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Swansea Astronomical Society Blog

Friday, September 15, 2017

 

SAS on Bay TV

Howard Davies, the SAS Chairman received a call from Phil Hoyles requesting a news shoot for Bay TV. As he was going to the new observatory, Howard invited Phil and camera man Dave to come along and do the shoot.  Brian Stokes  and Brian Spinks were also there. The item should be aired on Monday night around 08:00pm on Freeview Channel 8 on Bay TV


Phil Hoyles and Co.


Sunday, September 10, 2017

 

The Sun in H-alpha light

September 1st. The best 70% of frames taken in Altaircapture with a GPCam and Lunt 50 solarscope. Stacked in Autostakkert! and finished in Photoshop CC.
Click on the image to get a closer view.

Anne Startup

Friday, September 1, 2017

 

The Sun in White light with a bridge camera

A static-tripod mounted Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ72 bridge camera was set to 60x optical zoom, ISO 100 and 1/1000s exposure at f/5.9. images were captured in bursts of 3. 135 images were precisely cropped in AstroCrop and then stacked and wavelet processed in Registax 5.1. The final image was post processed in the Gimp 2.9 all on a Linux Mint computer. Click on the image to get a closer view.


Steve Wainwright

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

 

The Sun and Moon on August 27th

A Solarmax ll, 60, BF15 H-alpha scope was mounted on a Celestron AVX mount. AstroDMx Capture for Linux was used with a Fedora Linux computer and a DMK21AU04.AS camera. Click on an image to get a closer view.


Using a 2x Barlow lens
AR2672

A Skymax 127 Maksutov was mounted on the AVX mount and a ZWO ASI120 MM-S camera, (kindly loaned by Derek Francis for testing the AstroDMx capture software) was fitted with a Schuler 850nm IR pass filter. Images of various regions of the 6 day, 35% waxing, crescent Moon were captured as SER files. The SER files were stacked in Autostakkert! 2.6 running in Wine, the images were stitched where required using Microsoft ICE running in Wine and wavelet processed using Registax 5.1, also running in Wine. The final images were post processed in the Gimp 2.9. Click on an image to get a closer view.


Craters Janssen, Fabricus, Metius. Vallis Rheita, Picolomini and Rupes Altai and Petavius.


Palus Somnii, Proclus, Crater Cleomedes, Marea Crisium, Fecunditatis and Tranquillitatis

Steve Wainwright


Saturday, August 26, 2017

 

The Sun in H-alpha light

 GPCam and Lunt 50 H-alpha scope were used to image the Sun. The best 20% of 1000 frames exposed for the surface and prominences separately. were stacked in Autostakkert!. The images were further processed and combined in Photoshop CC. Yellow filter was applied and the image was unsharp masked. Click on the image to get a closer view.


Anne Startup

Thursday, August 24, 2017

 

Circumsolar halo

This circumsolar halo was seen in Seattle, USA, with a skyscraper occulting the Sun. Click on the image to get a closer view.


Gaynor Thomas

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

 

Total solar eclipse from Casper, Wyoming, USA

Click on an image to get a closer view.
Diamond ring and corona

Inner corona and prominences

Corona

Nick Lewis
 

Total eclipse from Salem, Oregon, USA

Click on an image to get a closer view



Gaynor Thomas

Monday, August 21, 2017

 

The Solar eclipse from South Wales

A tripod mounted Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ72 bridge camera fitted with a Baader solar filter, was used to capture single images in a cloudy situation. First, the camera was set to automatic and maximum zoom to capture a full disk image showing AR2671 and a new sunspot group coming around the limb at 19:10 and at 20:07 the maximum partial eclipse was similarly imaged through a gap in the clouds. Clouds still partially obscured both images.
The location was Barry in South Wales where the forecast was favourable. In the event, the forecast was poor but the eclipse was still seen. Click on an image to get a closer view.




