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This is Dare's astronomy page.  Over the years, I have progressed in my ability to take presentable astronomy-related photos -- from simple images directly 'out of the camera', to more recent experiments using 'stacking' and 'image enhancement' to bring out fine details that the optics cannot do on their own.  I hope you enjoy seeing them as much as I did in creating them!

CONTENTS

EVENTS

Year
Event
2016 Mega Super Moon

Super Hunter's Moon

Wide Field 2016
2015
M42

Moon

M33 & M45 & IC1805/IC1795

M13 & M27 & M57
2014
M31

M27 & M31 & M33

M31 & M45

Sky 2014

Planets 2014

Moon

Sun
2013
M31 & M42 & M52

Messier Variety

M31 & Moon

M31

M45

Wide Field

Panstarrs & M31 & M45
2012
Wide Field Fall

Meteor Showers

Sky

Venus Transit

Partial Eclipse

Sun

Venus & M45

Saturn
2011
Jupiter

Moon

Sky

Sun

NCP Chart
2010
Sky

Uranus

Jupiter
2009
Sky
2003
Jupiter

Saturn

Mars

Sun

Moon
1979
Eclipse

EQUIPMENT

Year Equipment
2013
Mount #2
2011
Scope #3
2009
Mount #1
2004
Scope #2
1990
Scope #1
1975
Scope #0

APPLETS

SidClock
Local Sky Map
Local Sidereal Time
Polaris Finder
Orbit Viewer
Planet Finder
Sun Clock
Yes Clock
Moon Calendar
Clear Dark Sky

MAPS

Dark Sky Map
Current SOHO & SDO Images
Solar System Scale Model Google Map

OTHER

Sunrise/set Plot for Morden
Hipparcos Catalogue HR Diagram
SChronos & SOrrery Diagrams

FORUMS

www.astronomyforum.net
www.cloudynights.com
www.iceinspace.com.au

LINKS

CalSKY
ClearDarkSky
Your Sky
Your Horizon
Your Telescope
Heavens Above
Winnipeg RASC
SkyView Cafe
SOHO

MEGA SUPER MOON

"Super Moons" seem to be all too common lately, but when I found out that the October 13, 2016 version was the closest since January 26, 1948, I made the efforts required to capture it.  Fortunately, the temperature was *much* above normal (around 10C), and so it wasn't too cold.  Initially, thin clouds obscured the Moon as it rose, but ample opportunities existed to capture it :)
PNG super moon 2016 11 13
21 image stack @ F5.6, 1/1500s exposure, 800ISO, with 400mm Sigma prime lens.


SUPER HUNTER'S MOON

For the fun of it, I decided to snap the so-called "Hunter's Moon" of October in 2016, especially considering it was another "Super Moon".  On the morning of October 15th, the Moon was very low and near the horizon when I grabbed it -- it was dramatically 'yellow' and distorted (squashed vertically).  The next morning, October 16th, it was higher in the sky and more of a natural 'white' color.   Both images taken with a Sigma 400mm prime lens @ F/5.6.
JPG yellow moon
JPG hunters moon



WIDE FIELD 2016

Having had very little opportunity to do astronomy in 2016, I took advantage of a moonless night in early October to use my 'new' used Rokinon 14mm F/2.8 lens (known for its clarity 'wide open') to grab some tripod-only wide-angle shots of the sky around my home.  Even 20s at 800 ISO was enough for some star drift.  It was very tricky to achieve focus (as with all wide-angle lenses).  I used Astrometry.net's code to label the objects in the images.
JPG East
JPG East with captions
JPG West
JPG West with captions
JPG Saggitarius
JPG Sagg with captions
JPG Cassiopeia
JPG Cass with captions
JPG Orion
JPG Orion with captions



M42

This one cost me a lot of time and effort, and was very close to being a total disaster! :)  The 1st attempt took place the night of Oct 18th, and despite the fact that many hours was devoted to the task, the Sigma 400mm lens locked the camera after the very first photo was taken -- without my knowledge.  It wasn't till Oct 22th that the weather was good enough to try again.  Strangely, the Sigma 400mm lens locked up the camera *again*, for no apparent reason and nothing that I tried could force it to cooperate.  In desperation, I grabbed my low-quality 400mm achromatic telescope and used it instead.  Many other problems occurred that night...
JPG M42 poster
Canon T2i/550D.  180s @ISO800 with iOptron R80 400mm f/5 achromatic refractor scope.  16 lights (80% of the best taken), 11 darks.  This image was 3X 'drizzled' by DSS.


MOON 2015

With all the excitement surrounding the September 27 'Supermoon' Lunar Eclipse, I made plans for a fairly eloborate AP session -- which almost resulted in almost total failure, simply because I had not anticipated how difficult it would be to focus on the Moon during peak eclipse -- when being viewed through an f/14 scope!  I had to take some crazy steps to insure that I had at least a few photos before the eclipse ended...
JPG supermoon sep 27 2015
Canon T2i/550D. 6s @ ISO800 with 1250mm Celestron C90 spotting scope at F/14, on iOptron SmartStar-A mount in alt/az mode.


M33 & M45 & IC1805/IC1795

The temperate on the night of September 12th was well above normal, with a gentle wind to keep most of the bugs away, a New Moon for dark skies, and clear skies with a low dewpoint forced to me to try some old and new subjects over again with my 400mm Sigma lens.  Many hours were lost due to bad polar alignment (and resultant star trails), but some of the results were 'not bad' :)
PNG M33 Poster
Canon T2i/550D with 29 lights (25% best taken), 9 darks, 10 bias, and 1 master flat frame.  Processed using DSS and GIMP.  240 seconds @ ISO800 with 400mm prime lens (Sigma APO Macro) at F/5.6.
PNG M45 Poster
Canon T2i/550D with 26 lights (25% best taken), 9 darks, 10 bias, and 1 master flat frame.  Processed using DSS and GIMP.  240 seconds @ ISO800 with 400mm prime lens (Sigma APO Macro) at F/5.6.
PNG IC1805/IC1795 Poster
Canon T2i/550D with 9 lights (25% best taken), 9 darks, 10 bias, and 1 master flat frame.  Processed using DSS and GIMP.  240 seconds @ ISO800 with 400mm prime lens (Sigma APO Macro) at F/5.6.  This one required a LOT of post-processing to bring out the faint red nebula -- others have done a much better job with this.  Next time I will try to include the 'Soul' nebula in the same frame.



M13 & M27 & M57

Weather, insects, and motivation delayed my astrophotography attempts until the late summer of 2015.  On August 19/20, I had intended to try to capture M51 (Whirlpool Galaxy) and M101 (Pinwheel Galaxy), but from my backyard tree-bounded site, they were obscured -- so I had to do a quick re-think.  My polar alignment was not as exact as I wished, but since it was already midnight and I was very sleepy, I decided to move ahead. 

The images below are not the 1:1 pixel images that I would typically show, but they look better slightly scaled down, and this helps to reduce the alignment flaws. :)
PNG M13 medium zoom
Canon T2i/550D with 12 lights (25% best taken), 3 darks, 10 flats, and 1 master bias frame.  Processed using DSS and GIMP.  240 seconds @ ISO800 with 400mm prime lens (Sigma APO Macro) at F/5.6.
PNG M27 medium zoom
Canon T2i/550D with 9 lights (25% best taken), 3 darks, 10 flats, and 1 master bias frame.  Processed using DSS and GIMP.  240 seconds @ ISO800 with 400mm prime lens (Sigma APO Macro) at F/5.6.
PNG M57 medium zoom
Canon T2i/550D with 25 lights (25% best taken), 3 darks, 10 flats, and 1 master bias frame.  Processed using DSS and GIMP.  240 seconds @ ISO800 with 400mm prime lens (Sigma APO Macro) at F/5.6.

M31

The last remaining nights of above-normal 2014 fall temperatures occurred on October 26th, and the recent arrival of my 'new' used telephoto lens from an eBay auction, I wanted to give M31 another try...
JPG M31 poster
Canon T2i/550D with 43 lights (80% best taken), 11 darks, 10 flats, and 10 bias frames.  Processed using DSS and GIMP.  180 seconds @ ISO800 with 400mm prime lens (Sigma APO Macro) at F/5.6.


M27 & M31 & M45

I had two excellent night of opportunity (almost new Moon, warm temperatures, low dew point) for some pics, so I took it -- even though it resulted in very little sleep :)  In hindsight, it looks like I inadvertently didn't set the maximum zoom setting of my telephoto i.e. 171mm instead of 250mm :(
JPG M27 poster
Canon T2i/550D with 27 lights (80% best taken), 10 darks, 10 flats, and 10 bias frames.  Processed using DSS (including 3x drizzle!) and GIMP.  300 (!) seconds @ ISO800 with 55-250mm zoom lens at 171mm setting.
JPG M31 Poster
Canon T2i/550D with 27 lights (80% best taken), 10 darks, 10 flats, and 10 bias frames.  Processed using DSS (including 3x drizzle!) and GIMP.  300 (!) seconds @ ISO800 with 55-250mm zoom lens at 171mm setting.
JPG M31 poster
Canon T2i/550D with 12 lights (80% best taken), 11 darks, 10 flats, and 10 bias frames.  Processed using DSS (including 3x drizzle!) and GIMP.  240 (!) seconds @ ISO800 with 55-250mm zoom lens at 171mm setting.
JPG M33 poster
Canon T2i/550D with 15 lights (80% best taken), 11 darks, 10 flats, and 10 bias frames.  Processed using DSS (including 3x drizzle!) and GIMP.  240 (!) seconds @ ISO800 with 55-250mm zoom lens at 171mm setting.


