COPYRIGHT, PLEASE NOTE

All the material on this website is copyrighted to J-P Metsavainio, if not otherwise stated. Any content on this website may not be reproduced without the author’s permission.

Have a visit in my portfolio

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Grayscale Wonders part IV

All the photos, I have published, are taken with a grayscale astronomical camera. Each color channel is shot separately and then combined to RGB color image. Since I'm doing only narrowband imaging due the extensive light pollution color channels are are emission line images. Most of the time I'm capturing three emission lines hydrogen, sulfur and oxygen. (H-alpha, S-II and O-III)

Usually most of the details are in hydrogen alpha emission line. Gray scale images can be really beautiful and many times I personally like them best. I will publish now some of my images from this winter season as a grayscale compositions. This is a part IV of Grayscale Wonders, part one, two and three can be seen here: Part one, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/04/greyscale-wonders.html
Part two, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/04/grayscale-wonders-part-ii.html
Part three, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/04/grayscale-wonders-part-iii.html


Please, open the full size photo by clicking the image, it's really worth it!



Cederblad 214, the Cosmic Question Mark




Sh2-216 & Sh2-221 Supernova remnant and a planetary nebula



From the Bubble to Cave Nebula






Friday, April 24, 2020

All my photos from the Winter season 2020 in visual colors

I have published this image poster in mapped colors at April 15. 2020
It can be seen here, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/04/all-my-photos-from-winter-season-2020.html We have lost the astronomical darkness for about six months, up here 65 North.
Next time I'm going to be able to do the deep sky imaging will be at mid September 2020.

This time I'm publishing the same image set in visual colors.  Colors are combined from narrowband channels emission from an ionized hydrogen, sulfur and oxygen (H-alpha, S-II and O-III) are combined by following method;
Hydrogen and sulfur are both in red channel, oxygen has split between green and blue channel.

I was able to have my imaging system up and running very late, at first week of January 2020. I build my imaging system around an old Tokina AT-x 300mm f2.8 camera lens by mating the Apogee Alta U16 camera with it. Not an easy task due to very large CCD in Apogee camera and lack of back focus distance in Tokina lens.
I even used an angle grinder to shorten up the lens!
Some info and images about my imaging tools can be seen here, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/01/the-frankenstein-monster-my-current.html

I made a poster format presentation about all of my new photos from the Winter season 2020.
There are some very rare images from this imaging season. Photo 2 in poster might be the first three band image of this nebula pair. Photo 12 might be the first color image ever showing this area in sky. Boths targets are dim to extreme and lots of exposure time was needed even though I was using very fast optical configuration  (Under sampled optics, ~6 arcseconds/pixel)


Winter season 2020
A very large image, 3300 x 4800 pixels and 17 MB

All of the photos in this poster has been taken with the Tokina AT-x 300mm f2.8 camera lanes, Apogee Alta U16 astronomical camera and the Astrodon narrowband filter set. (5nm H-alpha, 3nm S-II and 3nm O-III) All photos have been shot from my down town observatory. Location is very light polluted, the sky quality is  Bortle scale eight!

IMAGE INFO
  1. Cederblad 214 and Sh2-170, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/02/new-photo-of-cederblad-214-cosmic.html
  2. Supernova remnant and a planetary nebula in a same field of view, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/04/two-ways-to-go-in-same-field-of-view.html
  3. From Bubble to Cave Nebula, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/from-bubble-to-cave-round-ii.html
  4. Supernova remnant CTB1, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/02/ctb1-supernova-remnant-in-cassiopeia.html
  5. Supernova remnant IC 443, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/supernova-remnant-ic-443-wide-field.html
  6. NGC 1499, the California Nebulahttps://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/01/a-deep-view-to-california-nebula-in.html
  7. IC 405 & IC 410, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/new-photo-deep-in-to-darkness.html¨
  8. IC 63 & NGC 281, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/ic-63-and-ngc-281.html
  9. Simeis 147, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/02/simeis-147-sh2-240-large-supernova.html
  10. Heart Nebulahttps://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/01/deep-in-to-my-heart-ic-1805-in-mapped.html
  11. C 1396, the Elephant's Trunk Nebulahttps://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/01/ic-1396-wide-field-reprocessed.html
  12. The Grande Mosaic of Aurigahttps://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/the-grande-mosaic-of-auriga.html
  13. Sharpless 205, NGC 1491 and  Lynds Bright Nebula 696, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/a-two-frame-mosaic-photo-of-sharpless.html
  14. The Grande Mosaic of Aurigahttps://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/the-grande-mosaic-of-auriga.html


Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Grayscale Wonders part III

All the photos, I have published, are taken with a grayscale astronomical camera. Each color channel is shot separately and then combined to RGB color image. Since I'm doing only narrowband imaging due the extensive light pollution color channels are are emission line images. Most of the time I'm capturing three emission lines hydrogen, sulfur and oxygen. (H-alpha, S-II and O-III)

Usually most of the details are in hydrogen alpha emission line. Gray scale images can be really beautiful and many times I personally like them best. I will publish now some of my images from this winter season as a grayscale compositions. This is a part III of Grayscale Wonders, part one and two can be seen here: Part one, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/04/greyscale-wonders.html
Part two, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/04/grayscale-wonders-part-ii.html


Please, open the full size photo by clicking the image, it's really worth it!


NGC 1491

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

All my photos from the Winter season 2020


We have lost the astronomical darkness for about six months, up here 65 North.
Next time I'm going to be able to do the deep sky imaging will be at mid September 2020.

This imaging season was different than before. I was able to have my imaging system up and running very late, at first week of January 2020. I build my imaging system around an old Tokina AT-x 300mm f2.8 camera lens by mating the Apogee Alta U16 camera with it. Not an easy task due to very large CCD in Apogee camera and lack of back focus distance in Tokina lens.
I even used an angle grinder to shorten up the lens!
Some info and images about my imaging tools can be seen here, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/01/the-frankenstein-monster-my-current.html

I made a poster format presentation about all of my new photos from the Winter season 2020.
There are some very rare images from this imaging season. Photo 2 in poster might be the first three band image of this nebula pair. Photo 12 might be the first color image ever showing this area in sky. Boths targets are dim to extreme and lots of exposure time was needed even though I was using very fast optical configuration  (Under sampled optics, ~6 arcseconds/pixel)



Winter season 2020
A very large image, 3300 x 4800 pixels and 17 MB

All of the photos in this poster has been taken with the Tokina AT-x 300mm f2.8 camera lanes, Apogee Alta U16 astronomical camera and the Astrodon narrowband filter set. (5nm H-alpha, 3nm S-II and 3nm O-III) All photos have been shot from my down town observatory. Location is very light polluted, the sky quality is  Bortle scale eight!


INFO
  1. Cederblad 214 and Sh2-170, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/02/new-photo-of-cederblad-214-cosmic.html
  2. Supernova remnant and a planetary nebula in a same field of view, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/04/two-ways-to-go-in-same-field-of-view.html
  3. From Bubble to Cave Nebula, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/from-bubble-to-cave-round-ii.html
  4. Supernova remnant CTB1, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/02/ctb1-supernova-remnant-in-cassiopeia.html
  5. Supernova remnant IC 443, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/supernova-remnant-ic-443-wide-field.html
  6. NGC 1499, the California Nebulahttps://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/01/a-deep-view-to-california-nebula-in.html
  7. IC 405 & IC 410, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/new-photo-deep-in-to-darkness.html¨
  8. IC 63 & NGC 281, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/ic-63-and-ngc-281.html
  9. Heart Nebulahttps://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/01/deep-in-to-my-heart-ic-1805-in-mapped.html
  10. IC 1396, the Elephant's Trunk Nebulahttps://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/01/ic-1396-wide-field-reprocessed.html
  11. The Grande Mosaic of Aurigahttps://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/the-grande-mosaic-of-auriga.html
  12. Sharpless 205, NGC 1491 and  Lynds Bright Nebula 696, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/a-two-frame-mosaic-photo-of-sharpless.html
  13. Great Mosaic of Cepheushttps://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/great-mosaic-of-cepheus.html
  14. Simeis 147, The Birth of Venus, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/the-birth-of-venus.html



Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Grayscale Wonders part II


All the photos, I have published, are taken with a grayscale astronomical camera. Each color channel is shot separately and then combined to RGB color image. Since I'm doing only narrowband imaging due the extensive light pollution color channels are are emission line images. Most of the time I'm capturing three emission lines hydrogen, sulfur and oxygen. (H-alpha, S-II and O-III)

Usually most of the details are in hydrogen alpha emission line. Gray scale images can be really beautiful and many times I personally like them best. I will publish now some of my images from this winter season as a grayscale compositions. This is a part II of Grayscale Wonders, part one can be seen here, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/04/greyscale-wonders.html

Please, open the full size photo by clicking the image, it's really worth it!



A two frame mosaic photo of Sharpless 205, NGC 1491 and Lynds Bright Nebula 696

Image details and a mapped color version can be found here, 
https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/a-two-frame-mosaic-photo-of-sharpless.html
nebula in visual colors can be seen here,
https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/sharpless-205-ngc-1491-and-lynds-bright.html


Great Mosaic of Cepheus


Image details and a mapped color version can be found here, 
https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/great-mosaic-of-cepheus.html

Great Mosaic of Auriga

Image details and a mapped color version can be found here, 
https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/the-grande-mosaic-of-auriga.html







Sunday, April 5, 2020

Supernova remnant IC 443 in visual spectrum



I have published this image in mapped colors at March 2, this time I have combined the narrowband emission channels so, that the result is very close to a visual colors.



IC 443, NGC 2175 & Messier 35
Click for a large image, it's worth it!

The red glow from an ionized hydrogen (H-alpha) is dominating the view, bluish hues are from an ionized oxygen (O-III)


H-alpha alone
Click for a large image

3h of light emitted by an ionized hydrogen, H-alpha.



INFO

IC 443

IC 443 (also known as the Jellyfish Nebula and Sharpless 248 (Sh2-248)) is a Galactic supernova remnant (SNR) in the constellation Gemini. It locates visually near the star Eta Geminorum at distance of about 5000 light years.
IC 443 may be the remains of a supernova that occurred 3,000 - 30,000 years ago. The same supernova event likely created the neutron star CXOU J061705.3+222127, the collapsed remnant of the stellar core. IC 443 is one of the best-studied cases of supernova remnants interacting with surrounding molecular clouds

NGC 2175

One of the reasons i took this image is the "Monkey head nebula", NGC 2175, at lower right corner.
I have shot this area with a much longer focal length back in 2015. At my image there is a very faint extended shape visible in my photo. I wanted to see, if I'm able to catch it with my current imaging system as well. This very dim feature is strongly visible in my new photo too! (Monkey head nebula is rotated 180 degrees in large image below.)



Older long focal length photo of NGC 2175 from Spring season 2015, more info here, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2015/03/ngc-2174-monkey-head-nebula-project.html


Technical details

Processing workflow

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
Tokina AT-x f2.8 camera lens

Mount
10-micron 1000

Cameras and filters
Imaging camera Apogee Alta U16 and Apogee seven slot filter wheel
Guider camera, Lodestar x 2 and an old spotting scope of Meade LX200
Astrodon filters,
5nm H-alpha 3nm S-II and 3nm O-III

Total exposure time 
H-alpha, 9 x 1200 s, binned 1x1 = 3 h
O-III, 3 x 1200 s, binned 2x2 = 1 h
S-II, 3 x 1200 s. binned 2x2 = 1 h


Saturday, April 4, 2020

Greyscale wonders



All the photos, I have published, are taken with a grayscale astronomical camera. Each color channel is shot separately and then combined to RGB color image. Since I'm doing only narrowband imaging due the extensive light pollution color channels are are emission line images. Most of the time I'm capturing three emission lines hydrogen, sulfur and oxygen. (H-alpha, S-II and O-III)

Usually most of the details are in hydrogen alpha emission line. Gray scale images can be really beautiful and many times I personally like them best. I will publish now some of my images from this winter season as a grayscale compositions.

Please, open the full size photo by clicking the image, it's really worth it!

