Friday, December 19, 2008

Adding a Clear Sky Clock widget/screenlet to Linux

I had to spend some time on this one, but I'm very happy with the results.

I use Ubuntu Linux, but I'm sure this will work for any distribution that supports screenlets.

1) Install Screenlets - http://www.screenlets.org/index.php/Download

2) Add the Widget Screenlet via - http://www.gnome-look.org/content/show.php/show.php?content=70799&vote=good&tan=90243706

3) Create a new .html from the attachment and save it into the ~/.screenlets/Widget/widgets/ folder.  You may wish to edit the site for your specific location.  I had to browse the img source to find the proper URL.

4) Use screenlets to add the new CSC to your desktop and then change the widget to the newly created CSC.html file.

Also note that I set the widget to a meta refresh of 2 hours too!!!

ENJOY!

Mike

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Michael A. Phillips' Planetary Processing Routine version 7.0 Images




Michael A. Phillips' Planetary Processing Routine version 7.0

Was this tutorial helpful?

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    1. Introduction

    2. This is by no means a replacement to the tutorials I learned the most from such as Mike Salway's (http://www.mikesalway.com.au/2008/08/26/planetary-imaging-and-image-processing) or Paul Haese's (http://paulhaese.net/planetaryprocessing.html). I am simply tuning, tweaking and automating some of the steps to suit my own taste and hope you find some ideas here to use for yourself!


    1. Living document, I do plan in incorporating changes and suggestions over time and will reversion and date accordingly so please send feedback. Please critique, that's how we all get better!


    1. All the routines in this HowTo use applications running on Linux, even the windows only software packages run under Wine (http://www.winehq.org) running under Linux. All of the video screencasts are recorded and produced using applications running on Linux. I am confident that all software and processes detailed in this HowTo can be run on MS Windows with one exception. The capture software I use, Coriander, will run only on Linux. Even some of the bash scripts may be run under Cygwin (http://www.cygwin.com/) although I've not tried myself. Never fear, the main method of this HowTo still applies to users running on MS Windows.


    1. OK, HERE'S the SHORT METHOD!


      1. Run your Planetary captures through ninox (http://acquerra.com.au/astro/software/ppmcentre/)


      1. Move ninox sorted data through Registax


      1. Move Registax stacked data to Iris for RGB Combine and processing.

          Video Tutorials:



    1. Acquisition

      1. My equipment consists of

        1. I use a Celestron C8i SE (orange tube)

        2. Ubuntu 8.04 Linux and custom coriander (for firewire cameras)

        3. DMK 21AF04 (Firewire)

        4. 2.5x PowerMate

        5. Astronomik LRGB filters

        6. True Tek Color Filter Wheel with visu diag and PC serial cable (USB-to-Serial)

        7. some shots here:




















http://picasaweb.google.com/maphilli14/MichaelAPhillipsAstronomyEquipment#5244213374458800210

























http://picasaweb.google.com/maphilli14/MichaelAPhillipsAstronomyEquipment#5244213381800624706



      1. Once everything is connected up I follow the 'custom coriander 1.0.0' modified by Anthony Wesley (aka Bird - http://acquerra.com.au/astro/software/coriander/ ). This document is a work in progress and you may email me for a preview!

      2. After completing your captures you may move onto the next section that moves data from 'transit' to 'sorted'. It is important to note that this coriander outputs a static image stream not a .avi or video file. This saves me a step extracting the movie to images later on!






    1. Ninox

      1. I prepare all captured source images that are really .fit files by passing it through ninox (http://acquerra.com.au/astro/software/ppmcentre/) to sort and crop the images and then output to a new subdirectory called 'sorted' The full script is a bash script and can be found here:

      2. http://www.mediafire.com/?sharekey=2c029c78ccec6d383eb48d43a6cb8a62606ebfa4f4a2d337

        1. I'm working on a newer version of this script that will read the capture directories and use them to create all the sorted, ninox folders. Per these guidelines (http://maphilli14.blogspot.com/2008/01/tips-on-organizing-your-computer.html). When done I will revise this blog per v7.1 :)

