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Horse head and Flame Nebulae with SVR90T and H-Alpha Filter

Date: 01.23.2011 (last quarter moon)

Location: San Bruno, CA

Telescope: Stellarvue SVR 90T with Televue x0.8 reducer on Takahashi NJP-Z Mount

Camera: Qhy9 CCD with Astronomik HAlpha 12nm Filter

This is a stacking of 11 exposures of 8minutes.  Even with the short focal ration (f/d 5.6) obtained with the televue reducer, I had to apply 2×2 Binning and take a fair amount of exposure to get details in the Nebula.

The H-Alpha filter does wonder to combat light pollution, even though the FWHM of this filter is not very narrow (12 nanometers).

To capture this picture, I used the software Logme in to monitor the imaging session from the comfort of my living room…

Configuration:

  • Imaging setting outside, connected to my Toshiba Netbook, accessing the Network from a Wireless connexion. The Netbook controls the Qhy9 camera, the Orion autoguider, and the Takahashi NJP-Z mount (Ascom driver).
  • My Laptop, in the living room, allowing remote access to the Netbook using the LogmeIn software.

With long imaging session, getting remote access allows me to check if nothing goes wrong [ issue with tracking, clouds, etc] – without having to check every 20 minutes outside!

Here is a screenshot of the log me in screen with remote access to the Netbook controlling the imaging set up:

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Crab Nebula with C9.25 – Jan 2011

Location: San Bruno, CA

Telescope: Celestron 9.25 with F/d 6.3 reducer on Takahashi NJP-Z Mount

Camera: Qhy8 CCD with Astronomik CLS CCD Filter

This is the result of 16 exposures of 330 sec. The Celestron C9.25 is really a good choice for planetary nebula given its relatively long focal length, and its large aperture.

I find also that many planetary nebula are a nice target when on a light polluted site, since they have a relatively high surface brightness.

What is more important here is to have a night with good seeing conditions,  very good tracking, take multiple shots, and stack!

Software: Maxim DL5, Photoshop CS4, Nik Sharpener

This is a crop of the previous image, showing more details in the Nebula dendrils.

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Just starting

Just created this blog. Obviously it is about Astronomy. I have an Orion 102ED  scope and a Celestron 9″1/4 scope. I am new in Astrophotography and trying out different techniques … I’ll post what I am trying and what works / what does not work…

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