M31 & M45

In late August/early September 2014, I tried to do as much 'deep sky' shooting as I could while near the New Moon, temperatures were reasonable, and bugs were not a problem.  Unfortunately, bad focus and heavy dew killed two attempts.  On my 3rd attempt (2014/09/02) I was ready with good weather and a new Android app to help with my focus (DSLR Controller) :)
JPG M31 poster
Canon T2i/550D with 62 lights (90% best taken), 12 darks, 10 flats, and 10 bias frames.  Processed using DSS (including 3x drizzle!) and GIMP.  210 seconds @ ISO800 with 55-250mm zoom lens at 250mm setting.  I should not have been greedy and limited the exposure to 180 seconds to avoid star streaking.
JPG M45 poster
Canon T2i/550D with 35 lights (90% best taken), 9 darks, 10 flats, and 10 bias frames.  Processed using DSS (including 3x drizzle!) and GIMP. 180 seconds @ ISO800 with 55-250mm zoom lens at 250mm setting.


SKY 2014

JPG M3
JPG M5
M3 (poor example) taken with Canon T2i and 55-250mm lens with iOptron ZEQ25GT.  Stack of 11 lights/5 darks @120s @ISO 800 @F5.6.
M5 (poor example) taken with Canon T2i and 55-250mm lens with iOptron ZEQ25GT.  Stack of 7 lights/5 darks @120s @ISO 800 @F5.6.
JPG M100 area
JPG M100 area annotated
M100 and surrounding area in Coma Berenices taken with Canon T2i and Samyang 85mm lens with iOptron ZEQ25GT.  Stack of 11 lights/5 darks @120s @ISO 800 @F2.0 Same image annotated by Astrometry.net

PLANETS 2014

PNG Saturn before and after
2014/07/28: Another try at Saturn, but just not getting the clarity I wanted.  Canon T2i with Celestron C8 scope.  200 frames stacked with Registax.
JPG Saturn
A very tiny Saturn taken on 2014/05/29 using the 640x480 zoom crop video mode on the Canon T2i attached to Celestron C90 spotting scope.  Approximately 1800 of the best 40% images were stacked in Registax.  Not sure (yet) while this image is so much smaller than the older Canon EOS movrec method!


MOON 2014
2014/08/11: Super Moon with Canon T2i and Celestron C90 spotting scope.  Cloudy at sunset so woke up around 01:00 to take pics and video.
PNG 2014 super moon

2014/04/15: Lunar eclipse at much-colder-than-seasonable temperatures (-12C instead of 1C), between 02:30 and 03:30. 
JPG mosaic
Top images are full 'umbra' shadow pics, and bottom include start of brighter 'penumbra' light in lower left of the lunar sphere.  Canon T2i with 250mm telephoto lens, at 800ISO/F5.6 and exposure ranges from 1/8s to 1/2s. 

SUN 2014

2014/01/08: Temperatures were much below normal at the start of 2014 (-22C instead of -11C), but with the giant sunspot AR1944 showing up I just had to try doing a bit more 'winter astronomy'.  My fingers kept freezing up, and the laptop I was using was in 'dim screen' mode since it was running on battery power.  Low angle of the Sun (19) in the sky meant that I had to squat with my equipment on the road to avoid trees blocking the view...
PNG sun disk
Canon T1i/500D on Celestron C90 scope with Baader solar filter (ND=5.0 for 100000x reduction in light intensity) from Kendrick Astro Instruments. Video file created by EOS movrec.  Stacked image of 205 frames (best 20%) with Registax.  
PNG ar1944 compare
Canon T1i/500D on Celestron C90 scope with Baader solar filter (ND=5.0 for 100000x reduction in light intensity) from Kendrick Astro Instruments. Video file created by EOS movrec.  Stacked image of 378 frames (best 20%) with Registax.  Compare to NASA SDO (Solar Dynamics Observatory) image at the same time.

2014/01/09: Temperatures the next day were much more reasonable (-5C instead of average -11C), and so I took another shot at sunspot AR1944.  This time my fingers did not freeze, and I used the 640x480 video crop mode of my Canon T2i/550D instead of a netbook...

PNG full disk with ar1944
Canon T2i/550D on Celestron C90 scope with Baader solar filter (ND=5.0 for 100000x reduction in light intensity) from Kendrick Astro Instruments. Video file created via 640x480 video crop mode.  Stacked image of 170 frames (best 25%) with Registax.  I artificially colored my image to mimic the NASA/SDO one :) 
PNG ar1944 compare
Canon T2i/550D on Celestron C90 scope with Baader solar filter (ND=5.0 for 100000x reduction in light intensity) from Kendrick Astro Instruments. Video file created via 640x480 video crop mode.  Stacked image of 150 frames (best 10%) with Registax.  Compare to NASA SDO (Solar Dynamics Observatory) image at the same time.


M31 & M42 & M52

Sensing that the dropping temperatures and many weeks till the next New Moon might end this year's 'comfortable' astronomy and imaging, I wanted to try for more messier objects on October 12/13th, but was not entirely successful.

JPG m32 again
JPG m42 again
M31 (Andromeda) again!  This time I wanted to display a wider view.  Canon T1i/500D with 55-250mm zoom lens.  90s @ F5.6 @ ISO800.  77 lights/10 darks/20 lightflats/20 bias frames.

My goal was to capture a wider field around M42 to include the Horsehead Nebula (B33/IC 434) near the star Alnitak, but my zoom setting was not quite good enough.  Canon T1i/500D with 55-250mm zoom lens @ 135mm.  90s @ F5.6 @ ISO800.  46 lights/10 darks/10 light flats/10 dark flats/10 bias frames.

JPG m52
M52 (NGC 7654) was conveniently overhead while I was waiting for Orion, so I wanted to capture it.  Very small!  Canon T1i/500D with 55-250mm zoom lens.  60s @ F6.3 @ ISO800.  33 lights/10 darks.

Messier Variety

With temperatures getting uncomfortably cold at the start of October 2013 (near 0C), I decided to take advantage as much as possible of the remaining Moonless nights.  I very much wanted to try capturing M42 (Orion Nebula) before the cold and snow ended my outdoor astronomy for 2013.  While waiting for M42 to rise, I decided to re-try M31 and M45, but also M1 (which is much tougher than all the rest!).  I also included light and dark flats in the image processing sequence.

JPG M1 crab nebula
M31 andromeda jpg
M1 (Crab Nebula) on Canon T1i/500D with 55-250mm zoom lens.  90s @ F5.6 @ ISO800.  32 lights/21 darks/20 light flats/20 dark flats.
M31 (Andromeda) on Canon T1i/500D with 55-250mm zoom lens.  90s @ F5.6 @ ISO800.  80 lights/21 darks/20 light flats/20 dark flats.
M45 pleiades
M42 orion nebula jpg
M45 (Pleiades) on Canon T1i/500D with 55-250mm zoom lens.  90s @ F5.6 @ ISO800.  34 lights/21 darks/20 light flats/20 dark flats. M42 (Orion Nebula) on Canon T1i/500D with 55-250mm zoom lens.  90s @ F5.6 @ ISO800.  23 lights/21 darks/20 light flats/20 dark flats.


M31 & Moon on iOptron 80mm Refractor

After receiving a Celestron 93625 Universal 1.25-inch Camera T-Adapter, I was finally able to attach my Canon 500D onto my new inexpensive iOptron R80 refractor telescope.  I then used my new ZEQ25GT mount so as to be able to compare M31 images to the ones taken earlier with the Canon 55-250mm zoom lens.  Conclusion?  Not bad, but not as good as the Canon 55-250mm zoom :)

JPG 90s M31 stack with R80
JPG moon with R80
M31 (Andromeda) on Canon T1i/500D with 80mm iOptron R80 scope.  90s @ F5.0 @ ISO800.  100 lights/10 darks. Moon on Canon T1i/500D with 80mm iOptron R80 scope.  1/1000s @ F5.0 @ ISO800.

M31 Andromeda

On the night of 2013/09/17, I was better prepared for using my new iOptron ZEQ25GT mount, along with the intervalometer feature of Magic Lantern on my Canon 500D, and I focused on M31/Andromeda i.e. that which had let me down 4 days earlier.

JPG M31 60s stack
JPG M31 120s stack
M31 (Andromeda) on Canon T1i/500D with 55-250mm zoom lens.  60s @ F5.6 @ ISO800.  23 lights/17 darks. M31 (Andromeda) on  Canon T1i/500D with 55-250mm zoom lens.  120s @ F5.6 @ ISO800.  71 lights/20 darks.

M45 Pleiades

The night of 2013/09/13 was the test of my new iOptron ZEQ25GT mount.  In the restricted view of my backyard, a only a very simplistic polar alignment was possible.  Intended for many hours of images of M31 and M45, but camera malfunction prevented most of this.  Nevertheless, sufficient to prove the new mount as wonderful :)

JPG M45
M45 (Pleiades) using 55-250mm zoom @ F5.6 @ ISO800 @ 30s.  Stack 21 lights/12 darks.  Fully intended for 60s+ shots, but camera software reverted to default 30s for unknown reasons (!).  I did manage to get some nebulosity out of this Messier object :)


WIDE FIELD SEPTEMBER 2013

Traveled to two parks outside of my small city to escape light pollution, but need to go even further...

JPG milky way wide field stack
Samyang 8mm on Canon T1i/500D.  30s @ 3200ISO @ F5.6.  Stacking of 5 lights/20 darks and post-processing.