Steve Wainwright

Monday, August 14, 2017

 

Perseids with a Gopro Hero4

A Gopro Hero4 camera was used. It was set to take continuous shots of 30 second exposures all night.  Mounted on a gorilla pod with a skeleton housing, so we could attach a battery pack.  850 images were obtained. Click on an image to get a closer view.



Sandra Stewart
 

Perseid meteor peak from the Fairwood observatory

Saturday night, August 12th was an exceptional clear night at Fairwood and the display of Meteors was the best I have seen for a few years. 
Five people turned up at the observatory including a lady and her son with a 200mm dobsonian, who lent us a 2 inch to 1 1/4 inch adapter that enabled us to use our 12 inch SCT, and with little difficulty manually. 
A fine view of Saturn was obtained. After that, we observed M11, the Wild Duck cluster then M25, M8 Lagoon Neb and M31 the Andromeda Galaxy. 
We then returned to watch the Meteors which were falling one every few minutes and besides the Meteors, the Milky Way was a site to be seen, the best I have seen it for many a day. 
I am planning to hold another observing night around mid September when it will be dark earlier. I will post about this nearer the time.

Howard Davies

Sunday, August 13, 2017

 

71% waning, gibbous Moon with Linux

A ZWO ASI 120 MC camera was placed at the prime focus of an f/5.5, ED, 80mm refractor. AstroDMx Capture for Linux was used with a Linux Mint computer to capture a 5000 frame SER file. Autostakkert 2.6 running in Wine was used to stack the best 20% of the frames and the resulting image was wavelet processed in Registax 5.1. The final image was post processed in the Gimp. Click on the image to get a closer view.


Steve Wainwright

Friday, August 11, 2017

 

M27 with Linux

A ZWO ASI 120MM camera kindly loaned by SAS member Derek Francis for testing with AstroDMx Capture for Linux, was placed at the prime focus of an f/5.5, 80mm, ED refractor mounted on a Celestron AVX mount. Astro DMx Capture for Linux was used with a Fedora Linux computer. 23 x 30s, 16 bit RAW images exposures were captured of M27 with matching dark frames, and saved as 16 bit TIFF files. The  images were captured through a UV/IR cut filter as luminance data. The images were dark-frame corrected and stacked  in lxnstack, post processed in the Gimp 2.9 and Neat image. The final image was cropped in the Gimp. Click on an image to get a closer view.



Ten, 30s  images each were captured through red, green and blue filters, The images were stacked in lxnstack, combined in Andrew Sprott's AutoCAP, colour alignment processor, post processed, and the luminance data added in the Gimp 2.9


Nicola Mackin

Thursday, August 10, 2017

 

The Sun in H-alpha light

A Lunt 50mm, H-alpha solarscope was used. A GPcam was used to capture an AVI using Sharpcap 2.9 and stacked 40% of 1000 frames in Autostakkert!


Anne Startup
 

The Swan and the Moon

A ZWO ASI 120MM camera kindly loaned by SAS member Derek Francis for testing with AstroDMx Capture for Linux, was placed at the prime focus of an f/5.5, 80mm, ED refractor mounted on a Celestron AVX mount. Astro DMx Capture for Linux was used with a Linux Mint computer. 15 x 15s exposures were captured of M17 with matching dark frames and 50 x 20s exposures were also captured with matching dark frames. The images were all captured as 16 bit RAW and saved as 16 bit TIFF files. The images were dark frame corrected and stacked in Deep Sky Stakker running in Wine. The final image was post processed in the Gimp 2.9. Click on the image to get a closer view.


The 94% waning, gibbous Moon was rising, and as soon as it was visible from the imaging site, 2 x 5000 frame, 16 bit SER files were captured of two, overlapping halves of the Moon. The best 20% of the images in the SER files were stacked in Autostakkert 2.6 running in Wine and the two resulting images were stitched into a single image with  Microsoft ICE running in Wine. This image was then wavelet processed with Registax 5.1 running in Wine and the final image was post processed inthe Gimp 2.9. Click on the image to get a closer view.