Deep in the Heart Nebula

Heart Nebula in light of an ionized hydrogen, color image and technical details can be seen here, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/01/deep-in-to-my-heart-ic-1805-in-mapped.html


Supernova remnant IC 443

Color image and technical details can be seen here, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/supernova-remnant-ic-443-wide-field.html


IC 405 & 410


Color image and technical details can be seen here, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/new-photo-deep-in-to-darkness.html








Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Two ways to go in a same field of view, planetary nebula Sh2-216 & supernova remnant Sh2-221


I have reprocessed this photo from March 1 2020, now the composition is more dynamic and colors are more vivid. Original photo can be seen here, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/two-ways-to-die-sh2-216-sh2-221.html

This must be one of the dimmest targets I have shot. The supernova remnant Simeis 147 is large and dim but this nebula pair in Auriga is much dimmer. There are very few images about this target around. Photo is taken with Tokina AT-x 300mm f2.8 camera lens and Apogee Alta U16 astro camera.

Supernova remnant and a planetary nebula in the same field of view
Click for a large photo, it's worth it!

Mapped colors from the emission of ionized elements, R=Sulfur, G=Hydrogen and B=Oxygen.
Image spans about six degrees vertically!




Photo in visual spectrum
Click for a large photo


The red glow from an ionized hydrogen (H-alpha) is dominating the view, bluish hues are from an ionized oxygen (O-III)



H-alpha image
Click for a large photo

This grayscale image shows only the light emitted by an ionized hydrogen.


INFO

Sh2-216, the closest planetary nebula to earth ever discovered.

Image spans about six degrees horizontally, at left lays the large and very dim planetary nebula Sharpless 216 (aka Simeis 288, Marsalkova 44, LBN 742, GN 04.41.3)
This planetary nebula is the closest known planetary nebula to Earth, about 390 light years, and also one of the oldest known. Due the old age, it's very diffused, dim and large, apparent diameter is about 1,6 degrees. (Full Moon is about 0,5 degrees wide)

Supernova remnant Sh2-221

At right side of the photo lays a dim nad diffused supernova remnant Sh2-221 (SNR G160.4+02.8, HB9) it locates in constellation Auriga, about one degree West from star Capella. (Doesn't show in my image) The distance from the Earth, 2600 light years, is determined recently at 2007. This object was recognized as a supernova remnant back at seventies.


Technical details

Processing workflow

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
Tokina AT-x f2.8 camera lens

Mount
10-micron 1000

Cameras and filters
Imaging camera Apogee Alta U16 and Apogee seven slot filter wheel
Guider camera, Lodestar x 2 and an old spotting scope of Meade LX200


Astrodon filters,
5nm H-alpha 3nm S-II and 3nm O-III

Total exposure time 26h

H-alpha, 36 x 1200 s, binned 1x1 = 12 h
O-III, 33 x 1200 s, binned 2x2 = 11 h
S-II, 9 x 1200 s. binned 2x2 = 3 h



Orientation in Auriga






Tuesday, March 31, 2020

From Cassiopeia to Cepheus


This spring season I have shot wider field images with 300 mm f2.8 camera optics. Here are couple of panoramic mosaic images made by overlapping photos.

I do many of my mosaic images by shooting individual artworks pre planned so, that after few years I have overlapping photos from most of the area. Then I do some additional shots to fill the gaps.
My workflow is so constant, that very little or none tweaking is needed when it's time to joint the pieces together.


From CTB1 to Cave nebula
Click for a large mage, it's worth it!

CTB1 supernova remnant at upper left, Cave Nebula at upper right. Image is in mapped colors from a light from the ionized elements, hydrogen = green, sulfur = red and oxygen = blue.
Link to CTB1 image, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/02/ctb1-supernova-remnant-in-cassiopeia.html Link to Cave Nebula area photo, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/from-bubble-to-cave-round-ii.html


Even wider view
Click for a large mage


From Cassiopeia to Cepheus


Unfinished mosaic with Cederblad 214 (The Cosmic Question Mark)
Click for a large mage



Large mosaic photograph, shot between 2014 - 2020, 160h
Click for a large mage





Monday, March 30, 2020

IC 63 and NGC 281


I shot data for this image few weeks ago at 7.3.2020.  little over two hours for H-alpha light and only 20 min for both O-III and S-III. Beside that I took colors from my older longer focal length images of NGC 281 and IC 63. There is a reflection nebula component in IC 63 but in this narrowband image the blueish hueas are from an ionized oxygen, O-III.