PANSTARRS & M31 & M45 2013

A long winter and cold spring was an obstacle to pleasant viewing early in 2013, but Comet C/2011 L4 "Panstarrs" would not wait, and so this became my first 'cold' adventure.

JPG Panstarrs 1 second
PNG Panstarrs 2s
Comet C/2011 L4 "Panstarrs"

First try! Samyang 85mm on Canon T1i/500D.  1s exposure @ 1600ISO @ F2.0 with no stacking.
Comet C/2011 L4 "Panstarrs" & M31

Next try! Panstarrs in lower right corner.  Samyang 85mm on Canon T1i/500D.  2s exposure @ 1600ISO @ F2.0 with stack of 30 lights/10 darks and post-processing.  Notice M31 (Andromeda Galaxy) is upper left corner.

5 seconds was enough to cause star motion blur with no tracking mount.

PNG M45 2 seconds
Pleiades (M45)

Since I was out in the cold anyways, decided to try M45 again.  85mm on Canon T1i/500D.  2s exposure @ 1600ISO @ F2.0 with stack of 30 lights/10 darks and post-processing.  5 seconds was enough to cause star motion blur with no tracking mount.

WIDE FIELD FALL 2012

With my iOptron telescope mount damaged beyond repair, I have to rely on simple camera/tripod astrophotography more heavily.  In the wee hours of the morning (04:00 CDT Oct 22) I set up my Canon T1i and Samyang 85mm fisheye.  Using 'Magic Lantern' to do the intervalometer work for me, and DeepSkyStacker for stack work, I captured a closeup of Orion (e.g. M42) and the Pleiades (M45).

PNG Orion closeup
PNG Plaiades M45 stack

Here is an Orion from the morning (04:00 CDT Oct 18) I set up my Canon T1i and Samyang 8mm fisheye, with an annotated version from Astrometry.

PNG Orion with 8mm fisheye stack


METEOR SHOWERS 2012

Decided to attempt capture of some of the 2012 Perseid Meteor shower.  Best predicted night was August 11/12, but that night was cloudy.  Next best was August 12/13, and even though thunderstorms threatened the evening, by the wee hours of the morning (03:00 CDT) I set up my Canon T1i and Samyang 8mm fisheye.  This time I used the newest version of 'Magic Lantern' to do the intervalometer work for me.


JPG perseid 2012 pic #1
JPG perseid 2012 pic #2
Perseid Meteor shower single capture.

Samyang 8mm on Canon T1i/500D.  30s exposure @ 3200ISO @ F5.6.
Perseid Meteor shower single capture.

Samyang 8mm on Canon T1i/500D.  30s exposure @ 3200ISO @ F5.6.
JPG Perseid pic #1 crop
JPG Perseid pic #2 crop
Perseid Meteor shower single capture (crop)

Samyang 8mm on Canon T1i/500D.  30s exposure @ 3200ISO @ F5.6.
Perseid Meteor shower single capture (crop)

Samyang 8mm on Canon T1i/500D.  30s exposure @ 3200ISO @ F5.6.


SKY STACKS 2012

Decided to experiment with using my old/heavy/non-computerized Celestron Ultima 8 telescope mount as a platform for unguided astrophotography shots, to capture a few Messier objects.  Not too bad, but lots of room for improvement :)

JPG M39 stack
JPG m57 stack
Cygnus

Attempt to capture M39/NGC 7092.

Samyang 85mm on Canon T1i/500D.  Piggyback on Celestron C8 Ultima mount (no GOTO).  30s exposures @ 1600ISO @ F1.4.  Stacked in DSS with 32 lights/12 darks.
Lyra

Attempt at M57/NGC 6720 ("Ring Nebula").

Samyang 85mm on Canon T1i/500D.  Piggyback on Celestron C8 Ultima mount (no GOTO).  30s exposures @ 1600ISO @ F1.4.  Stacked in DSS with 34 lights/12 darks.
JPG m39 crop
JPG m57 crop
M39/NGC 7092 crop.
M57/NGC 6720 crop. 


VENUS TRANSIT 2012

Here are some Venus transit pics taken on June 5/2012 again using Baader solar filter (ND=5.0 for 100000x reduction in light intensity) from Kendrick Astro Instruments.  I used a 55-255mm zoom lens on my Canon T1i DSLR at full magnification, running on top of my iOptron mount.  The mostly-cloudy weather, trees on the horizon, and early sunset, prevented the full transit from being recorded.  The images are stacks from Registax of 4 frames each (15s x 4 = 60s).

JPG venus
                transit 1 stack
JPG venus
                transit 2 stack
JPG venus
                transit 3 stack
17:24 Venus transit near beginning [8x (250mm) ISO200 @ 1/1000s @ F5.6] 17:46 Venus transit 20 approximately minutes later [8x (250mm) ISO200 @ 1/1000s @ F5.6] 18:09 Venus transit last good series [8x (250mm) ISO200 @ 1/1000s @ F5.6]

JPG transit
                equipment
JPG transit
                clouds

Equipment used: Canon T1i, 255mm zoom, iOptron mount, Baader Film, SmaTrig2, PowerBox800 View of some of the 'holes' in the clouds that I managed to grab some pics of the transit.  Notice my camera in the lower left corner.
Mini time lapse of the transit -- created with FFmpeg

PNG venus
              transit local times

PARTIAL ECLIPSE 2012

Here are some partial annular solar eclipse pics taken on May 20/2012 again using Baader solar filter (ND=5.0 for 100000x reduction in light intensity) from Kendrick Astro Instruments.  I used a 55-255mm zoom lens on my Canon T1i DSLR at full magnification, running on top of my iOptron mount.  The trees on the horizon, and early sunset, prevented the full eclipse from being recorded.

JPG sun at
                19:14
JPG sun at
                19:44
JPG sun at
                20:15
19:14 Partial annular solar eclipse starting [8x (250mm) ISO100 @ 1/1000s @ F5.6]
19:44 Partial annular solar eclipse 25% done 8x (250mm) ISO100 @ 1/1000s @ F5.6] 20:15 Partial annular solar eclipse 50% done 8x (250mm) ISO100 @ 1/1000s @ F5.6]

JPG
                equipment
JPG simple
                shot

Equipment used: Canon T1i, 255mm zoom, iOptron mount, Baader Film, SmaTrig2, PowerBox800
Simple shot through Nikon Coolpix 4300 camera at full zoom (24mm = 2.28x) [ISO100 @ 1/60s @ F4.9] with Baader Safety Film
Mini time lapse of the eclipse -- created with Hugin "align_image_stack" and FFmpeg


SUN 2012

JPG full sun with sunspot group
                1520
JPG closeup sunspot group
                1519/1520/1521
July 13/2012: Full sun disk using Celestron C90 captured on video from Canon T1i with EOS movrec and stacked with Registax freeware.  Video was ISO800 @ 1/25s @ 1232 frames (10% used) frames. July 13/2012: Full sun disk using Celestron C90 captured on video from Canon T1i with EOS movrec and stacked with Registax freeware.  Video was ISO800 @ 1/20s @ 3663 frames (5% used) frames.  For comparison to below, the Registax 'sharpen' wavelet setting was 0.15.

sunspot 1520 sharpen 10
sunspot 1520 sharpen 11
sunspot 1520 sharpen 12
sunspot 1520 sharpen 13
sunspot 1520 sharpen 14
Closeup of Sunspot Group 1520 with Registax sharpen set at 0.10
Closeup of Sunspot Group 1520 with Registax sharpen set at 0.11 Closeup of Sunspot Group 1520 with Registax sharpen set at 0.12 Closeup of Sunspot Group 1520 with Registax sharpen set at 0.13 Closeup of Sunspot Group 1520 with Registax sharpen set at 0.14
sunspot 1520 sharpen 16
sunspot 1520 sharpen 17
sunspot 1520 sharpen 18
sunspot 1520 sharpen 19
sunspot 1520 sharpen 20
Closeup of Sunspot Group 1520 with Registax sharpen set at 0.16 Closeup of Sunspot Group 1520 with Registax sharpen set at 0.17 Closeup of Sunspot Group 1520 with Registax sharpen set at 0.18 Closeup of Sunspot Group 1520 with Registax sharpen set at 0.19 Closeup of Sunspot Group 1520 with Registax sharpen set at 0.20

Here is a sunspot group image taken on June 14/2012 (Celestron C90) and June 15/2012 (Celestron C8) again using Baader solar filter (ND=5.0 for 100000x reduction in light intensity) from Kendrick Astro Instruments, comparing my two scopes.  Even though the C8 magnification is 1.6x greater than the C90, with increased resolution, the smaller C90 actually does a very good job -- and has the added benefit of showing the entire disk of the Sun :)

PNG sun on C90
PNG sunspot
                1504 on C90
June 14/2012: Full sun disk using Celestron C90 captured on video from Canon T1i with EOS movrec and stacked with Avistack freeware.  Video was ISO400 @ 1/160s @ 1332 frames (5% used) frames. Sunspot group 1504 captured using Celestron C90 on video from Canon T1i with EOS movrec and stacked with Avistack freeware.  Video was ISO1600 @ 1/800s @ 1870 frames (10% used) frames.
PNG sun on C8
PNG sunpsot 1504 on C8
June 15/2012: Partial sun disk using Celestron C8 Ultima captured on video from Canon T1i with EOS movrec and stacked with Avistack freeware.  Video was ISO1600 @ 1/800 @ 1811 frames (10% used) frames. Sunspot group 1504 captured using Celestron C8 on video from Canon T1i with EOS movrec and stacked with Avistack freeware.  Video was ISO800 @ 1/640s @ 1882 frames (10% used) frames.