      3. The key ninox syntax is:

        1. ninox -width=300 -height=300 -cutx=300 -cuty=300 -qestimator -qrenumber -outdir=Astronomy/Sorted/2-Scratch/Jupiter-$1/$2 /Astronomy/Transit/1-Corianders/$1/$2

          • This, “-width=300 -height=300 -cutx=300 -cuty=300” crops the images to a square 300x300 pixel size

          • This “-qestimator -qrenumber” sorts the data and renumbers the images based on quality

          • This “-outdir=Astronomy/Sorted/2-Scratch/Jupiter-$1/$2 /Astronomy/Transit/1-Corianders/$1/$2” allows me to specify a new folder in a sorted (not transit) folder for safer keeping. The $1 and $2 are the arguments passed to the script at runtime in which $1 is the ISO date that coriander writes ( IE 20081122) and $2 is the UTC time (IE 001122UTC).





    1. Registax

      • NOTE at as of 2008.12.12 - I was unable to get AviStack to load the .fit files that I work with.  A shame too as the batch mode looks VERY promising!

      1. Double Click for widescreen video or press the links below


        1. Widescreen version on YouTube is here - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GrFcvwTjdbI

        2. Full Resolution AVI (DivX 1280 x 768) version can be found here - http://www.mediafire.com/?sharekey=2c029c78ccec6d383eb48d43a6cb8a62606ebfa4f4a2d337

      2. Drag & Drop into Registax

      3. Switch align mode from “Default (single)” to none. No align, no reference.

        1. Locate a good cutoff point by moving the frame slider at the bottom left and right. Good frames are on the left and bad frames on the right. For example I typically stack the good frames on the 'left', typically 500 of the total 1500.

        2. Now hit the limit button to trim out the bad frames on the 'right' that will not be stacked.

      4. Notice that after hitting the limit button you will skip the Optimize tab and go directly to the stack tab. At the stack tab simply hit the stack button. Ninox has already sorted and aligned the data so there is no reason to have registax do it again. Some folks believe that ninox's alignment is actually better and or more efficient than registax's.

      5. After stacking you are at the wavelet phase. I typically apply 3 schemes much like a Small, Medium and Large drink sizing.

        1. No wavelets or a raw stack. This is my small wavelets scheme, denoted as R0.tif (Where R is the color, like R,G or B)

        2. Mike Salway's scheme (http://www.mikesalway.com.au/2008/08/26/planetary-imaging-and-image-processing) This is my medium wavelets scheme, denoted as R7.tif

          • 3 @ 10.5, 4 @ 15.2, 5 @ 16.5.

        3. And something I call Ice 150% Which is basically about 50% more than the medium scheme listed above. This is my v7 (large) wavelets scheme, denoted as R71.tif

          • 3 @ 15.2, 4 @ 22.6, 5 @ 24.6.























      1. Net net is that you've got to find a sweet spot for your optics, conditions and taste.

      2. If you save the files to the hhmmssUTC name (Up one folder when hitting the save button and has the numbered filter subdirectories under it), with the x7.tif filenames then you can use this bash script (http://www.mediafire.com/?sharekey=2c029c78ccec6d383eb48d43a6cb8a62606ebfa4f4a2d337) to slide the Registax files into Iris and back again in a pretty cool manner. When using this script, first verify the directory locations agree with your Registax and Iris working directories. This step is an optimization when working with many files and not completely necessary, as you can move the files manually.





    1. RGB combining in Iris.

      1. Download Iris (http://www.astrosurf.com/buil/us/iris/iris.htm) and set the Iris scripts and working path locations.

        1. File → Settings:


















        1. File Type to PIC

        2. Working Folder → “YOUR FOLDER” (such as C:\astronomy\temp\irisscratch 2000-01-01\)

      1. Loading a test file, File → Open. Find a file processed in Registax .tif format

      2. Load each channel into Iris

        1. Adjust visu levels via the thresholds

          • Move the top slider right towards 30,000+

        2. Set mono








        1. adjust wavelets (slight)

          • Processing → Wavelet...

