Astrophotography in Central Mass 

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Aldrich Observatory Construction

Published on 2015-10-26, by
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Full Moon Selfie

Published on 2015-10-25, by

 

 

When the moon is full, astrophotographers often have less than an enthusiastic response.  It tends to dominate the sky and wash out any hope of observing deep sky objects.  I used the beginnings of tonight to try out my new folding table–a  big step up from setting things on a Rubbermaid tub.  I figured another good use for the bright full moon was to illuminate myself and telescope for a selfie. I tried to hold pretty still for 3 minutes while the exposure unfolded.  The hope was to catch the star trails as they seem to revolve around Polaris (made more obvious with software enhanced diffraction spikes).

Full Moon Selfie

A man and his telescope

 
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Full Moon Negative

Published on 2015-10-25, by

The color negative of the full moon looks very similar to the moon during a total lunar eclipse.  This exposure (below) was taken with my 10″ f/4.5 Newtonian with a primary mirror figured and coated by Optic Wave Labs (OWL). I did very little in the way of processing the RAW file.  I ran the Noise Ninja plugin to cut down on the color noise inherent in DSLRs and to sharpen things up slightly.  Then I used Photoshop’s builtin color negative effect to invert everything.

LIGHT_Tv14000s_800iso_+79f_20151025-21h26m02s264ms_Negative

LIGHT_Tv14000s_800iso_+79f_20151025-21h26m02s264ms_Negative

 
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Glimpsing the Orion Nebula

Published on 2015-10-25, by

Since acquiring a telescope in January, I’ve been fascinated with online images of the Orion Nebula and wanted to see it for myself.  A few months ago, I viewed it for the first time through my 10″ telescope with an OIII filter in place while it was low above the horizon one morning.  It’s truly a wondrous object with inherent captivating beauty.

The trees in my yard have been a major obstacle blocking clear views of objects rising in the southeast and setting in the southwest. The night before last, Orion passed through a gap between two trees at just the right height for me to take some photos. In the end, 13 of them were suitable to be combined into a single image. I think it came out really well, all things considered.  The moon was bright and the sky wasn’t very transparent.  I pushed the Canon EOS 6D camera’s ISO about midway at 6400 and used the long exposure and high ISO noise reduction features.

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M42 - Orion Nebula

M42 – Orion Nebula

 

Charlie’s best astrophotos of 2015

Published on 2015-10-20, by
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Starlight Detectives

Published on 2015-10-21, by

Starlight Detectives Starlight Detectives: How Astronomers, Inventors, and Eccentrics Discovered the Modern UniverseAlan Hirshfeld; Bellevue Literary Press 2014WorldCatLibraryThingGoogle BooksBookFinder 

 
© 2015 Charles Kelley Stevenson