Here is a sunspot group image taken on May 10/2012 again using Baader solar filter (ND=5.0 for 100000x reduction in light intensity) from Kendrick Astro Instruments, again using my larger 8" Celestron Ultima scope attached to my Canon T1i DSLR.

PNG dare
                  sunspot 1476
PNG
                  sunspot 1476 nasa sdo
Sunspot group 1476 using Celestron C8 Ultima captured on video from Canon T1i with EOS movrec and stacked with Avistack freeware.  Video was ISO400 @ 1/160s @ 1332 (5% used) frames.
Same sunspot from NASA SDO (Solar Dynamics Observatory) for comparison.

Here is a sunspot group image taken on April 20/2012 again using Baader solar filter (ND=5.0 for 100000x reduction in light intensity) from Kendrick Astro Instruments.  This time I used my larger 8" Celestron Ultima scope attached to my Canon T1i DSLR.

PNG sunspot 1460 stacked c8
JPG sunpot 1460 nasa sdo
Sunspot group 1460 using Celestron C8 Ultima captured on video from Canon T1i with EOS movrec and stacked with Registax freeware.  Video was ISO800 @ 1/320s @ 1350 frames.
Same sunspot from NASA SDO (Solar Dynamics Observatory) for comparison.


SATURN 2012

Here are my attempt, on 2012/04/16, at using a astronomical 'video' with Registax freeware to see what stacking and wavelet image enhancement can do a fuzzy Saturn video -- one day after 'opposition' with Earth occurred.  I captured the videos using EOS movrec, which I could then zoom by 5x.


PNG saturn before registax
PNG saturn after registax

Saturn 2032mm-1600iso-1/8s-f/14 before using Registax
Saturn 2032mm-1600iso-1/8s-f/14 before using Registax (1056 frames)
Saturn video crop 300x200 (1320 frames)


VENUS & M45 2012

Here are some quick one-shot images of the 2012 Venus/Pleiades encounter on April 3rd:

JPG venus/m45 800iso
JPG venus/m45 captions
Venus and M45 (Pleiades/Seven Sisters) 85mm-800iso-1/2s-f1.4
Venus and M45 (Pleiades/Seven Sisters) 85mm-800iso-1/2s-f1.4 with captions
JPG venus/m45 1600iso
JPG venus/m45 via Stellarium
Venus and M45 (Pleiades/Seven Sisters) 85mm-1600iso-1s-f1.4 Venus and M45 (Pleiades/Seven Sisters) at same time in Stellarium software


JUPITER 2011

Here are my first attempt, on 2011/09/27, at using a astronomical 'video' with Registax freeware to see what stacking and wavelet image enhancement can do a fuzzy Jupiter video:

JPG Jupiter
                  before Registax
JPG jupiter
                  after Registax

Jupiter 1250mm-1600iso-1/30s-f/14 before using Registax
Jupiter 1250mm-1600iso-1/30s-f/14 after using Registax (668 frames)
Jupiter video crop 200x200 (668 frames)

On the evening of 2011/11/24, temperatures were extremely mild (4.5C) and so I tried again for Jupiter on the C90 scope, comparing the same view to that of Stellarium.

JPG
                  jupiter and moons registax
JPG jupiter and moons stellarium
Jupiter 1250mm-800iso-1/10s-f/14 after Registax
Jupiter at same time in Stellarium software

MOON 2011

Here are my first attempt, on 2011/08/14, at using a astronomical 'video' with Avistack freeware to see what stacking and wavelet image enhancement can do a simple Moon video (which can be found on YouTube):

PNG moon raw
PNG moon
                avistack
Moon 1250mm before using Avistack (18 frames) Moon 1250mm after using Avistack (18 frames)

SKY STACKS 2011

Here are my first serious astrophotography experiments with 'stacking' multiple exposures of the same sky images to increase contrast and reduce exposure noise.

JPG
                  cassiopeia
JPG cynus sagitta stacked
JPG
                  milky way stacked
Cassiopeia 50mm-3200iso-8s-f/1.7
Cygnus/Sagitta 50mm-3200iso-8s-f/1.7 Milky Way at Sagittarius 8mm-3200iso-30s-f/5.6
JPG
                  sagittarius stacked
JPG
                  sagittarius stacked
JPG
                  ursa major stacked
Sagittarius 55mm-3200iso-8s-f/1.8 Sagittarius 55mm-3200iso-8s-f/1.8
Ursa Major 55mm-3200iso-8s-f/1.8
JPG
                  andromeda @ 55mm
Andromeda @ 55mm dark zoom JPG andromeda @ 100mm zoom
Andromeda 55mm-3200iso-8s-f/1.8
Andromeda 100mm-3200iso-8s-f/5.0 Andromeda 55mm-3200iso-4s-f/1.8

Here are my first serious astrophotography experiments with 'stacking' multiple exposures of the same sky images to increase contrast and reduce exposure noise and 'tracking' to reduce star trailing using a motorized telescope mount (in this case, the iOptron SmartStar-A).

JPG cygnus
                  @ 55mm JPG M39
JPG M39 unsharp
Cygnus 55mm-3200iso-30s-f/1.8 Cygnus 55mm-3200iso-30s-f/1.8 zoom (M39!)
Cygnus 55mm-3200iso-30s-f/1.8 zoom unsharp mask (M39!)
JPG andromeda 1st tracking
JPG andromeda dark zoom
JPG andromeda dark zoom unsharp
Andromeda 55mm-800iso-60s-f/1.8 Andromeda 55mm-800iso-60s-f/1.8 zoom (M31 & M32 & M110!)
Andromeda 55mm-800iso-60s-f/1.8 zoom unsharp mask (M31 & M32 & M110!)
JPG amdromeda 55mm 1600iso 60s
JPG andromeda zoom
JPG andromeda zoom unsharp
Andromeda 55mm-1600iso-60s-f/1.7 Andromeda 55mm-1600iso-60s-f/1.7 zoom (M31 & M32 & M110!)
Andromeda 55mm-1600iso-60s-f/1.7 zoom unsharp mask (M31 & M32 & M110!)
JPG ursa major
JPG ursa major m101
JPG ursa major m101 unsharp
Ursa Major 55mm-1600iso-60s-f/1.7
Ursa Major 55mm-1600iso-60s-f/1.7 zoom (M101 & Supernova 2011fe!)
Ursa Major 55mm-1600iso-60s-f/1.7 zoom unsharp mask (M101 & Supernova 2011fe!)

Here are some images showing the progression of image edits on a 2011/09/22 astrophoto of M8 (Lagoon Nebula), M20 (Trifid Nebula), and M21 (NGC 6351) using my new Samyang 85mm F/1.4 prime lens:

JPG sagittarius raw
JPG sagittarius nice
JPG M8 M20 M21
                  zoom
Sagittarius 85mm-1600iso-60s-f/1.4 after stacking and basic RGB/saturation adjustments but before any other processing
Sagittarius 85mm-1600iso-60s-f/1.4 after levels/curves adjusting in GIMP
Sagittarius 85mm-1600iso-60s-f/1.4 after levels/curves adjusting in GIMP crop for just M8 (Lagoon Nebula) and M20 (Trifid Nebula)

Here are some images showing the progression of image edits on a 2011/09/22 astrophoto of M31 (Andromeda Galaxy) using my new Samyang 85mm F/1.4 prime lens:

JPG M31 stage 0
JPG M31 stage 1
JPG M31 stage 2
Single image of M31 85mm-1600iso-60s-f/1.4 (note intentional overexposure).
Stacked image (90 light/30 dark) of M31 85mm-1600iso-60s-f/1.4 after RGB color alignment (note shift to grey hue).
Stacked image (90 light/30 dark) of M31 85mm-1600iso-60s-f/1.4 after color level shift on dark side (note increased contrast).
JPG M31 stage 4
JPG M31 stage 5
JPG M31 stage 6
Stacked image (90 light/30 dark) of M31 85mm-1600iso-60s-f/1.4 after color curves adjustment (note nebulosity increase).
Stacked image (90 light/30 dark) of M31 85mm-1600iso-60s-f/1.4 after(again) a color level shift on dark side (note increased contrast).
Stacked image (90 light/30 dark) of M31 85mm-1600iso-60s-f/1.4 after unsharp filter tweaking (note artificial sharpness increase).

The progression (so far) with my ability to image M31 (Andromeda Galaxy):

JPG M31 3200iso 55mm 8s
JPG M31 800iso 55mm 60s
M31 3200iso 55mm 8s single shot
M31 800iso 55mm 60s stacked shot
JPG M31 1600iso 55mm 60s JPG M31 1600iso 85mm 60s
M31 1600iso 55mm 60s stacked shot M31 1600iso 85mm 60s stacked shot


SUN 2011

Here is an image of the Sun taken on August 2/2011 again using Baader solar filter (ND=5.0 for 100000x reduction in light intensity) from Kendrick Astro Instruments.  However, this time I used my smaller 90mm Celestron C90 scope attached to my Canon T1i DSLR.