        2. Save as new, R7.PIC in Iris' Working Folder location (C:\astronomy\temp\irisscratch 2000-01-01\)

      1. Iris LRGB (trichro) function to assemble as RGB

        1. View LRGB and set channels to:

          • Red: R7

          • Green: G7

          • Blue: B7

        2. APPLY! COOL!

        3. The section with video below details how to fine tune the alignment of the channels.

      2. Now lets look at how to automate this

        1. PART 1 Introduction

        2. PART 2 RGB Combine Options

        3. PART 3 Post Processing Options

        4. Set the Iris scripts and working path locations.

          • File → Settings:


















          • File Type to PIC

          • Script Path → “YOUR FOLDER” (such as C:\astronomy\permanent\scripts\iris\)

          • Place the planet.pgm (http://www.mediafire.com/?sharekey=2c029c78ccec6d383eb48d43a6cb8a62606ebfa4f4a2d337) file here C:\astronomy\permanent\scripts\iris\

          • Working Folder → “YOUR FOLDER” (such as C:\astronomy\temp\irisscratch 2000-01-01\)

          • Copy the file names R7.tif (Red Channel), G7.tif (Green Channel) and B7.tif (Blue Channel) to the Iris “Working Path” folder

        1. Bring up an Iris command prompt by clicking this button












        1. Now type the command, “run planet” VIOLA!!!

      1. Fine tuning of the separate RGB channel alignment:

        1. View LRGB and set channels to:

          • Red: R7

          • Green: G7

          • Blue: B7

        2. Apply

        3. Now set the step to 10

        4. Set the channel you wish to move via the radio button


















        1. Use the arrows in the upper right to move the channel around relative to the other channels.

        2. Change the Step value to something smaller or larger based on your needs

        3. When done, click OK

        4. Save as the format you like.





    1. Processing in Iris

      1. Wavelets

        1. Processing → Wavelets...

        2. Typically I apply a very small scheme such as....
















      1. Unsharp mask

        1. Processing → Unsharp Mask

        2. This can make the data over processed quickly so be careful. You will have an opportunity to remove noise or oversharpening in the next step













      1. Blur

        1. Processing → Blur Filter...

        2. Sometimes I add the full amount in the 1st run and have to run it again iteratively.







      1. Iris resize and or final visu levels - save as .bmp for sending to gimp (anyone know any gimp/iris compatible formats, let me know!) and .jpg for web

      2. There is a great whitebalance option available by using the mouse to select a portion of the image that 'should be' white.  Then in the command window type 'white'.  You may also tweak via the "View -> White Balance Adjustment".  The same can be done for setting a black background.  The video shows this well!

        1. I have another Iris script that runs here to save as a variety of formats. These then get picked up by the bash script waiting for us. The data then returns to the 4-TempStacked folder.

          • Run iris7 (savejpg “name” 1) etc...

    ENJOY and PLEASE COMMENT!!!






      MS Windows Addendum:

    Carried forward from my v5 routine.

        Batch .avi to .bmp conversion:

    Use VirtualDub to convert/extract the .avi video to .bmp still images:

    Download script here for windows: http://www.ericphelps.com/scripting/samples/VirtualDub/index.html

    Load job in Vdub

    Now back to Ninox Sorting in section 3

    all the Red, Green and Blue files are mixed in the same directory. Here's an example script to sort into subdirectories. My IC Capture filenames might not match yours, but have a look.

    Sort by rgb capture via bash script

    Bash script that sorts LRGB image series into sub-folders for organization and processing - http://www.mediafire.com/?2jmfkmxmnxe

    To be honest, I hate looking at the script now to figure out how to explain what it does.

    I recall chaning directories into the mess of RGB files and running this with the variables described in the top of the script!

    ENJOY and PLEASE COMMENT!!!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Random Lunar Craters on 2008.07.17


Object: Moon

Moon
Origin:ObservationManager - SolarSystem Catalog 1.0
ObserverMichael A. Phillips Mr.
SiteHome
Begin2008-07-17 um 23:00:00-05:00
End2008-07-17 um 23:30:00-05:00
OpticsC8i
EyepiecePowerMate (V=812.8)
FilterAstronomik LRGB Color
CameraDMK21AF04
Sitzung2008-07-17 um 23:00:00-05:00
Visual impression

  • CN Folks helped me in the post imaging idenification: http://www.cloudynights.com/ubbthreads/showthreaded.php?Cat=1,2,3,4,5,8,9,10&Number=2542753 #1 is Pythagorus (Rükl plate 2) #2 is probably Copernicus (Rükl plate 31)

