More Astro

… hard to believe it’s almost been a year since my last post. This is something I should have posted 6+ months ago…

I spent some time late last year working with astro data that I acquired with iTelescope. After some initial work in DeepSkyStacker and Photoshop, I made the switch to Pixinsight for processing data. I feel like I’ve barely scratched the surface on this software, but thanks to the tutorials at Light Vortex Astronomy I was able to produce some images that I’m pretty happy with.

If you’re interested in the images, I’ve posted some of the work: Helix Nebula and wide field of the Cyrnus Loop over on my photo site.

First Astro Photo: Andromeda

Here’s my first astro image:

Andromeda/M31

When I discovered that I could rent a remote telescope online through iTelescope.net I couldn’t resist. So as a first attempt at capturing an image I used their T14 rig in New Mexico to capture our nearest major galactic neighbor, the Andromeda galaxy.

The image is an LRGB composite totaling 60 minutes of exposure taken on August 15 and 17, 2017:

  • 5 x 3min Luminance
  • 5 x 3min Red
  • 5 x 3min Green
  • 5 x 3min Blue

Using the darks and color flats that iTelescope provides for T14 I stacked each color set in DeepSkyStacker. Then I created the composite and post processed in Photoshop.

The video I used to learn about this process is below:

Astrophotography: Yet Another Hobby is Born!

Last week I stumbled across /r/astrophotography, and realized that many of those amazing astronomy photos I’ve seen online are actually taken by amateurs. I guess I’d assumed any photos of deep space objects were from Hubble or some professional observatory.

Since this discovery I’ve begun reading everything I could find about the field of astrophotography. I’ve found some amazing stuff, and will be posting some of the links. I think the thing that got me really excited was this technical talk by Charles Bracken:

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