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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Tulip Nebula, the finalized project



I made a deeper view of the Tulip Nebula (Sharpless 101, Sh2-101) by adding some more exposure time.
There are now nearly 9h of H-alpha exposures integrated. I exposed couple of hours new O-III but most of the colors are from an older wider field image of mine.

Tulip Nebula, Sh2-101
in constellation Cygnus, click for a large image

Image is in mapped colors from emission of the ionized elements, Red=Sulfur, Green=Hydrogen and the Blue =Oxygen.

A detail from the image above



A microquasar Cygnus X-1
Shown in a starless image

I removed all the stars but the microquasar Cygnus X-1. It can be seen as a bright dot at upper right.
The curved bow shock structure can be seen in the image above, just left from the microquasar itself.

INFO
Source: NASA APOD

What happens to matter that falls toward an energetic black hole? In the case of Cygnus X-1, perhaps little of that matter actually makes it in. Infalling gas may first collide not only with itself but with an accretion disk of swirling material surrounding the black hole. The result may be a microquasar that glows across the electromagnetic spectrum and produces powerful jets that expel much of the infalling matter back into the cosmos at near light speed before it can even approach the black hole's event horizon. Confirmation that black hole jets may create expanding shells has come recently from the discovery of shells surrounding Cygnus X-1. The physical processes that create the black hole jets is a topic that continues to be researched.

Tulip Nebula in visual palette

Emission channels are composed to match to a visual spectrum.


H-alpha emission alone




A wide field image of the area

Colors for the new image are partly from this wide field shot. Original data can be seen HERE


Technical details

Processing work flow
Image acquisition, MaxiDL v5.07.
Stacked and calibrated in CCDStack2.
Deconvolution with a CCDStack2 Positive Constraint, 33 iterations, added at 50% weight
Color combine in PS CS3
Levels and curves in PS CS3.

Imaging optics
Celestron Edge HD 1100 @ f7 with 0,7 focal reducer for Edge HD 1100 telescope

Cameras and filters
Imaging camera Apogee Alta U16 and Apogee seven slot filter wheel
Guider camera, Lodestar
Astrodon filter, 5nm H-aplha
Astrodon filter, 3nm O-III
Astrodon filter, 3nm S-II

Exposure times
H-alpha 26 x 1200s = 8h 40 min
O-III 6 x 600s = 1h
S-II 6x 600s = 1h

A single un cropped, calibrated and stretched 20 min. H-alpha frame





Monday, October 27, 2014

A start of the new project, the Tulip Nebula



At night of 23.10 I managed to shoot 3h 20min H-alpha lights for the Tulip Nebula in constellation Cygnus.
It looks like we going to have a clear nigh ahead, I'll shoot more lights for the emission of Hydrogen and if possible, some data for other two emission lines, O-III and S-II.

I need some more signal to show better the area of Cygnus X-1, a black hole candidate. It's a strong source of X-ray emission and there are some interesting but kind of dim shock fronts around the X-1.  This microquasar is a brighter of two stars above the Tulip Nebula, just middle right at one o'clock position.

The Tulip Nebula
Click for a large image

The Tulip Nebula at H-alpha light only, 10 x 1200s.

Some optical analysis

I'm amazed about the optical quality of the Celestron Edge HD 1100 with a 0.7 reducer for the Edge scope.
The massive reducer seems to do some magic, since the whole image area of the massive CCD in Apogee Alta U16 camera (36,8 x36,8mm) gets filled with a pinpoint stars from corner to corner.  That shouldn't be possible, since the CCD is somehow larger, than the light path in Edge scope. See the image bellow.


As seen in the schematics, there should be some unusable areas at corners of the image. 

A single uncropped, calibrated and stretched 20 min. H-alpha frame


Image above is an uncropped, calibrated and stretched, frame directly from the camera. Even the very corners are filled with a pinpoint stars.

Analysis of the image field
With the CCDInspector software

There is some very minor tweaking needed for the perfect collimation. Otherwise the image field is nearly perfectly flat. One pixel is about one arcseconds in this analysis. 


Image corners as a closeup
Note. Images are from a single unprocessed, calibrated and stretched 20 min. H-alpha frame












Some very minor distortion can be seen, especially at image 2. That's due to some slight miss collimation. So large sensor is very picky about a correct distance (146,5mm), collimation and tilt.