References

Sessions: 2008-07-17 um 21:20:00-05:00

Begin:2008-07-17 um 21:20:00-05:00
End:2008-07-17 um 23:40:00-05:00
Weather:Forecast avg Actual: S:6-7/10 T:4/5
Equipment:C8i, 2.5x Powermate, Manual focusing, DMK21AF04, TruTek CFW with visual wide, and custom Coriander under Ubuntu 8.04
Comments:Started at 2120 with ISS observation through trees visually in front sidewalk. Cat cooler filter change and then 15min of cooling starting at 2140 Cat cooler for another 20 min before start of observing Setup near bird bath near front porch as there is a small opening in the trees in the SE of the sky Targets included Jupiter, Luna and Altair
>> Observations <<

Observer: Michael A. Phillips Mr.

>> Observations <<

Site: Home

Longitude:35.682°
Latitude:-78.743°
Timezone:UT-300 min
>> Observations <<

Optics: C8i

Type:SCT
Vendor:Celestron
Aperture:203.0 mm
Focal length:2032.0 mm
>> Observations <<

Eyepiece: PowerMate

Vendor:TeleVue
Focal length:2.5 mm
>> Observations <<

Filter: Astronomik LRGB

Typ:Color
>> Observations <<

CCD Camera: DMK21AF04

Vendor:The Image Source
Pixel:640x480

Bad Uranus on 2008.11.01

Observation logs
















Larger view

Object: Uranus

Planet
Origin:ObservationManager - SolarSystem Catalog 1.0
ObserverMichael A. Phillips Mr.
SiteHome
Begin2008-11-01 um 22:20:00-05:00
End2008-11-01 um 22:50:00-05:00
Seeing3 (fair)
OpticsC8i
Eyepiece15mm Celestron Plössl (V=135.47)
FilterAstronomik LRGB Color
CameraDMK21AF04
Sitzung2008-11-01 um 22:20:00-05:00
Visual impression

  • Visually: extremely visible and decernable disk @ 15mm eyepiece and higher power Photographically: all @ f/10 - prime focus 1st Red cap had wrong settings! use 2nd Lum too for moons - 1/2 full g and g darks for lums

References

Sessions: 2008-11-01 um 20:29:00-05:00

Begin:2008-11-01 um 20:29:00-05:00
End:2008-11-01 um 22:51:00-05:00
Weather:Forecast was S and T, both 4/5 Actual 5/10 and 5/5
Equipment:I used: Ubuntu 8.04 Linux and custom coriander 8" Celestron C8i SCT Lymax Cat Cooler DMK 21AF04 2.5x PowerMate Astronomik LRGB filters True Tek Color Filter Wheel with visu diag
Comments:Bad timing on Jupiter. Waited till after an early bedtime for the kids only to find Jupiter fairly low. I was happy about the weather and decided to take one last parting shot on ol' Jove before the season's end. I found it hanging above the trees and thought I had time. That was until the dec slips again. It seems that the weight of the CFW and camera kill the dec motors at around 20-30* of alt and below. I managed to get things working by pulling the offening equipment out until I got a partial align. They then cooporated after that. Focusing was hard as I've got a longer 1394 cable now. Got that as good as I could on Jupiter itself and then started an RGB coriander sequence. About 20 sec into the Red (1st channel mind you!) It slipped behind the trees. Oh well, next time! On to a recooling session with the cat cooler and the outer ice giants!
>> Observations <<

Observer: Michael A. Phillips Mr.

>> Observations <<

Site: Home

Longitude:35.682°
Latitude:-78.743°
Timezone:UT-300 min
>> Observations <<

Optics: C8i

Type:SCT
Vendor:Celestron
Aperture:203.0 mm
Focal length:2032.0 mm
>> Observations <<

Eyepiece: 15mm Celestron Plössl

Vendor:Celestron
Focal length:15.0 mm
Apparent field of view:14400.0′
>> Observations <<

