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Skywatcher
09-01-2011, 10:12 AM
Well due to a combination of multiple major life events, bad weather, other interests and exhaustion I haven't been out with the scope in anger for over a year now. To be honest I was wondering if I ever would again.

Anyway the kids had buoyed me to have another crack mainly as a result of the BBC series and there was that happy confluence of a clear forecast, no moon and weekend that happens so very rarely.

So I gave it a pop.

1st part of the evening was with the big scope and we went out and looked at Jupiter without its southern belt, the setting crescent moon, the pliedes, the andromeda galaxy and alibreo and then whilst the kids were going through bed routine I changed for the imaging scope and let it cool down and let the moon set.

What to image? well After much thought and many choices I decided to plump for a guided image of the orion nebula - never taken long exposures on this before, only taken 90 second shots of this and I wanted to get one that showed some more of the dust that circles and swirls around the famous nebulas.

I was quickly reminded of why I got frustrated with the hobby as just as I had got it all set up - alignment of the mount and the scope, focus ( takes about 20 minutes) framing and the setting up of the guide scope and camera - the clouds rolled in

I had wanted to get about 5 hours worth of data for this as I have seen some might impressive results with my setup by others with this amount of data - but it just wasn't to be

So over the 5 hours of imaging time I had ( as the constellation goes behind the house at 1 am) I only managed 2 hours, and that wasn't often in large chunks.

Anyway I'm reasonably pleased with the results - I can always add another nights data at some point but its achieved the most important goal which was to get me back into this and to get all the equipment back up and working again.

ISO800 and a stack of 1 minute , 2 minute and 8 minute exposures

This is probably the only deep sky object you can actually overexpose in the night sky as the core is so 'bright' which is why I added in the shorted exposures, you lose the trapezium in this picture with those 4 newborn stars but as I said the intention was all the dust in this one.

Glad I went for this rather than the Seagull or the Jellyfish nebulas , sorry that its yet another shot of the same object....

Hopefully more to come over the coming weeks.

http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5248/5338149643_f054c7fdd2_z.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/48304094@N08/5338149643/)
Orion Nebulas January 2011 (http://www.flickr.com/photos/48304094@N08/5338149643/) by Sidleydoc (http://www.flickr.com/people/48304094@N08/), on Flickr

Skywatcher
09-01-2011, 11:01 AM
Alternative process..... more dust less detail
http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5161/5338230847_aa3fca1b06_z.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/48304094@N08/5338230847/)
Alternate orion 2011 process (http://www.flickr.com/photos/48304094@N08/5338230847/) by Sidleydoc (http://www.flickr.com/people/48304094@N08/), on Flickr

Deafjeff
09-01-2011, 11:23 AM
Amazing!!!!! :jawdrop: would love to have one to one lesson with you!

catrancher
09-01-2011, 01:33 PM
Spectacular Chris!

Same object or not, it's still stunning. :yes:

Tom (:macwave:... can't stay awake that late!)

foreverducky
09-01-2011, 01:40 PM
That's amazing!

I'm in awe of you and your skills!

Skywatcher
09-01-2011, 04:29 PM
Thank you, you are all very kind :)

ukwdwnut
09-01-2011, 07:05 PM
absolutely stunning photos chris....ive sure missed those...we should have a space night at yours following a bbq during the day :wink: :lol:

tb2830
09-01-2011, 07:14 PM
fantastic pictures:yes:

mumof2
09-01-2011, 09:51 PM
:jawdrop:

I don't know what to say....it's amazing!! :yes:

Tink
10-01-2011, 12:03 AM
It looks like a heart, a glorious, forever heart.

mumof2
10-01-2011, 08:20 AM
It looks like a heart, a glorious, forever heart.


i thought so too Tink!

josh.p.
10-01-2011, 06:45 PM
:thud: That is absolutely amazing!! These photos never cease to take my breath away! I'd love to see a picture of your camera and telescope all set up!

Skywatcher
10-01-2011, 09:46 PM
thank you all :) Tink it does look like a heart, Lisa said the same

next time I'm all set up Josh I will do just that for you buddy, MacBook pro and all

Skywatcher
14-01-2011, 08:53 AM
Final process done last night, lost some of the dust but preserved more detail in the core and the Bright star to the bottom rioght of the main nebula turns out to be a double, completely swamped by the previous processing

Think this is my favourite processing but shame to have lost that extra dust

Playing with PSE9 that I got for Christmas, layer masking and feathering etc etc

Anyway I'm done with this one now - roll on another clear dark night ( at a weekend) - so July it is then ;)

http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5008/5352922634_ff3d5fbf06_z.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/48304094@N08/5352922634/)
Orion Reprocess to try and rescue Core (http://www.flickr.com/photos/48304094@N08/5352922634/) by Sidleydoc (http://www.flickr.com/people/48304094@N08/), on Flickr

ukwdwnut
14-01-2011, 01:55 PM
looks awesome really chris. thx for sharing:)....july???

Skywatcher
14-01-2011, 03:13 PM
:lol: being facetious, its very rare to get a dark, clear, moisture free, windless night with good visability - leave alone one that happens at a weekend or when i haven't got other things to do

Oh and it needs to do all those things for at least 6 hours

.... and with something interesting in the sky to image

Dawn
14-01-2011, 04:53 PM
I've got telescope time booked Sunday for somewhere in New Mexico. :mental:

Skywatcher
14-01-2011, 10:43 PM
Epic, please let me know how it goes, lots of cracking southern sky objects, tarantula nebula is my dream :yes:

Beccaberry
18-01-2011, 02:20 AM
Stunning. For a moment, I couldn't breathe just looking at it. Simply stunning.

Skywatcher
18-01-2011, 08:47 AM
You are all most kind :)

Beccaberry
18-01-2011, 03:58 PM
I hope you don't mind, but it's my current wallpaper on my new iPad ;)

josh.p.
18-01-2011, 10:37 PM
I hope you don't mind, but it's my current wallpaper on my new iPad ;)
:mental:

buzzchamp
19-01-2011, 11:13 AM
WOW what does someone need to be able to get pictures like that please?

Skywatcher
19-01-2011, 03:18 PM
Bllimey Becca I don't mind at all I am deeply deeply honoured, there are much better examples online if you google them :)

I've found tat iPad wallpapers never look that good when you hold them in portrait especially if you have it just right in landscape and vice versa the become a little soft when you twist them

Thanks for the comment buzzchamp, it aint cheap my friend. A DSLR, a laptop, 2 telescopes a guiding camera, a computerised equatorial mount, a focal reducer, a light pollution filter, a remote shutetr cable, a mains powered bettery for the DSLR - and hardest of all 5 hours of clear dark skies ;)