Steve Wainwright and Nicola Mackin

Monday, August 7, 2017

 

97% waxing Moon

97% waxing Moon
Celestron 9.25 SCT AVX, ZWO ASI120MM, Moon filter, 2628 images captured in Firecapture 2.5x64, 500 stacked and aligned in AutoStakkert!2.3, wavelets in Registax 6, then edited in Adobe Elements 11.

Grimaldi, Lohrmann, Hevelius, Cavalerius

Schickard, Inghirami, Wargentin, Nasmyth

Kepler

Colin Miles

Sunday, August 6, 2017

 

The Sun in H-alpha light

An Altair GP camera was used with a PST H-alpha scope to image the Sun exposed for the disk and for the prominences. For each section the best 800 frames of 1000 frames were stacked in Autostakkert and merged in Photoshop. Finally, the two images were combined. Click on an image to get a closer view.




Anne Startup

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

 

The almost inactive Sun in H-alpha

A PST and an Altair GPCam were used to image the Sun in H-alpha light. Best 60% of 1000 frames were stacked. Top and bottom were stitched together with Photoshop CC. Unsharp masked and coloured also in Photoshop. Click on the image to get a closer view.


Anne Startup.

Monday, July 17, 2017

 

The ring nebula with a DFK and AstroDMK Capture for Linux

An f/5.5, 80mm ED refractor was mounted on a Celestron AVX mount. A DFK21AU04.AS camera was placed at the prime focus and AstroDMx Capture for Linux was used to capture 16 x 60s exposures of the Ring nebula as Tiff files, with matching dark-frames. The images were calibrated and stacked in Deep Sky Stacker running in Wine in a Linux Mint Laptop. The final image was processed in The Gimp 2.9 and Neat image. Click on the image to get a closer view.


Steve Wainwright and Nicola Mackin
 

Nebulae with a ZWOASI 120MC and AstroDMx Capture for Linux

An f/5.5, 80mm ED refractor was mounted on a Celestron AVX mount. A ZWOASI 120MC camera was placed at the prime focus and AstroDMx Capture for Linux was used to capture 50 x 25s exposures of M17 as Tiff files, with matching dark-frames. The images were calibrated and stacked in Deep Sky Stacker running in Wine in a Linux Mint Laptop. The final image was processed in The Gimp 2.9, Neat image and deLaboratory. Click on an image to get a closer view.


30 x 30s exposures were captured of M57 with matching dark-frames. The images were calibrated and stacked in Deep Sky Stacker running in Wine. The final image was processed in The Gimp 2.9 and Neat image.


Steve Wainwright and Nicola Mackin

Friday, July 14, 2017

 

The Moon and Saturn with a ZWO ASI120MM camera

Saturn with a mono camera
Celestron 9.25 SCT AVX, 2xTelevue Barlow, ZWO ASI120MM camera, 4378 images captured in Firecapture 2.5x64, 1000 stacked and aligned in AutoStakkert!2.6, wavelets in Registax 6, then edited in Adobe Elements 11


Mare Crisium, Proclus and Macrobius with a mono camera.
95%waxing Moon
Celestron 9.25 SCT AVX,  ZWO ASI120MM camera, 404 images captured in Firecapture 2.5x64, 150 stacked and aligned in AutoStakkert!2.6, wavelets in Registax 6, then edited in Adobe Elements 11


Colin Miles

Thursday, July 13, 2017

 

The Yearbook of Astronomy 2018 available for pre-order

The 2018 Yearbook of Astronomy is available for pre-order on Amazon

 Available for pre-order


Available for pre-order with a pre-order price guarantee




 

Drawing of AR2665

A 102mm refractor, F=1100mm was fitted with a Herschel wedge and a sketch of the sunspot group was made.
Click on the image to get a closer view.