JPG sun
JPG sunspot group 1261
JPG sunspot group 1263
Sun 40x 1250mm-400iso-1/800s-f/13.89 Closeup of sunspot group 1261
Closeup of sunspot group 1263

Here is a newer image of the Sun taken on September 26/2011 again using Baader solar filter (ND=5.0 for 100000x reduction in light intensity) from Kendrick Astro Instruments.  This time I used captured a video using EOS movrec, and did some image processing enhancement using Registax:

JPG sun before
                  registax
jpg sun after
                  registax

Sun 40x 1250mm-1600iso-1/500s-f/13.89 before using Registax Sun 40x 1250mm-1600iso-1/500s-f/13.89 after using Registax (1757 frames) Sun video (1757 frames)
jpg
                  sunspot 1302 before registax
JPG
                  sunspot 1302 after registax

Closeup of sunspot group 1302 1250mm-400iso-1/125s-f/13.89 before using Registax
Closeup of sunspot group 1302 1250mm-400iso-1/125s-f/13.89 after Registax (1843 frames)
Sunspot 1302 video (1843 frames)


MORDEN NCP ANGLE CHART


PNG Morden NCP chart
PNG globe2

SKY TIME LAPSE 2010 & 2011

Here are some fisheye 'time lapse' videos that I created during the summer of 2010 using both my older Nikon Coolpix 4300 and newer Canon T1i camera:


URANUS 2010

Here are some pictures that I took of the planet Uranus (for the 1st time in my life!) on the evening of September 27th.

Uranus was 19.096 AU (2856723408 km) from the Earth.

JPG uranus
jpg
jpg
Uranus 1/8 s f2.6 ISO 400 8mm
(112x magnification)
Uranus 1/4 s f2.6 ISO 400 8mm
(112x magnification)
Uranus 1/4 s f4.4 ISO 400 25mm
(350x magnification)


JUPITER 2010

Here are some pictures that I took of the planet Jupiter on the evening of September 27th.

Jupiter was 3.962 AU (592707276 km) from the Earth.  A few days before, on September 20th, Jupiter was the closest it has been to Earth since 1963: it was 3.953 AU (591360894 km)

jpg
jpg
Jupiter and Galileon moons 1/8s f2.6 ISO 400 8mm (112x magnification) with labels
Jupiter and Galileon moons 1/8s f2.6 ISO 400 8mm (112x magnification)

jpg jupiter
jpg
jpg
Jupiter 1/125s F4.3 ISO 400 25mm
(350x magnification)
Jupiter 1/60s F4.3 ISO 400 25mm
(350x magnification)
Jupiter 1/30s F4.3 ISO 400 25mm
(350x magnification)
jpg
jpg
jpg
Jupiter 1/125s F5.1 ISO 400 8mm
(451x magnification)
Jupiter 1/60s F5.1 ISO 400 32mm
(451x magnification)
Jupiter 1/30s F5.1 ISO 400 32mm
(451x magnification)

Here are some pictures that I took of the planet Jupiter on the evening of September 25th.

Jupiter was 3.958 AU (592108884 km) from the Earth.  A few days before, on September 20th, Jupiter was the closest it has been to Earth since 1963: it was 3.953 AU (591360894 km)

JPG
                  jupiter 1
JPG
                  jupiter 2
Jupiter 1/4s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
(112x magnification)
Jupiter 1/4s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
(112x magnification)
JPG
                  jupiter 4
JPG
                  jupiter 3
Jupiter 1/250s F3.0 ISO 400 8mm
(112x magnification)
Jupiter 1/15s F4.8 ISO 400 32mm
(451x magnification)


SKY 2009

Here are some fisheye (180) pics I took early on the morning of 2009/08/12, during the Perseid meteor shower, with my Nikon Coolpix 4500 and the 0.21x Nikon FC-E8 fisheye lens.  No meteorites were captured, but it gave me a chance to do long-exposure fisheye shots.  The moon was just past full, so it washed out the sky a bit.  The 'noise reduction' feature was active during this time, but even then 'hot pixels' are extreme at 60 second exposures.  Click on an image for the full-size version.

sky
                  10s
sky
                  20s
sky
                  30s
Sky Fisheye
10s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
Sky Fisheye
20s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
Sky Fisheye
30s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
sky
                  40s
sky
                  50s
sky
                  60s
Sky Fisheye
40s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
Sky Fisheye
50s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
Sky Fisheye
60s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm

Here are some fisheye (180) pics I took early on the morning of 2009/08/26, with my Nikon Coolpix 4500 and the 0.21x Nikon FC-E8 fisheye lens.  The moon was just past new, so it did not interfere with the sky this time.  The 'noise reduction' feature was active during this time, but even then 'hot pixels' are extreme at 60 second exposures.  The maximum exposure for minimal noise is about 20s (which shows mag 5 stars), but the Milky Way is brightest at 60s.  Click on an image for the full-size version.

sky 5s
sky 10s
sky 15s
Sky Fisheye
5s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
Sky Fisheye
10s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
Sky Fisheye
15s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
sky 20s
sky 25s
sky 30s
Sky Fisheye
20s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
Sky Fisheye
25s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
Sky Fisheye
30s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
sky 40s
sky 50s
sky 60s
Sky Fisheye
40s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
Sky Fisheye
50s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
Sky Fisheye
60s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm

Here are normal pics I took early on the morning of 2009/08/26, with my Nikon Coolpix 4500.   The maximum exposure for minimal noise is about 20s, due to blur that occurs with the Earth's rotation.  Click on an image for the full-size version.

m45 20s
m45 30s
M45 Pleiades 20s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
M45 Pleiades 30s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
m45 40s
m45 50s
M45 Pleiades 40s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm M45 Pleiades 50s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm

Here are normal pics I took early on the morning of 2009/08/26, with my Nikon Coolpix 4500.   These are just the 20s exposures.  At this exposure, the magnitude limit appears to be about 5.  Click on an image for the full-size version.

jupiter capricornus 20s
ursa
                  major 20s
Jupiter in Capricornus 20s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
Ursa Major 20s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
sky view
                  1 20s
sky view
                  2 20s
Unknown Sky View #1 20s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm
Unknown Sky View #2 20s F2.6 ISO 400 8mm


JUPITER 2003

Here are some pictures that I took of the planet Jupiter on the morning of October 19/2003.  I wanted to grab some shots of these 'old favorites' before the temperatures became too uncomfotable.  I found that taking these pictures of Jupiter and Saturn were much more difficult that those I took earlier in the fall of Mars.

Jupiter was 6.0419 AU (903855374 km) from the Earth.

JPG Pic
                Jupiter zoom manual
JPG Pic
                Jupiter zoom manual
JPG Pic
                Jupiter zoom manual
Jupiter Manual Zoom
1/8 second F4.2 ISO100 20mm
Jupiter Manual Zoom
1/15 second F4.2 ISO100 20mm
Jupiter Manual Zoom
1/15 second F4.2 ISO100 20mm

Here are some Jupiter pics that I took the next morning (October 20/2003).  Now that I had realized that sky conditions and eyepiece focus were even more important than exposure, I tried again and got better results.  This is more by accident than skill, though, since it is almost impossible to focus properly using the preview screen on the digital camera (the image is too tiny).

JPG Jupiter manual
JPG Jupiter manual
JPG Jupiter manual
Jupiter Manual Zoom
1/30 second F4.2 ISO100 20mm
Jupiter Manual Zoom
1/30 second F4.2 ISO100 20mm
Jupiter Manual Zoom
1/30 second F4.2 ISO100 20mm

SATURN 2003

Here are some pictures that I took of the planet Saturn on the morning of October 19/2003.  I got these at the same time as the Jupiter pics above.

Saturn was 8.7543 AU (1309624639 km) from the Earth.

JPG Pic
                  Saturn zoom manual
JPG Pic
                  Saturn zoom manual
JPG Pic
                  Saturn zoom manual
Saturn Manual Zoom
1/4 second F4.2 ISO100 20mm
Saturn Manual Zoom
1/8 second F4.2 ISO100 20mm
Saturn Manual Zoom
1/8 second F4.2 ISO100 20mm

Here are some Saturn pics that I took the next morning (October 20/2003).  The same story applies here to the Jupiter pics mentioned above -- but the results are even better for Saturn!

JPG
                Saturn manual
JPG
                Saturn manual
JPG
                Saturn manual
Saturn Manual Zoom
1/4 second F4.2 ISO100 20mm
Saturn Manual Zoom
1/4 second F4.2 ISO100 20mm
Saturn Manual Zoom
1/8 second F4.2 ISO100 20mm

MARS 2003

At 04:51 CDT on the morning of August 27/2003, Mars was within 55758006 km (34646418 miles) of Earth.  This is the closest that it has been in over 73000 years!

PNG graphic of Mars
            opposition

Here are some pictures that I took of the planet Mars early on the morning of August 26/2003.  Although the closest approach of Mars to Earth only occured on August 27, I didn't want to take a chance of bad weather messing up my plans.  Plus, this was the first time that I had attempted to take digital pictures of astronomical objects through my telescope.  In that hour between 01:00 and 02:00, I learned a lot about what to do, and what NOT to do...

My first lesson was not to put the digital camera into 'auto-exposure' mode -- the camera over-compensates for the dark image, and you end up with mars images that look like little suns.  The 2.5x zoom on the camera was impressive, though.  The effective magnification is 68 (telescope) x 2.5 (camera) = 170x.

JPG Pic
                Mars zoom auto
JPG Pic
                Mars zoom auto
JPG Pic
                Mars zoom auto
Mars Auto-Exposure Zoom
1 second F4.2 ISO400 20mm
Mars Auto-Exposure Zoom
1 second F4.2 ISO400 20mm
Mars Auto-Exposure Zoom
1 second F4.2 ISO400 20mm

Having learned that auto-exposure was not appropriate, I tried manual exposure mode without any zooming.  The default setting of 1/125 seconds, F2.9, and ISO 100 seems just about perfect for this situation.  The image of Mars on the viewfinder was extremely small, but actually the images turned out to be not too bad!  The effective magnification is 68x (telescope) x 1 (camera) = 68x.