Filter: Astronomik LRGB

Typ:Color
>> Observations <<

CCD Camera: DMK21AF04

Vendor:The Image Source
Pixel:640x480

Uranus and 4 moons on 2008.10.15

Observation logs

















With Labels

Large View

Object: Uranus

Planet
Origin:ObservationManager - SolarSystem Catalog 1.0
ObserverMichael A. Phillips Mr.
SiteHome
Begin2008-10-15 um 22:30:00-05:00
End2008-10-15 um 23:15:00-05:00
Seeing3 (fair)
OpticsC8i
EyepiecePowerMate (V=812.8)
FilterAstronomik LRGB Color
CameraDMK21AF04
Sitzung2008-10-15 um 22:30:00-05:00
Visual impression

  • Much easier to find as it's apparent size is larger. Visually it's more grayish-green than Neptune. After processing I found that Neptune and Uranus are very similar in color, photographically at least. RGB exposures are 1s and same Gain settings as Neptune 3min capture time per channel and resulted in about 174 frames per channel, best 100 used (estimate) Moons are at f/25 still, and were 4sec at full gain and 50% gamma

References

Sessions: 2008-10-15 um 18:45:00-05:00

Begin:2008-10-15 um 18:45:00-05:00
End:2008-10-15 um 23:30:00-05:00
Weather:Forecast called for S 4/5 and T 3/5 Actual S: 4-6 T: 2-3/5
Equipment:I used: Ubuntu 8.04 Linux and custom coriander 8" Celestron C8i SCT DMK 21AF04 2.5x PowerMate Astronomik LRGB filters True Tek Color Filter Wheel with visu diag Since the 3 day stretch of good seeing in early Sept, I have used the T61 Also used WinXP and IC Capture with the TrueTek Hand Controller for > 1sec exposures
Comments:To get Uranus and Neptune I had to move exposures beyond 1 second. Currently the custom coriander 1.0.0 does not support exposures beyond 1 second. Even at 1sec and 3.25fps I was unable to get usable data. As quickly as I could I switched to WinXP and IC Capture for camera control. A reboot and install of drivers burned some time, but a valuable lesson in prepareness. I did try to leverage previous whitebalance exercises on Jupiter for Uranus and Neptune. I found tracking and alignment horrible, but since finding 6-7mag planets isn't easy, I decided not to re-align. More and deeper exposures would have helped the moon shots.
>> Observations <<

Observer: Michael A. Phillips Mr.

>> Observations <<

Site: Home

Longitude:35.682°
Latitude:-78.743°
Timezone:UT-300 min
>> Observations <<

Optics: C8i

Type:SCT
Vendor:Celestron
Aperture:203.0 mm
Focal length:2032.0 mm
>> Observations <<

Eyepiece: PowerMate

Vendor:TeleVue
Focal length:2.5 mm
>> Observations <<

Filter: Astronomik LRGB

Typ:Color
>> Observations <<

CCD Camera: DMK21AF04

Vendor:The Image Source
Pixel:640x480

Astronomy - Solar System - Uranus




Friday, November 7, 2008

Luna - Albategnius crater 2008.10.08

Observation logs
















With labels

Large view


Object: Moon

Moon
Origin:ObservationManager - SolarSystem Catalog 1.0
ObserverMichael A. Phillips Mr.
SiteHome
Begin2008-10-07 um 19:50:00-05:00
End2008-10-07 um 20:00:00-05:00
OpticsC8i
EyepiecePowerMate (V=812.8)
FilterAstronomik LRGB Color
CameraDMK21AF04
Sitzung2008-10-07 um 19:50:00-05:00
Visual impression

  • Albategnius crater and nearby area were of visual interest without prior planning. This always makes it hard to find out what you photographed after the fact. I wanted to get a nice mosaic together, but it didn't work out that well. I picked the main crater for now.

References

Sessions: 2008-10-07 um 19:50:00-05:00

Begin:2008-10-07 um 19:50:00-05:00
End:2008-10-07 um 20:40:00-05:00
Weather:Haze and thin clouds S: 8/10 T: 1/5
Equipment:I used: Ubuntu 8.04 Linux and custom coriander 8" Celestron C8i SCT DMK 21AF04 2.5x PowerMate Astronomik LRGB filters True Tek Color Filter Wheel with visu diag
Comments:Not a night I'd normally be going out as a slow moving cold front was moving in and brought a great amount of humidity and haze. Seeing forecast was good so I eyeballed the skies near Jupiter and decided to take a stab at it, especially with an attempt at an Io transit too. (Missed that)
>> Observations <<

Observer: Michael A. Phillips Mr.