IC 63 & NGC 281 
Click for a large image

Image is an visual colors from light of an ionized elements, hydrogen, sulfur and oxygen.



Orientation in Cassiopeia
Click for a large image




Older longer focal length photos 


IC 63
Click for a large image

Image details, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2017/01/the-ghost-of-christmas-past-ic-63.html

NGC 281
Click for a large image


Image details, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2014/11/ngc-281-siamese-fighting-fish.html









Saturday, March 28, 2020

The rise of Phoenixes, From Bubble to Cave Nebula


I have published this image in mapped colors couple of weeks ago, it can be seen here, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/from-bubble-to-cave-round-ii.html

This time I'll like to show this beautiful area near Cassiopeia in visual spectrum. Ionized hydrogen (H-alpha) glows deep red light. Bluish hues are from an ionized oxygen.

From Bubble to Cave Nebula
Click for a large image,

Image is in visual colors composed from narrowband channels. Red light from an ionized hydrogen is dominating the view. Object at lower left is known asharpless 157, at lower center lays the Bubble Nebula, it can be seen as a tiny red pearl in his vide field image. The bluish are at upper right ist the Cave Nebula.


Sharpless 157, a Zoom Out Series
Click for a large image, NOTE, 4500 x 1024 pixels!

I made a Zoom out serie about Sharpless 157. It's a complex region near the famous Bubble nebula and it's kind of large. There are not too many photos of it around. I have marked the apparent size of the full Moon in each image. The angular size of a Moon is about 0,5 degrees, that's 30 arc minutes.
This kind of image gives an idea, how complex and fractal the gas structures can be. there are endless amount of variations and new details at every zoom level and beyond. 

Technical details


The vertical image is taken with Tokina AT-x camera optics, Apogee Alta U16 astrocamera and Astrodon narrowband filter set. Info about my imaging system can be seen here,
 https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/01/the-frankenstein-monster-my-current.html
Some older parts of the photo are taken back in 2014 with QHY9 astrocam, Baader narrowband filters and Canon EF 200mm f1.8 camera lens.

Photo is taken from downtown Oulu, Finland. Due to an extensive light pollution I can do only narrowband imaging in my location. 
Total exposure time is around 20 hours.



Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Sharpless 205, NGC 1491 and Lynds Bright Nebula 696 in visual spectrum


I haven't seen any color photos out of those two large nebulae in this image, SSh2-205 at left and Lynds Bright Nebula 696 at right edge of the photo. The astronomer
Richard Perabo Wilds Helped me to recognize this object, many thanks for him! (NOTE, South is up.) I have publish a mapped color version couple of days ago, it can be seen here,  https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/a-two-frame-mosaic-photo-of-sharpless.html


Sharpless 205, NGC 1491 and  Lynds Bright Nebula 696
You really should click the photo to see the large image!

Visual colors from narrowband channels, H-alpha, O-III and S-II, red emission from ionized  hydrogen is dominating the view, there are some bluish hues from am ionized oxygen too. Star colors are from narrowband channels.



H-alpha channel alone
Click for a large image

This grayscale photo shows only the light emitted by an ionized hydrogen. (H-alpha)
I actually like grayscale photos very much, somehow they are much more delicate to the subject.

INFO

This must be one of the dimmest targets I have shot so far. There are very weak emission from the ionized oxygen and sulfur, so I was able to make a three band color composition.
There are lots of 20 min. sub-exposures, total exposure time for H-alpha emission is 25h, for O-III 9h and for S-II 9h. Total 43h from several nights between 28.02 and 21.03.
Total exposure time is 43 hours but the effective exposure time is much more 30 hours of of sub-exposures was taken as binned down to 2x2.  It means that four pixels act like a one pixel, the resolution drops to 1/4 from original but the signal is four times stronger. When binned down 2x2 the signal in 30 hours of exposure has as strong signal as in 120 hours of exposures at binning level 1x1!