JPG Pic Mars
                nozoom
JPG Pic Mars
                nozoom
JPG Pic Mars
                nozoom
JPG Pic Mars
                nozoom
Mars Manual Normal
1/125 second F2.9 ISO100 8mm
Mars Manual Normal
1/125 second F2.9 ISO100 8mm
Mars Manual Normal
1/125 second F2.9 ISO100 8mm
Mars Manual Normal
1/125 second F2.9 ISO100 8mm

My next shots were with the full 2.5x zoom.  For safety, I decided to use the exposure 'bracketing' feature so that I would get a range of exposures around the default value.  As it turns out, the images on the '+' side turned out to be the best of all, in my opinion.  The effective magnification is 68 (telescope) x 2.5 (camera) = 170x.

JPG Pic
                Mars zoom manual
JPG Pic
                Mars zoom normal
JPG Pic
                Mars zoom normal
Mars Manual Normal Zoom
1/125 seconds F4.2 ISO100 20mm
Mars Manual Normal Zoom
1/125 seconds F4.2 ISO100 20mm
Mars Manual Normal Zoom
1/125 seconds F4.2 ISO100 20mm
JPG Pic
                Mars zoom dark
JPG Pic
                Mars zoom dark

Mars Manual Dark Zoom
5/788 seconds F4.2 ISO100 20mm
Mars Manual Dark Zoom
5/594 seconds F4.2 ISO100 20mm

JPG Pic
                Mars zoom bright
JPG Pic
                Mars zoom bright
JPG Pic
                Mars zoom bright
Mars Manual Bright Zoom
5/394 seconds F4.2 ISO100 20mm
Mars Manual Bright Zoom
5/394 seconds F4.2 ISO100 20mm
Mars ManuaMars Manual
1/99 seconds F4.2 ISO100 20mm

The next day, during 01:30 to 03:30 August 27/2003, I took my final round of pictures -- this time clicking until my battery ran out.  With a great deal of patience, I managed to get some pics out my the extremely narrow field of my 7mm (290x) eyepiece.  Since I (inadvertently) has a moderate amount of zoom activated, the effective magnification is 290 (telescope) x 1.73 (camera) = 504x.  This is just over the 480x limit of the optics involved.

JPG Mars
                with 7mm eyepiece
JPG Mars
                with 7mm eyepiece
JPG Mars
                with 7mm eyepiece
Mars Manual Normal Zoom
1/60 seconds F3.5 ISO100 13.9mm
Mars Manual Normal Zoom
1/60 seconds F3.5 ISO100 13.9mm
Mars Manual Normal Zoom
1/60 seconds F3.5 ISO100 13.9mm

In my final round of pictures, I managed to push the limits of both the camera, telescope, and my skill.  The effective magnification is 290 (telescope) x 2.5 (camera) = 725x.  This is well beyond the practical 480x limit of the telescope, but shows what can be done.

JPG Mars
                with 7mm eyepiece and zoom
JPG Mars
                with 7mm eyepiece and zoom
JPG Mars
                with 7mm eyepiece and zoom
Mars Manual Normal Zoom
1/60 seconds F4.2 ISO100 20mm
Mars Manual Normal Zoom
1/30 seconds F4.2 ISO100 20mm
Mars Manual Normal Zoom
1/30 seconds F4.2 ISO100 20mm

SUN 2003

Here is a small experimental photograph of the Sun taken on October 20/2003.  The picture was taken though my digital camera with the 8x CrystalVue SharpShooter monocular, combined with the camera's 2.5x zoom (combined total of 20x zoom).  On the front of the monocular, I taped the filter that I used to visually observe the 1979 solar eclipse (yes, over 24 years ago!).  The image is very disappointing. 

JPG
                Pic of Sun with eclipse filter

This next shot was taken on November 1/2003, except this time it was taken through my big scope with a Baader solar filter (ND=5.0 for 100000x reduction in light intensity) from Kendrick Astro Instruments.  The improvement in resolution is substantial.  The closeups of the sunspots are not enlargements -- they are direct digital crops from the original.

Click on the first image for a link to the full-sized version.

JPG Sun
                  reduced image
JPG Sun sunspot #1
JPG Sun sunspot
Sun (6x reduction in size)
1/1000 second F2.8 ISO100 8mm
Solar Sunspot #0488
1/1000 second F2.8 ISO100 8mm
Solar Sunspot #0486
1/1000 second F2.8 ISO100 8mm

MOON 2003

JPG Moon image

A quick snap of the Moon (in waxing phase) taken the evening of September 4/2003 with the 8x CrystalVue SharpShooter monocular, combined with the camera's 2.5x zoom (combined total of 20x zoom).  I reduced the exposure to bring out more detail.  The final exposure was 1/60 seconds F4.2 ISO100 20mm.

JPG Moon Wane
              Phase

This picture of the Moon (in waning phase) was taken the evening of November 30/2003 with my large telescope and the 30mm eyepiece.  There was no camera zoom involved, and the image was reduced in size by 2/3.  The exposure was 1/60 seconds F2.8 ISO100 8mm. 

JPG Moon upper half

This picture of the Moon (in waning phase) was taken the same evening of November 30/2003 with my large telescope and my new 18mm eyepiece.  There was no camera zoom involved, and the image was reduced in size by 2/3.  The exposure was 1/125 seconds F2.8 ISO100 8mm. 

JPG Moon crater
        closeup

This closeup picture of some Moon craters was taken the same evening of November 30/2003 with my large telescope and my new 18mm eyepiece.  There was no camera zoom involved and no image size reduction.  The exposure was 1/125 seconds F2.8 ISO100 8mm. 

JPG Full Moon 2004.09/29

This full moon was taken on September 29/2004 with my medium 'Orbitor' telescope with my 18mm eyepiece.  The image was reduced about 3x.  The exposure was 1/85.5 seconds F2.8 ISO100 8mm. 

SOLAR ECLIPSE 1979

These are pics of my the solar eclipse that took place in Manitoba in February 26/1979. This was one of the few times in my entire life that I 'skipped school'. Taking pictures of this event was far more important than being in school (grade 11) that day. I was 16, with a cheap SLR camera and an army surplus telescopic lens, but a lot of enthusiasm!


Eclipse Photo #1
Eclipse Photo #2
Eclipse Photo #3

These are some pics of the solar eclipse from the print media at the time (Winnipeg Free Press and Manitoba Cooperator).



Here is the cover of an envelope containing an 'Eclipse Visor' produced by "The Manitoba Planetarium" and distributed "Champs Food Systems Ltd." (KFC!):

PNG
          1979 eclipse info graphic

Other Eclipse 1979 links:

Williams College Website
Glenn Connell Website
Ted Espenak Website
Ted Pedas Website


DARE'S BUSHNELL SKYCHIEF JR SCOPE

JPG bushnell sky chief jr
Way back, when I was 13 or so, I noticed an ad for a used telescope in our local newspaper -- surprising since a lived in a small town.  After some appropriate begging and pleading, I was soon the proud owner of my own telescope: a Bushnell Sky Chief Jr!

It was an achromatic refractor-style 60mm aperature scope with two eyepieces, a 2x barlow, a right-angle viewer, and a (dangerous!) eyepiece-attached sun filter, all on a wooden alt/az tripod.  I spent many hours with that scope, even trying to take some long-exposure film-based SLR photos -- even though the mount was inappropriate.

JPG achromatic refractor

Here are the specs that I could read from the scope or determine on my own:

Bushnell Model
Sky Chief Jr
Aperture
60mm (2.4")
Focal Length
700mm (27.6")
Focal Ratio
f/11.7
Resolution
1.93 arc seconds
Light Gathering Power
64x
Visual Limiting Magnitude
11.6
Highest Useful Power
120x
Standard Eyepieces Type
25mm
Standard Eyepieces Power
35x
Standard Eyepieces Angular Field of View
0.7/0.1
Finderscope Field Type
5x15mm


DARE'S CELESTRON ULTIMA 8 PEC SCOPE

JPG
                  Pic Celestron Ultima 8 My main telescope was purchased in October/1990 from a now-defunct Manitoba company named "Cosmic Connection".  I love it, but hardly use it, since city lights are a major nuisance.  It lacks a computer control and/or interface, which is what I would want if I were to purchase a new one some day.

The telescope is great, with a heavy duty mount and tripod -- which you take for granted until you compare it to the typical telescope mounts that you see on 'department store' telescopes!

It is rather heavy and bulky to move around, which is why I was interested in a smaller (but high-quality) scope for 'quick peeks' (see below).

