Space and The wonders/mysteries of The Universe

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Post by Nagual on Tue Aug 27, 2019 11:50 am

Lancebloke wrote:Was doing a bit of telescoping last night.

For anyone that thinks this stuff is hard to do, I have a relatively cheap telescope (about £175) and a couple of eye pieces (about another £50) and last night I could see Jupiter, some of the more defined cloud bands, 3 if its moons and Saturn with it rings very clearly... all from a back garden with the brightest fucking light next door!

It's pretty incredible to see for yourself and would highly recommend!!!

Other highlights I have found so far (not last night) include the Orion nebula, the Pleiades star cluster and the faint galactic bubble of the Andromeda galaxy!!!

Many moons ago I bought a kit for my g/f. Once we found a nice dark spot it was amazing. Seeing Saturn's rings and moons was really breathtaking. Looking at the moon's surface at 300 magnification was challenging as it moves so fast but seeing the various mountains and craters was incredible.

And an incredibly stupid thing I once did while stationed in Cyprus was to look through a massive set of binoculars. Weighing in at around 25+kg they were mounted on a very sturdy tripod. What was so stupid? Well, these were for looking at things like defensive fortifications and the likes along the Turkish border... not for suddenly thinking 'what does the sun look like?'. Luckily at that time of day the sun had dropped towards the horizon (increased atmospheric filtering) and it looked amazing. Solar flares rippling along the edges, some bigger than others. Don't try this, I was stupid and very very lucky.

Space is amazing, looking at it is inspiring and humbling. Hope you have fun Lance.
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Post by halfwise on Tue Aug 27, 2019 1:41 pm

"What does the sun look like?" Laughing

Probably not so stupid as I doubt you would have thought of it unless the sun was low and red.

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Post by Pettytyrant101 on Tue Aug 27, 2019 2:08 pm

Probably not so stupid as I doubt you would have thought of it unless the sun was low and red.- Halfy

{{Well as I knew Nagual back in those days too I'm going with lucky!! Very Happy }}

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Post by halfwise on Tue Aug 27, 2019 3:48 pm

I must bow to superior knowledge, as it does align with his own self evaluation of the incident.

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Post by Nagual on Wed Aug 28, 2019 2:00 pm

I think the truth is somewhere in between, I know I have never considered looking at the sunny when it's burning your retinas out from just glancing at it, not enough atmosphere between us but come evening time with just the right amount of pollution . As you correctly point out, the colour of the sun was a reddish orange, quite soft and mellow which would have given the seed of 'what if I squeezed my eyes shut and then slowly peeked?' sort of plan. Luck or not, I witnessed something I know I'll never see again, it was beautiful and awe inspiring.
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Post by Lancebloke on Fri Sep 06, 2019 8:11 pm

Taken on a mobile phone through a telescope...

Space and The wonders/mysteries of The Universe - Page 17 20190910

Can you guess what it is?
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Post by halfwise on Fri Sep 06, 2019 8:45 pm

Saturn.

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Post by Lancebloke on Sat Sep 07, 2019 8:05 am

The quality of the upload wasn't as "good" as the original.

You might be able to make out 2 other dots when zoomed in.
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Post by halfwise on Sat Sep 07, 2019 12:21 pm

I thought the fuzzy ball looked not quite circular so I went with saturn. At this resolution I don't think moons can be separated from stars, but 2 moons would be mars. Not very red looking though.

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Post by Lancebloke on Sun Sep 08, 2019 8:47 am

Nope.

This was me learning that it us pretty much impossible to use a mobile phone with my current scope.

It is an over exposed Jupiter. Smile
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Post by Lancebloke on Mon Sep 16, 2019 11:22 am

Ok... so after some very bad attempts at astrophotography with some limited equipment (I got a very blurry image of the galactic core of Andromdea this weekend) i have decided to purchase my first astrophotography equipment.

Between some new gadgets and cloudy skies I imagine it is going to take me a while to figure out how to use it all but I am hoping that before the end of the year I will have something to show for it! Watch this space (no pun intended... but left it in anyway).
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Post by halfwise on Mon Sep 16, 2019 1:19 pm

Yep, you need longer exposures than cell phones will provide. I hope your tracking motor is accurate.

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Post by Pettytyrant101 on Mon Sep 16, 2019 1:48 pm

{{ That sounds great Lance- look forward to seeing the fruits of your astro-photo labour.  Nod }}

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Post by Lancebloke on Mon Sep 16, 2019 2:18 pm

halfwise wrote:Yep, you need longer exposures than cell phones will provide.  I hope your tracking motor is accurate.

I have been using my DLSR for some recent shots and will use with my new set up. Tracking mount should be good but also have an auto-gider coming with it so should be very accurate once I learn how to use it all.
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Post by Lancebloke on Mon Sep 16, 2019 2:19 pm

Pettytyrant101 wrote:{{ That sounds great Lance- look forward to seeing the fruits of your astro-photo labour.  Nod }}

Me too. Going to be using GIMP for some of the processing which will be interesting too!
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Post by Pettytyrant101 on Mon Sep 16, 2019 6:40 pm

{{ GIMPs my main image tool so if there's any questions I can have a go at answering them.
My first tip is always try adjusting with the curves graph before you touch contrast, brightness or saturation in an image. }}

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Post by halfwise on Mon Sep 16, 2019 6:42 pm

No doubt there is astronomical software floating around that will take a number of short exposures and use the star field to line them back up for a long exposure if the tracking isn't spot on. But this would likely be a programming subroutine rather than drag and drop.

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Post by Lancebloke on Mon Sep 16, 2019 8:35 pm

I have a program that will stack all of the images and try to remove maximise signal versus noise. It is quite a process!! I am going to be trying several 10 minute plus exposures so I need to get the set up all correct so I dont end up with star trails etc.

Steep learning curve but hopefully worth it.
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Post by halfwise on Mon Sep 16, 2019 9:43 pm

Is that software supposed to eliminate star trails? If it's stacking images you may be better off with a bunch of shorter exposures rather than a few 10 minute exposures.

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Post by Lancebloke on Mon Sep 16, 2019 9:52 pm

It wont remove star trailing, just noise. The tracking mount and guide scope should get rid of that so long as I set up properly. I haven't worked out how to polar align properly yet!

I am want to get some deep sky objects so long exposure time is needed. And lots of them!
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