My imaging system works better than I thought when I build it. Old Tokina AT-x 300 mm f2.8 camera lens, Astrodon narrowband filter set (H-a 5nm, O-III 3nm & S-II 3nm) and Apogee Alta U16 astro camera with 9 microns pixel size and 4096 x 4096 pixel CCD array. This gives me spatial resolution of about six arc seconds / pixel. Undersampling is a great thing, if you want to capture some very dim nebulae in relatively short time!

I was using my VARES imaging method to this photo. (VAriable RESolution imaging) All the high signal/noise elements, like stars and brighter parts of the nebula are from binning level 1x1. Lower signal/noise elements, like dim background glow and dimmer parts of the nebula clouds, are from binning level 2x2. Lower binning modes, like 4x4 or 8x8, was not used this time. There star field is way too dense at 300mm focal length when shooting at 6 arch seconds / pixel.

Orientation

This really is a large target, it spans about eleven degrees horizontally.

Sharpless 205 & NGC 1491
Click for a large image (~1300 x 1300 pixels)

Left half of the mosaic image above as an individual artwork.


An older long focal length image of  NGC 1491
Click for a large image

Image from Spring 2015, more info here, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2015/04/ngc-1491.html
NGC 1491 is a very dim target in Perseus. Original image from the Spring season 2015. Image is reprocessed, about twenty hours of new data added from the new wide field image. (Unpublished) Added data is very dim background glow from ionized hydrogen, sulfur and oxygen, it's pretty featureless so difference in resolution does no harm the image. The final photo is now deeper with better colors.


Technical details

Processing workflow

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
Tokina AT-x f2.8 camera lens

Mount
10-micron 1000

Cameras and filters
Imaging camera Apogee Alta U16 and Apogee seven slot filter wheel
Guider camera, Lodestar x 2 and an old spotting scope of Meade LX200
Astrodon filters,

5nm H-alpha 3nm S-II and 3nm O-III

Total exposure time 43 hours 
(30 hours was shot binned down 2x2, that gives equal signal as 120 hours of 1x1 binned exposures!)

H-alpha, 15 x 1200 s, binned 1x1 = 13 h
H-alpha, 21 x 1200 s, binned 2x2 = 14 h
O-III, 9 x 1200 s, binned 2x2 = 8 h
S-II, 9 x 1200 s. binned 2x2 = 8 h




Monday, March 23, 2020

A two frame mosaic photo of Sharpless 205, NGC 1491 and Lynds Bright Nebula 696


I think think this will be my last new photo for the Spring season 2020! Nights are getting very short up here 65 North.

I haven't seen any color photos out of those two large nebulae in this image, SSh2-205 at left and Lynds Bright Nebula 696 at right edge of the photo. (NOTE, South is up.) The astronomer
Richard Perabo Wilds Helped me to recognize this object, many thanks for him!


Sharpless 205, NGC 1491 and  Lynds Bright Nebula 696
You really should click the photo to see the large image!

Mapped colors from the emission of ionized elements, R=Sulfur, G=Hydrogen and B=Oxygen.


H-alpha channel alone
Click for a large image

This grayscale photo shows only the light emitted by an ionized hydrogen. (H-alpha)
I actually like grayscale photos very much, somehow they are much more delicate to the subject.

INFO

This must be one of the dimmest targets I have shot so far. There are very weak emission from the ionized oxygen and sulfur, so I was able to make a three band color composition.
There are lots of 20 min. sub-exposures, total exposure time for H-alpha emission is 25h, for O-III 9h and for S-II 9h. Total 43h from several nights between 28.02 and 21.03.
Total exposure time is 43 hours but the effective exposure time is much more 30 hours of of sub-exposures was taken as binned down to 2x2.  It means that four pixels act like a one pixel, the resolution drops to 1/4 from original but the signal is four times stronger. When binned down 2x2 the signal in 30 hours of exposure has as strong signal as in 120 hours of exposures at binning level 1x1!

