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Thread: Not Geocaching .... But Cool Anyway.

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
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    Here's a couple more of my favorites.

    Another example of simple astrophotography .... the moon through fog, making a halo. Although ALL haloes are actually raindow-colored, we usually don't see this with our eye. The colors are just too subtle to activate our color recepters. A 1-second exposure with a digital camera works just fine however. (My scope is set up now with a front-mounted piggyback, to keep the dew-shield from hogging the bottom of the image. The camera is so heavy that I had to use it on back until I was able to rig up a proper counterweight system, to keep from straining the drive motors):




    The next one is the only shot here which actually required a telescope. It's an SBIG CCD camera, at Prime Focus through the 12" scope. I thought it was neat because it shows the landing site of Surveyor7, right at the base of the crater Tycho. That's the one you can see with the unaided eye, which has ejecta rays stretching all the way across te Moon.

    A close-up like this will pracically eliminate the rays, although you can see a trace of them on the right side of the image. But these type shots reveal the inner structures of the craters.

    One curiousity here .... if you look right above the 1st "r" in "Surveyor", you can see what appears to be a scratch, or a canyon. That's actually just a mistake I made. This CCD magnifies so much that the FOV wasn't big enough for what I wanted here. So I took 1 exposure, then slewed the scope a bit to the North & immediately took another identical exposure. I then stitched the 2 together.

    This is almost impossible to do with 100% accuracy for 2 reasons, one of them preventable. The 1st is that there is so much fine detail on the Moon, as compared with most other celestial objects, that any amount of turbulence in the atmosphere will show up on the image also. Thus, no 2 images will ever be identical. That's NOT preventable.

    The preventable one is that a telescope has several different drive speeds to it, depending upon what you are tracking. "Sidereal" is the default speed, which is one revolution every 24 hours. That is to track non-moving stars, which are only moving because of the rotaton of the Earth.

    However, the Sun, Moon, & transient objects such as asteroids move at different speeds. Being as this was only about a 1/100th second exposure, I thought I could get away with NOT switching the scope over to "Lunar". But at this high magnification, it still caught the difference. The Moon is so fast (27 days to cover 1.5 million miles), even that slight 1/4 degree change in my scope's altitude produces an image a bit more tilted one way or another. So it's VERY hard to line 2 images up perfectly.

    Looking below the word "Surveyor", you can see where the image is blurred a little from lower-right to upper-left. I was able to process this blur out of most of the rest of the image by warping it. But here, near where the 2 images are stitched, I just couldn't manage to do it:


  2. #12
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by arkfiremedic
    Astrodav this is a beautiful picture. This would definitely worthy of framing. Any word on the First Annual Astrodav Astronomy Event?

    I assume you are talking about the AstroCache Event I mentioned a month or two back, possibly on Magazine.

    Not forgotten at all, just not the right time yet. But it IS time for me to start pre-planning, basically meaning consulting with the Magazine Park Staff about it. Being as we've had star-parties there before, I don't see a problem.

    But I think the prime time will be late September or any time October. Even early November would work, if we don't have a quick cool Winter. This would let the creepie-crawlie-flyee's thin out a bit & also keep it from being so hot & humid on us.

    And as far as the sky-event, the very best area for that is the summer Milky Way. Because of an ineresting little thing called precession, the "summer" Milky Way is now well visible even into December. Being as this will be geared as a day-time caching event, with the night part being a secondary add-on, then that part will be right at the beginning of night. So we'll till have plenty of time for that part of the sky, up until about midnight. A side-benefit is that the days will be getting shorter then, giving us even earlier time for that part to start up.

    Will let you know more as it gets closer. I'm sure we could make a really neat event out of this. And too, I've always wanted an event that has a major section allocated for night-caching .... say at least 3 of them set up. This type of event would provide a perfect excuse to do that.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    Fort Smith
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    Man, I so forgot about your hobby here. So should have talked shop with you. I have a degree in Physics with a specialization in astronomy.

    I'm looking forward to late July/Early August. there's going to be a triple conjunction of Mars, Jupiter, and Venus, and slightly farther away, Mercury to the Southeast.

    Then in mid August, literally as Mercury is going below the horizon, the triple conjunction will tighten up and be right next to a cresent moon.

    This site has a animation of it.

    http://www.shadowandsubstance.com/

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
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    Lower Arkansas
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ashallond
    Man, I so forgot about your hobby here. So should have talked shop with you. I have a degree in Physics with a specialization in astronomy.

    I'm looking forward to late July/Early August. there's going to be a triple conjunction of Mars, Jupiter, and Venus, and slightly farther away, Mercury to the Southeast.

    Then in mid August, literally as Mercury is going below the horizon, the triple conjunction will tighten up and be right next to a cresent moon.

    This site has a animation of it.

    http://www.shadowandsubstance.com/
    This is EXACTLY what I was going to say O.K. not really, but whatever you said it sounded cool. 2ter and I would love to come see some conjunctions with ya'll

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    Fort Smith
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    A conjunction is simply where planets and/or other objects appear to be very close to each other in the sky.

    It's been a while since this nice of a conjunction set has happened.

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