This is Schmidt-Cassegrain design, which is a 'catadioptric':

Schmidt-Cassegrain-Telescope

Here are the specs from the catalog:

Celestron Model
Ultima 8 PEC
Aperture
203mm (8")
Focal Length
2032mm (80")
Focal Ratio
f/10.0
Resolution
0.57 arc seconds
Light Gathering Power
843x (733x)
Visual Limiting Magnitude
14.0
Highest Useful Power
480x
Nearest Focus
9m (30')
Secondary Obstruction
70mm (2.75")
Percent of Primary Surface Area 11.8%
Star Diagonal/Focuser Size
31.75mm (1.25")
Standard Eyepieces Type
30mm Plossl/7mm Ortho
Standard Eyepieces Power
68x/290x
Standard Eyepieces Angular Field of View
0.7/0.1
Finderscope Field Type
8x50mm
Finderscope Field of View 5.2
Setting Circle Diameter Right Ascension
8.75"
Setting Circle Diameter Declination
5.13"
Optical Tube Length
214mm (18.5")
Optical Tube Weight
4.9kg (10.7 lbs)
Total Weight with Fork Mount and Clock Drive
15kg (33.1 lbs)
Total Instrument Weight with Tripod
30kg (66 lbs)
Total Shipping Weight
31kg (69 lbs)

Here is a commentary on the history this this particular model of Celestron telescope from:

http://www.company7.com/celestron/index.html

1989 saw the introduction of the Ultima line. The Ultima 8 telescope is arguably one of the most stable commercially built SCTs for the amateur. Apporpriately it is also one of the heaviest. This line maintained the same basic "Starbright" multi-coated optics of previous models in redesigned castings for the optical tube. This is coupled to a redesigned, heavier fork mount with carrying handles and a large 2 5/8" diameter polar shaft. The initial drive system was unique, but with some deficiencies. The telescope was driven by an AC motor, run by a high efficiency quartz locked inverter. This, in turn, was powered by internal, rechargeable, lead acid batteries. Although this resulted in a fairly long lasting power supply and did not involve replacing batteries, some of the advantages of the DC drive used on the Powerstars were lost. Standard accessories included a heavy duty wedge and tripod, 1 1/4" star diagonal and eyepiece and an 8x50 polar finder. A heavy duty, high impact molded plastic carrying case provided good protection for the telescope. The very next year, the rechargable battery was replaced with a 9 volt alkaline battery and the drive was replaced by true DC motors and a microprocessor. The processor allowed four digitally controlled drive rates, including solar, lunar, siderial and King. It also allowed use in both hemispheres just by flipping a switch as well as the addition of Periodic Error Correction (PEC). This electronic wizardry was a great benefit to astrophotographers, allowing them to track almost any object and to "train" the drive to automatically counteract the errors that are inherent in any gear system. While even the basic system without PEC was extremely accurate, enough to allow unguided piggyback photography with as much as a 500mm lens, using the new feature further reduced guiding effort for photography. A minor irritation to some was that the PEC training was lost each time you turned off the telescope. There was, of course, a tradeoff between losing precious dark time and assuring that each PEC training session addressed the situations peculiar to that setup. The hand control box, optional on the initial units, was now made standard.

Efforts by Celestron to take in the comments of the meeting in 1987 produced what are fundamentally two of the best engineered 8 inch SCT made in the 20th centruy: the Ultima 8 and the Utima 8 PEC. These reliable telescopes featured comparatively massive Fork Mounts incorporating large bearings and a precision Byers worm gear drive set. The Ultima 8 base housed two cylindrical rechargeable lead acid batteries; this was a product first offered by Roger Tuthill as a retrofit for older telescopes. These telescopes had the capability to operate off external 12 volts DC sources, a wonderfully rigid and easy to adjust Equatorial Wedge. And yes, it had carrying handles on the Fork Tines and hand control knobs that could be operated even when wearing gloves. The provided 50mm Finder and the hard shell but light weight carrying case are still missed by us who recall these telescopes. The Ultima 8 PEC followed with some improvements, including the capability to operate off an internal 9 volt battery that is easy to find in stores, but not changed as easily as we'd like in a cold dark night. Celestron introduced "PEC" (Periodic Error Correction) circuitry with the Ultima 8 PEC telescope. These telescopes could be programmed by the user before starting to take astrophotos with an easy 4 minute recording cycle, this dramatically reduced the amplitude of periodic errors that occur when a telescope relies on a worm gear set for tracking. This meant the telescopes could take better images without spending the costs associated with larger and heaver precision worm gear and wheel sets. In a Sky & Telescope review of 8" Schmidt-Cassegrains, it was noted, "the Ultima 8's drive error was the least I have ever seen in a mass-market telescope." Astronomy Magazine said of the drive, "a textbook straight line" and "the PEC is impressive. It worked better than advertised." PEC would soon be offered in some third party Drive Correctors, while Meade and others would follow this path opened by Celestron.


DARE'S ORBITOR OR3900 SCOPE

JPG Orbitor OR3900 Picture
My most recent mini-telescope purchased in April 2004 from a liquidation store named XS-Cargo.  Since this particular model uses an alt-azimuth mount, it really is more of a 'spotting' scope than an astronomy telescope, but it is still great for 'quick looks' at anything, and the 1.25" eyepieces are interchangable with the Ultima ones above.

This is Maksutov-Cassegrain design, which is still 'catadioptric' but not a 'Schmidt-Cassegrain' like the Celestron Ultima:

Maksutov-Cassegrain-Telescope
Here are the specs from the catalog (with my own additions in italics):

Orbitor Model
OR3900
Optical Design
Maksutov-Cassegrain Catadioptric
Primary Mirror Diameter
96mm (3.78")
Clear Aperture
90mm (3.5")
Focal Length
1200mm (47.2")
Focal Ratio (photographic speed)
f/12.5
Resolution
1.29 arc seconds
Light Gathering Power
144x (5.4 magnitudes)
Visual Limiting Magnitude
12.3
Near Focus
3.5m (11.5')
Maximum Magnification
400x
Maximum Quality View Magnification
275x (actually 213x)
Secondary Mirror Obstruction
27.9mm (1.1") 9.6%
Standard Eyepieces Type
25mm/9mm (Plossl?) + 3x Barlow
Standard Eyepieces Power
48x/133x + 144x/400x
Finderscope Field Type
8x20mm
Finderscope Field of View
???
Telescope Dimensions
38cm x 18.5cm x 21.6cm (15" x 7.3" x 8.5")
Telescope Net Weight
4.2kg (9.2lbs)

The manual for this Chinese-made telescope does not mention the manufacturer, but I have determined that this Orbitor OR3900 is marketed by Citiwell International Inc..  They also market telescopes for National Geographic, which explains why this same telescope is sometimes seen with the National Geographic logo on it.

DARE'S IOPTRON SMARTSTAR-A MOUNT

JPG ioptron smartstar-a mount
Having lacked any sort of computer/GOTO/digital telescope control for my entire astronomical life (due to the high expense that historically occurred), I was very pleased to find a used iOptron SmartStar-A GOTO telescope mount on the useful Canadian AstroBuySell site in September 2009 -- and even better it was a fellow from my own province!



Here are the specs from the site (with my own additions in italics):
Mount Configuration Alt-Azimuth or Equatorial
Mount Color Astro Blue
OTA Connection Dovetail
Motor
Dual-Axis DC Servomotor, DC 12V
Motor Speed
Dual-Axis,9-gear,Electric (1x,2x,8x,16x,64x,128x,256x,512x,Max)
GO TO Controller GOTONova Model 8402-A
Database
80,000 Objects
GPS
Yes, 32-Channel
USB Port Yes
Protocol
ASCOM (responds to "LX200 Astro-Physics" in INDI i.e. 'indi_lx200ap' or 'indi_lx200generic' in Linux)
Firmware Upgrade Yes
PC Computer Control Yes
Payload
7-11 lbs, depending on tubes and attachments (3.2-5kg)
Tripod
1" Stainless Steel legs
Battery
AA x 8 (not included)
Weight
10.56 lbs (4.8kg)
Weight of mount
4lbs (1.8kg)
Width of mount at base
circular base with a diameter of 5.5" (140mm)
Width of mount at top 3.5" x 3.5" (89mm x 89mm)
Height of mount from bottom of circular base 8" (203mm)
Weight of Tripod with mount 3lbs (1.4kg)
Total Weight 10lbs (4.6kg)

DARE'S CELESTRON C90 SPOTTING SCOPE

JPG Celestron C90 model 52268
I was curious about the quality of the Celestron version of my 2004 'Orbitor' Maksutov-Cassegrain, especially considering that it was noted as having 'built-in' T-threads -- matching my Canon T1i and its T-ring adapter.  I purchased it as a used item on the useful Canadian AstroBuySell site in July 2011.  It works!

This is Maksutov-Cassegrain design, which is still 'catadioptric' but not a 'Schmidt-Cassegrain' like the Celestron Ultima:

Maksutov-Cassegrain-Telescope

Here are the specs (with my own additions in italics):

Optical Design: Maksutov
Aperture: 90 mm (3.54 in)
Focal Length: 1250 mm (49.21 in)
Focal Ratio: 13.89
Resolution
1.29 arc seconds
Light Gathering Power 144x (5.4 magnitudes)
Visual Limiting Magnitude 12.5
Finderscope: 8x21
Angle: 0 or 45
Eyepiece 1: 32 mm (1.26 in)
Magnification 1: 39 x
Carrying Case: Backpack made of nylon
Angular Field of View: 1.3
Linear Field of View (@1000 yds): 68 ft (20.73 m)
Linear Field of View (@1000 m): 23 m (75.46 ft)
Eye Relief: 20 mm (0.79 in)
Near Focus (Binoculars): 15 ft (4.57 m)
Optical Coatings: Multi-Coated
Tripod Adaptable: Yes
Camera Adaptable: Optional T-Adapter
Optical Tube Length: 16 in (406.4 mm)
Weight: 5 lb (2.27 kg)


DARE'S IOPTRON ZEQ25GT MOUNT

JPG zeq25gt After reading of the new amazing portable telescope mount from iOptron ($500 less than the previous IEQ30!), and waiting for positive reviews to roll in, I eventually decided to make the largest GOTO mount purchase of my amateur astronomy career -- the ZEQ25GT :)

Here are the specs:

Mount

"Z Balanced" Equatorial Mount

Payload

27 lb (12.3kg), exclude counterweight

Mount weight

10.4 lb (4.7kg)

Payload/Mount weight

2.60

Right Ascension worm wheel

Φ88mm, 144 teeth aluminum

Declination worm wheel

Φ88mm, 144 teeth aluminum

Right Ascension axis shaft

Φ35mm steel

Declination axis shaft

Φ35mm steel

Right Ascension bearing

Φ55mm ball bearing

Declination bearing

Φ55mm ball bearing

Worm gears

Brass

Motor drive

Planetary Gear Reducer DC servo with encoder

Resolution

0.14 arc seconds

Transmission

Synchronous belt/Gear

Latitude adjustment range

0 ~ 60

Azimuth adjustment range

 10

GPS

Internal 32-channel GPS

Polar Scope

AccuAligningTM dark field illuminated

Level indicator

Level bubble

Hand Controller

Go2Nova 8408 with 59,000 objects database

PEC

PEC

Tracking

Automatic

Speed

1,2,8,16,64,128,256,512,MAX(~4.5/sec)

Counterweight shaft

Φ20mm x 300mm (0.7 kg)

Counterweight

10.4 lb (4.7kg)

Tripod

1.5" Stainless Steel(5kg), optional 2"(8kg)

Dovetail saddle

Spring loaded Vixen-style

Power consumption

0.25A(Tracking), 0.75A(GOTO)

Power requirement

12V DC(9 ~ 15V), 1.5Amp

AC adapter

100V ~ 240V (included)

Serial port

Yes (on hand controller)

Autoguide port

Yes

Firmware upgrade

Yes

PC computer control

Yes (ASCOM)

Operation temperature

-10C ~ 40C

Warranty

Two year limited

 



APPLETS

HTML5 SIDEREAL CLOCK

My own contribution to a cross-platform web browser-based astronomy is an HTML5-based app named SidClock.