My imaging system works better than I thought when I build it. Old Tokina AT-x 300 mm f2.8 camera lens, Astrodon narrowband filter set (H-a 5nm, O-III 3nm & S-II 3nm) and Apogee Alta U16 astro camera with 9 microns pixel size and 4096 x 4096 pixel CCD array. This gives me spatial resolution of about six arc seconds / pixel. Undersampling is a great thing, if you want to capture some very dim nebulae in relatively short time!

I was using my VARES imaging method to this photo. (VAriable RESolution imaging) All the high signal/noise elements, like stars and brighter parts of the nebula are from binning level 1x1. Lower signal/noise elements, like dim background glow and dimmer parts of the nebula clouds, are from binning level 2x2. Lower binning modes, like 4x4 or 8x8, was not used this time. There star field is way too dense at 300mm focal length when shooting at 6 arch seconds / pixel.

Orientation

This really is a large target, it spans about eleven degrees horizontally.

Sharpless 205 & NGC 1491
Click for a large image (~1300 x 1300 pixels)

Mapped colors from the emission of ionized elements, R=Sulfur, G=Hydrogen and B=Oxygen.


A 1:1 closeup from upper right corner
Click for a large image 

Full resolution detalji, NGC 1491 at middle up



An older long focal length image of  NGC 1491

Click for a large image

Image from Spring 2015, more info here, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2015/04/ngc-1491.html
NGC 1491 is a very dim target in Perseus. Original image from the Spring season 2015. Image is reprocessed, about twenty hours of new data added from the new wide field image. (Unpublished) Added data is very dim background glow from ionized hydrogen, sulfur and oxygen, it's pretty featureless so difference in resolution does no harm the image. The final photo is now deeper with better colors.

Lynds Bright Nebula 696
Click for a large image




Technical details

Processing workflow

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
Tokina AT-x f2.8 camera lens

Mount
10-micron 1000

Cameras and filters
Imaging camera Apogee Alta U16 and Apogee seven slot filter wheel
Guider camera, Lodestar x 2 and an old spotting scope of Meade LX200
Astrodon filters,

5nm H-alpha 3nm S-II and 3nm O-III

Total exposure time 43 hours 
(30 hours was shot binned down 2x2, that gives equal signal as 120 hours of 1x1 binned exposures!)

H-alpha, 15 x 1200 s, binned 1x1 = 13 h
H-alpha, 21 x 1200 s, binned 2x2 = 14 h
O-III, 9 x 1200 s, binned 2x2 = 8 h
S-II, 9 x 1200 s. binned 2x2 = 8 h




Tuesday, March 17, 2020

A rare image, Sharpless 205 and NGC 1491 in constellation Perseus


The imaging season is getting shorter up here 65N, in a  few weeks we run out of an astronomical darkness for about six months.

Sharpless lays high at South East at around  nine o'clock  I can shoot it about five to six hours before my view gets blocked by a punch of antennas and the wall. I have about six degree field of view in my current imaging system, the Sh2-205 and NGC 1491 next to it fits very well in my field.

This is a very dim target, undersampled optical configuration, binning and a longish integration time helps to bring out details and faint surrounding nebulosity. I haven't seen many photos about this target around. Total exposure time 18 hours. (Note! 15 hours of it was shot binned down 2x2, that gives equal signal as 60 hours of 1x1 binned exposures!)


Sharpless 205 & NGC 1491
Click for a large image (~1300 x 1300 pixels)

Mapped colors from the emission of ionized elements, R=Sulfur, G=Hydrogen and B=Oxygen.



H-alpha channel alone, labeled

Click for a large image

Image in light emitted by an ionized hydrogen (H-alpha emission line)





A 1:1 closeup




Full resolution detalji, NGC 1491 at middle up






An older long focal length image of  NGC 1491

Click for a large image

Image from Spring 2015, more info here, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2015/04/ngc-1491.html


NGC 1491 is a very dim target in Perseus. Original image from the Spring season 2015. Image is reprocessed, about twenty hours of new data added from the new wide field image. (Unpublished) Added data is very dim background glow from ionized hydrogen, sulfur and oxygen, it's pretty featureless so difference in resolution does no harm the image. The final photo is now deeper with better colors.



