Backpacking Astrophotography

Yesterday afternoon I decided to do some simple astrophotography high up in the mountains. I chose the Cavalljoch as the view to the south is unobstructed. My backpack was way too heavy, but somehow I managed to trek from Schattenlagant to the Cavalljoch. The night was the darkest night I ever experienced. M13 was clearly visible with indirect vision with the unaided eye. Read More

M51 the Whirlpool Galaxy

After a long spell of clouds of rain, on sunday evening I took advantage of a few clear hours to get some more data on M51. This image is a combination of raw images from April 20th and May 10th. The total exposure time is now at 64 minutes.

32x120s, Nikon D7000, ISO1600, 127mm f/8 refractor

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Polarie first test

In preparation for an upcoming trip I am doing some equipment tests to prepare for the opportunity to observe from a dark sky.

It turns out even with the very rough polar alignment that is possible with the built-in peephole of the Polaire tracking mount 30 second exposures are possible with 180mm focal length on an APS-C camera:

3 x 30s – f/4 – ISO 1600, no darks, no flats, stacked with DeepSky Stacker, Nikon AF Nikkor 180mm f/2.8, Nikon D7000

This is the ful frame:

  

detail of the image above: Read More

winter galaxies

Winter is not normally a good time for galaxies because the Milky Way is porminent in the sky, but while waiting for comet Lovejoy to rise, I used the time to spend a little exposure time on some bright galaxies.

The Leo Triplet

Leo Triplet Read More