Sunday, October 26, 2014

Cederblad 214, the second light photo for my new setup



The second light for the new setup, Cederblad 214 in constellation Cepheus. Once again, I was impressed about the needed exposure time. For a good S/N only 2h of exposures was needed for H-alpha. A good image scale (~1 arcsecond/pixel) and a narrow pass band is a good combination.


Cederblad 214 (Ced 214), NGC 7822, Sharpless 171
Click for a large image

Image is in mapped colors from emission of the ionized elements, Red=Sulfur, Green=Hydrogen and the Blue =Oxygen.

A closeup
Click for a large image

Pillar like formations of Cederblad 214

INFO
Source: NASA APOD

Towering pillars of cold gas and dark dust adorn the center star forming region of Sharpless 171. An open cluster of stars is forming there from the gas in cold molecular clouds. As energetic light emitted by young massive stars boils away the opaque dust, the region fragments and picturesque pillars of the remnant gas and dust form and slowly evaporate. The energetic light also illuminates the surrounding hydrogen gas, causing it to glow as an emission nebula. Pictured above is the active central region of the Sharpless 171 greater emission nebula. Sharpless 171 incorporates NGC 7822 and the active region Cederblad 214, much of which is imaged above. The area above spans about 20 light years, lies about 3,000 light years away, and can be seen with a telescope toward the northern constellation of the King of Ethiopia (Cepheus).


A study about shapes in the nebula

All pillar like formations are pointing to a source of ionization, the open cluster NGC 7822. There are some more dense areas in a gas, able to resist the radiation pressure from young star cluster. Those dense areas, at a tip of the pillars, are also potential places for the formations of the new stars.


An older wide field image of the area
"The Cosmic Question Mark"

The area of interest is pointed out with a white rectangle.
Info about this older image can be seen HERE

Technical details

Processing work flow
Image acquisition, MaxiDL v5.07.
Stacked and calibrated in CCDStack2.
Deconvolution with a CCDStack2 Positive Constraint, 33 iterations, added at 50% weight
Color combine in PS CS3
Levels and curves in PS CS3.

Imaging optics
Celestron Edge HD 1100 @ f7 with 0,7 focal reducer for Edge HD 1100 telescope

Cameras and filters
Imaging camera Apogee Alta U16 and Apogee seven slot filter wheel
Guider camera, Lodestar
Astrodon filter, 5nm H-aplha
Astrodon filter, 3nm O-III
Astrodon filter, 3nm S-II

Exposure times
H-alpha 6 x 1200s = 2h
O-III 3 x 600s = 1h
S-II 3x 600s = 1h

A single un cropped, calibrated and stretched 20 min. H-alpha frame



Friday, October 24, 2014

First light image, for my new observatory setup, finalized




This is an official first light for my new imaging setup. It's mechanically and optically much more advanced, than my old setup. It's also much more photon hungry due to good image scale, around one pixel/arcsecond.
For example, I needed only 2,5h of H-alpha exposures per panel to have a very good signal in this image.
This is a really capable set of tools for my art. 

The first light image

I selected a well known and popular target for the first light. It's so much imaged, than it's easy to make comparisons between my old images and others in the web. How ever, I wanted to have a little different view to this target and decided to shoot a two panel mosaic out of it. The idea was concentrated to the dark dust lanes and filaments in the area, not the eye catching gas formations itself.

The Pelican Nebula
in constellation Cygnus, click for a large image

Image is in visual spectrum from emission of the ionized elements. The original image is ~8000x4000 pixels.

Pelican Nebula in mapped colors
Click for a large image

Image is in mapped colors from emission of the ionized elements, Red=Sulfur, Green=Hydrogen and the Blue =Oxygen.

Vertical versions
Click for a large image





Orientation

The white rectangle shows the area of interest. Colors are also borrowed from this older wide field image.

Technical details

Processing work flow
Image acquisition, MaxiDL v5.07.
Stacked and calibrated in CCDStack2.
Deconvolution with a CCDStack2 Positive Constraint, 33 iterations, added at 50% weight
Color combine in PS CS3
Levels and curves in PS CS3.

Imaging optics
Celestron Edge HD 1100 @ f7 with 0,7 focal reducer for Edge telescope

Cameras and filters
Imaging camera Apogee Alta U16 and Apogee seven slot filter wheel
Guider camera, Lodestar
Astrodon filter, 5nm H-aplha

Total exposure time
H-alpha 2,5h / panel

Colorimages
Colors are taken from an older wide field image of the area.
The wide field image can be seen here:
http://astroanarchy.blogspot.fi/2011/12/cygnus-mosaic-18-panels-and-22-x-14.html