INFO


Sharpless 205 (Sh2-205) is a very dim emission nebula in constellation Perseus. The brighter peanut shaped area at the middle is known as Sharpless 205. 

NGC 1491 is a little brighter emission nebula that lays at upper right corner of the image. It has a distance of about 11.000 light years from Earth. A strong stellar wind from a star BD +50 ° 886 is blowing the gas away. The radiation from the star makes the gas glow by ionizing elements in the nebula.

Technical details

Processing workflow

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
Tokina AT-x f2.8 camera lens

Mount
10-micron 1000

Cameras and filters
Imaging camera Apogee Alta U16 and Apogee seven slot filter wheel
Guider camera, Lodestar x 2 and an old spotting scope of Meade LX200
Astrodon filters,

5nm H-alpha 3nm S-II and 3nm O-III

Total exposure time 18 hours 
(15 hours was shot binned down 2x2, that gives equal signal as 60 hours of 1x1 binned exposures!)

H-alpha, 15 x 1200 s, binned 1x1 = 5 h
H-alpha, 21 x 1200 s, binned 2x2 = 7 h
O-III, 9 x 1200 s, binned 2x2 = 3 h
S-II, 9 x 1200 s. binned 2x2 = 3 h







Saturday, March 14, 2020

From Bubble to Cave, round II


I have published a horizontal version of this image few days ago, it can be seen here, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/from-bubble-to-cave-nebula-area.html
This vertical version works too, it's little longer, than horizontal one. This area is part of much larger mosaic image of Cepheus, it can be seen here, https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/great-mosaic-of-cepheus.html


From Bubble to Cave Nebula
Click for a large image, 

Image is in mapped colors from a light from the ionized elements, hydrogen = green, sulfur = red and oxygen = blue.


Sharpless 157, a Zoom Out Series
Click for a large image, NOTE, 4500 x 1024 pixels!

I made a Zoom out serie about Sharpless 157. It's a complex region near the famous Bubble nebula and it's kind of large. There are not too many photos of it around. I have marked the apparent size of the full Moon in each image. The angular size of a Moon is about 0,5 degrees, that's 30 arc minutes.
This kind of image gives an idea, how complex and fractal the gas structures can be. there are endless amount of variations and new details at every zoom level and beyond. 

Technical details

The vertical image is taken with Tokina AT-x camera optics, Apogee Alta U16 astrocamera and Astrodon narrowband filter set. Info about my imaging system can be seen here,
 https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/01/the-frankenstein-monster-my-current.html
Some older parts of the photo are taken back in 2014 with QHY9 astrocam, Baader narrowband filters and Canon EF 200mm f1.8 camera lens.

Photo is taken from downtown Oulu, Finland. Due to an extensive light pollution I can do only narrowband imaging in my location. 
Total exposure time is around 20 hours.





Wednesday, March 11, 2020

From the Bubble to Cave nebula area


Yesterday I published a panoramic photo of constellation Cepheus, there is new material in upper left corner area of the panorama. I made an individual composition out of this interesting area, dark clouds of gas and dust are shadowing light from energetic emission areas. Bubble Nebula can be seen as tiny pearl like formation at middle left. Near the Bubble lays much large Sharpless 157, thae bright area at lower left. Cave Nebula is located to upper right area of the photo.

From Bubble to Cave
Click for a large image

Image is in mapped colors from a light from the ionized elements, hydrogen = green, sulfur = red and oxygen = blue.


Orientation
The area of the new image above is marked as a white rectangle.
Large image and information about this Great Mosaic of Cepheus can be seen here,https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/03/great-mosaic-of-cepheus.html

Technical details

Image is taken with Tokina AT-x camera optics, Apogee Alta U16 astrocamera and Astrodon narrowband filter set. Info about my imaging system can be seen here,
 https://astroanarchy.blogspot.com/2020/01/the-frankenstein-monster-my-current.html
Some older parts of the photo are taken back in 2014 with QHY9 astrocam, Baader narrowband filters and Canon EF 200mm f1.8 camera lens.

Photo is taken from downtown Oulu, Finland. Due to an extensive light pollution I can do only narrowband imaging in my location. 
Total exposure time is around 20 hours.