Jim Startup

Sunday, July 9, 2017

 

AR 2665 with a Solarmax II, 60, BF15, a DMK and AstroDMx Capture for Linux

A Solarmax II, 60, BF15 H-alpha telescope was mounted on an iOptron Cube Pro, AZ, GOTO mount. A DMK 21AU04.AS camera fitted with the lens from a x2 Barlow was attached to the scope. A 5000 frame SER file was captured of AR 2665 and surrounding area, using AstroDMx Capture for Linux. Then the etelon was completely de-tuned from H-alpha revealing the sunspot group as it appeared in red light and a 5000 frame SER file was captured. The best 20% of the images in the SER files were stacked in Autostakkert! 3, and wavelet processed in Registax 5.1, both running in Wine under Linux Mint. The final images were post processed in the Gimp 2.9. An animation was made of the transition of the view of the active region from the photosphere view to the chromosphere view.
H-alpha image

Red light image

Animation of the transition from photosphere view to chromosphere view of the active region

Steve Wainwright and Nicolas Mackin

Thursday, July 6, 2017

 

The blank Sun with a PST

A GPCAM 1 video camera was attached to a PST H-alpha scope. The PST was tuned and focussed. 1000 frames of the top and bottom of the Sun were captured separately, of which the best 70% were stacked in Autostakkert! and photo-merged in Photoshop.
Click on the image to get a closer view.
Anne Startup
 

Terminator of the 91%, waxing, gibbous Moon with AstroDMx Capture for Linux

A Skymax 127 Maksutov was mounted on a Celestron AVX mount. A ZWO ASI120 MC camera was used to capture 7 overlapping panes of the terminator. AstroDMx Capture for Linux was used to capture 5000 frame SER files. The best 20% of the frames of each SER file were stacked in Autostakkert! 3 running in Wine. The 7 resulting images were stitched together with Microsoft ICE running in Wine and the final image was wavelet processed in Registax 5.1 in Wine, with post-processing being done in the Gimp 2.9.

Screenshot of AstroDMx Capture for Linux capturing one of the panes.

The whole 7 panel mosaic of the terminator. Click on the image to get a closer view.
Steve Wainwright and Nicola Mackin

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

 

Lunar studies with AstroDMx Capture for Linux

A Skymax 127 Maksutov was mounted on a Celestron AVX EQ mount. A ZWO ASI120 MC camera was placed at the Cassegrain focus and SER files of RAW 8bit images were captured with AstroDMx Capture for Linux. The best 25% of images were stacked in Autostakkert! 3 and wavelet processed in Registax 5.1, both running in Wine. The final images were post-processed in the Gimp 2.9. Click on an image to get a closer view.
New features of AstroDMx Capture for Linux were tested. This screenshot shows a reticle over the live image to help judge if drift is taking place.

This screenshot shows the reticle (which can be either red, green or blue) and over-exposure, Red indicators where the image is saturated. This allows the exposure to be set so that none of the image is saturated. The exposure is reduced until the red indicators disappear.

Sinus Iridum/Plato region of the Moon

Tycho/Clavius region of the Moon

AstroDMx Capture for Linux is now in its final testing run before release. After release, QHY and Atik cameras will be implemented.

Steve Wainwright and Nicola Mackin

Sunday, July 2, 2017

 

The quiet Sun in H-alpha light

A Solarmax II, 60 BF15 H-alpha scope was mounted on a Celestron AVX EQ, GOTO mount. A ZWO ASI120 MC camera was used with AstroDMx Capture for Linux to capture SER files of two overlapping regions of the Sun. The files were stacked in Autostakkert! 3, stitched with Microsoft ICE and wavelet processed in Registax 5.1, all running in Wine. Two images of the overexposed disk to show the small prominences were aligned in iMerge in Wine. The images were combined into a single image in the Gimp 2.9. Click on the image to get a closer view.

Steve Wainwright


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