PNG sidclock equatorial PNG sidclock horizon
PNG sidclock moon
PNG sidclock
                    planets

LOCAL SKY MAP


current night sky over Morden
Sky map by AstroViewer
Get the HTML code for this sky map



LOCAL SIDEREAL TIME

Nice simple java applet to display the local sidereal time (LST) for Morden from the Java LST Clock website.

POLARIS FINDER

This nifty Adobe Flash applet is useful for setting the polar alignment of a telescope, and is from the Takahashi-Europe website.  1) Optionally click on the 'SYSTEM UT' to set the current time from your computer, 2) set the latitude/longitude to your own location ('Morden, Manitoba, Canada' is the default), set date/time (if you want different from your computer time), and 3) finally click 'CALCULATE' for the final plot.



JAVA PLANET ORBIT VIEWER

This cool java applet is named OrbitViewer and was written by Osamu Ajiki (AstroArts Inc.) and modified by Ron Baalke (NASA/JPL).  It can show you the orientation of the planets of our solar system for any date and scale that you want! Click here for a larger view.



JAVA APPLET PLANET FINDER


This java applet is named PlanetFinder and was written by Benjamin Crowell.  It is useful for identifying planets in the sky


JAVA APPLET SUN CLOCK

This java applet is named SunClock and was written by James Elliot. It is useful for tracking the day/night terminator on the Earth.
If you can see this text, your browser does not support Java, and you will not be able to see the SunClock applet.


JAVA APPLET YES CLOCK


This java applet is named yesClock and was written by Germaine Software. It is useful for showing where in the day you are rather than just the time.
 
JAVA APPLET MOON CALENDAR

This java applet is named MoonCalendar.  It is useful for knowing the phases of the Moon for the future month.

  CLEAR DARK SKY APPLET

Thanks to Attilla Danko for adding Morden to his Clear Sky Chart database!



DARK SKY MAP

PNG dark sky

CURRENT SOHO & SDO SUNSPOT IMAGES

JPG SOHO image

JPG SOHO
                      image

MORDEN SOLAR SYSTEM SCALE GOOGLE MAP

JPG table globe
Imagine shrinking the Earth down to the same size as a typical 12" (30 cm) diameter desk-top world globe (1:41849600). Now imagine using the same scale to shrink the entire Solar System, and overlay the size of the Sun, and the average orbits of the planets, as concentric rings centered on downtown Morden Manitoba, Canada -- using Google Map API V3 code based on Geocodezip and MapLabel

NOTE: The orbits of the planets are not perfectly circular (especially Pluto!) but the distance rings show the average distance from the planets to the Sun.

You can manually zoom in/out, and you can also chose between different background map types.

By the way, at this scale a single grain of table salt would be over 20 km (65 thousand feet) in height when placed on the globe -- about twice the height that commercial airlines fly :)

For an OpenStreetMap version of the same map, see here.


SUN RISE/SET GRAPH FOR MORDEN, MB

Using data for my city, and Gnuplot, I was able to create this Sun Rise/Set graph for the entire year at a glance.
PNG sun rise/set plot


HIPPARCOS CATALOGUE HERTZSPRUNG-RUSSELL DIAGRAM

Back in 1981, in my 2nd year of a university Computer Science degree, my friend and I decided to wite a program (in the 'APL' language, the only one we had available at the time to do 'graphics' plotting, and on 'paper' yet) to plot the famous 'Hertzsprung-Russell' diagram, which illustrates the correlation between  star luminosity and temperature.  I don't recall ever completing the job (owing to the tedious effort to enter all the data manually).  Now, 30 years later (2011), I finally took the time to extract the data from the Hipparcos catalog, clean and manipulate the data (down to 106509 objects), and use GNUPlot to plot the result -- and here it is!  My thanks also go to this page for approximating the plotting color to use for the various color spectra.  This page was also useful.

In this diagram, hot/bright/blue/giant stars live in the upper left, and cool/dim/red/dwarf stars live in the lower right.  White dwarf (hot/dim) stars are in the lower left, and red giant (cool/bright) stars are in the upper right.  Here is the Wikipedia article to help explain.  Our own Sun is a 'G2V'-type main-sequence star, which will live for approximately 10 billion years (about half of its current age).

PNG HR Diagram small

First cut: Get basic data from Hipparcos catalogue i.e. parallax, blue and visual magnitudes, and spectral type...

C.D.S.  -  SIMBAD4 rel 1.172  -  2011.03.01CET21:06:19

IdentList
----------

# | typed ident | coord1 (ICRS,J2000/2000) | plx |Mag B |Mag V | spec. type
------|---------------|-----------------------------|-------|------|------|-------------------
1 |HIP 1 |00 00 00.2158 +01 05 20.432 | 3.54| 9.52 | 9.08 |F5
2 |HIP 2 |00 00 01.0235 -19 29 55.823 | 21.90|10.8 | 9.0 |K3V
3 |HIP 3 |00 00 01.2059 +38 51 33.404 | 2.81| 6.587| 6.625|B9
4 |HIP 4 |00 00 02.0710 -51 53 36.765 | 7.75| 8.5 | 8.0 |F0V
5 |HIP 5 |00 00 02.3936 -40 35 28.328 | 2.87| 9.44 | 8.56 |G8III
6 |HIP 6 |00 00 04.4863 +03 56 47.248 | 18.80|13.64 |12.39 |M0V:
7 |HIP 7 |00 00 05.2825 +20 02 10.011 | 17.74|10.32 | 9.471|G0
8 |HIP 8 |00 00 06.5623 +25 53 11.258 | 5.17|10.13 | 7.3 |M7e
9 |HIP 9 |00 00 08.4775 +36 35 09.450 | 4.81| 9.66 | 8.60 |G5
...
Next cut: Remove header/trailer lines, and generate absolute magnitude and B-V color index...

1     |HIP 1          |00 00 00.2158 +01 05 20.432  |   3.54| 9.52 | 9.08 |F5                  |  1.83 |  0.44
2 |HIP 2 |00 00 01.0235 -19 29 55.823 | 21.90|10.8 | 9.0 |K3V | 5.70 | 1.80
3 |HIP 3 |00 00 01.2059 +38 51 33.404 | 2.81| 6.587| 6.625|B9 | -1.13 | -0.04
4 |HIP 4 |00 00 02.0710 -51 53 36.765 | 7.75| 8.5 | 8.0 |F0V | 2.45 | 0.50
5 |HIP 5 |00 00 02.3936 -40 35 28.328 | 2.87| 9.44 | 8.56 |G8III | 0.85 | 0.88
6 |HIP 6 |00 00 04.4863 +03 56 47.248 | 18.80|13.64 |12.39 |M0V: | 8.76 | 1.25
7 |HIP 7 |00 00 05.2825 +20 02 10.011 | 17.74|10.32 | 9.471|G0 | 5.72 | 0.85
8 |HIP 8 |00 00 06.5623 +25 53 11.258 | 5.17|10.13 | 7.3 |M7e | 0.87 | 2.83
9 |HIP 9 |00 00 08.4775 +36 35 09.450 | 4.81| 9.66 | 8.60 |G5 | 2.01 | 1.06
...
Final cut: Extract only the absolute magnitude and B-V color index, but also generate a numeric scale corresponding to the spectral type...

  1.83  35   0.44
5.70 53 1.80
-1.13 19 -0.04
2.45 30 0.50
0.85 48 0.88
8.76 60 1.25
5.72 40 0.85
0.87 67 2.83
2.01 45 1.06
3.74 36 0.44
...
Here is another plot using the 'color index' (B-V) data instead of the 'spectral class':
PNG HR diagram small   


SCHRONOS & SORRERY DIAGRAMS

PNG schronos image
This diagram is generated by a Python app I wrote named 'SChronos', which in turn was an interactive app named 'MChronos' I originally wrote for a Nokia N800 tablet.
PNG sorrery inner
PNG sorrery outer

These diagrams are generated by a Python app I wrote named 'SOrrery', which in turn was an interactive app named 'MOrrery' I originally wrote for a Nokia N800 tablet.


Return to Dare's Home Page

JPG TV
                  snapshot of Buster Baxter with his telescopeJPG TV
                  snapshot of Lisa Simpson with her telescope