxIm DL; Calibration, alignment, integration, and image processing with PixInsight 21, 2015
NGC 6995 and NGC 6992 (The Eastern Veil Nebula)247 viewsNGC 6995 / NGC 6992 (Eastern Veil Nebula) form part of the Cygnus loop a supernova remnant in the constellation of Cygnus. Other objects that form part of the Cygnus loop, not visible in this image, are NGC 6960 and NGC 6979. The cloud of ionized gas and dust covers an area of 3 degrees (around 6 times the size of the full moon) and continues to expand. The image consist of 44 x 300sec exposures taken with a QHY10 CCD camera and Orion 80mm refractor mounted on a Celestron CGEM mount.Jun 15, 2015
Saturn: The Bringer of Old Age283 viewsIn the ancient Roman myths Saturn was the god of agriculture, Greeks called Saturn Cronus - this is where we get the idea of Father Time. Saturn takes 29.5 years to orbit the Sun - thereby making it the slowest moving of the visible planets in the night sky. Saturn was 8.976 AU (~830 million miles) distant in this image. Image taken from Alamogordo NM with a Celestron C9.25 at f30 using an Imaging Source 21AU618 color camera and stacked with Registax 5.1 (3206 images) and L-R deconvolution using Astra Image 3.0 SI.May 31, 2015
Iris Nebula (NGC 7023/C4)281 viewsNGC 7023 and Caldwell 4, aka the Iris Nebula, is a reflection nebula in the constellation of Cepheus. The dust in the nebula is illuminated by the magnitude +7 star SAO 19158. The image consist of 66 x 300sec images taken with a Explore Scientific 127mm refractor, Canon 60Da, and a Celestron CGEM mount. Stacked with Nebulosity 4 and processed in PhotoShop CS6May 27, 2015
Sh2-240 Supernova Remnant in Taurus151 viewsImaged is the large supernova remnant Sharpless 2-240 in the constellation Taurus. The complex filamentary structure leads to it's common name, the Spaghetti Nebula. Field of view of the image is 2.12 x 3.21 degrees that captures only part of the nebula, which is approximately 3 degrees. Emission of the nebula is believed to be due to the shock wave of the expanding gas. Image was captured through a Takahashi FSQ 106ED with focal reducer (f/3.6 fl =385mm) and a Canon 60Da DSLR on an Astro-Physics 1200 mount; 23rd and 27th Oct 2014 (20 x 900 sec lights @-20 degrees, dithered; 35 darks; 126 flats; 128 bias; Software: SkyX, MaxIm DL 6, processed in PixInsight May 22, 2015
The Double Cluster in Perseus166 viewsThe Double Cluster in Perseus, NGC 869 and NGC 884, are bright (naked-eye visible as a hazy patch) relatively young open clusters. Each cluster contains about 300 stars, many of which are blue-white supergiants. Image is a total of 5 hours combined exposure (20 x 900 sec lights, -20 degrees C; 35 darks; 126 flats; 128 bias) taken with an SBIG STF8300c camera; Takahashi Epsilon 180 f/2.8 astrograph; Astro-Physics 1200 mount; Image acquisition with MaxIm DL 6; processed with PixInsight Apr 05, 2015
Messier 78 and neighbors287 viewsMessier 78 is a diffuse reflection nebula located in the constellation of Orion. The starlight bounces off the dust particles in the nebula which create the bright reflection areas. The dark area that separates M78 from NGC 2067 consist of obscuring dust that blocks the light from background stars. The image consist of over 10 hours of data (128 x 5min exposures) taken with a Canon 60Da camera, TPO RC telescope on a Celestron CGEM mount. Stacked with nebulosity and processed with Photo Shop CS6. Apr 01, 2015
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