>> Observations <<

Site: Home

Longitude:35.682°
Latitude:-78.743°
Timezone:UT-300 min
>> Observations <<

Optics: C8i

Type:SCT
Vendor:Celestron
Aperture:203.0 mm
Focal length:2032.0 mm
>> Observations <<

Eyepiece: PowerMate

Vendor:TeleVue
Focal length:2.5 mm
>> Observations <<

Filter: Astronomik LRGB

Typ:Color
>> Observations <<

CCD Camera: DMK21AF04

Vendor:The Image Source
Pixel:640x480

Astronomy - Solar System - Lunar Gallery




A collection of all my Lunar Photos

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Jupiter 2008-10-01
















Full Size

Labels


Object: Jupiter

Planet
Origin:ObservationManager - SolarSystem Catalog 1.0
ObserverMichael A. Phillips Mr.
SiteHome
Begin2008-09-30 um 20:30:00-05:00
End2008-09-30 um 21:40:00-05:00
Seeing3 (fair)
OpticsC8i
EyepiecePowerMate (V=812.8)
FilterAstronomik LRGB Color
CameraDMK21AF04
Sitzung2008-09-30 um 20:30:00-05:00
Visual impression

  • Transit of Io. Poor seeing, but a good 45min+ time lapse imaging session shows the spot where Io is/should be.


References

Sessions: 2008-09-30 um 20:22:00-05:00

Begin:2008-09-30 um 20:22:00-05:00
End:2008-09-30 um 22:00:00-05:00
Weather:Forecast called for clouds. Surprisingly it cleared near dusk and stayed clear until a line of STRONG T-storms came in at 3am the same night. Seeing was avg or below 4-5/10 T: 3/5
Equipment: I used: Ubuntu 8.04 Linux and custom coriander 8" Celestron C8i SCT DMK 21AF04 2.5x PowerMate Astronomik LRGB filters True Tek Color Filter Wheel with visu diag
>> Observations <<

Observer: Michael A. Phillips Mr.

>> Observations <<

Site: Home

Longitude:35.682°
Latitude:-78.743°
Timezone:UT-300 min
>> Observations <<

Optics: C8i

Type:SCT
Vendor:Celestron
Aperture:203.0 mm
Focal length:2032.0 mm
>> Observations <<

Eyepiece: PowerMate

Vendor:TeleVue
Focal length:2.5 mm
>> Observations <<

Filter: Astronomik LRGB

Typ:Color
>> Observations <<

CCD Camera: DMK21AF04

Vendor:The Image Source
Pixel:640x480

M31 - Andromeda Galaxy via piggyback

Observation logs










Object: M31

Galaxy in And
Alias: NGC224, Andromeda Galaxy

RA: 0h 42m 44s
Dec: 41° 16' 06"
Size:178.0′ × 178.0′
m(vis):4.5 mag
Origin:ObservationManager - Messier Catalog 1.0
ObserverMichael A. Phillips Mr.
SiteHome
Begin2008-10-26 um 20:20:00-05:00
End2008-10-26 um 23:30:00-05:00
Seeing4 (bad)
OpticsTamron
LensZoom
CameraCanon XTI
Sitzung2008-10-26 um 20:20:00-05:00
Visual impression

  • Good visual check on main core area. Also showed well in a single 4 min exposure.
  • Visual rating: Simple conspicuous object in the eyepiece

References

Sessions: 2008-10-26 um 20:20:00-05:00

Begin:2008-10-26 um 20:20:00-05:00
End:2008-10-26 um 23:30:00-05:00
Weather:Clear, good transparency and no moon. Seeing was below avg.
Equipment:Canon XTi with Tamron zoom lens piggybacked on the C8i, MaxDSLR on WinXP T43 driven via RDP from inside the house
Comments:1st attempt at full remote setup. I found a tracking was good after a 2 iter 2 star eq align: Az: 00' 21" Alt: 06' 03" Good for 4+ min piggybacked exposures! No network coverage in the garage forced me to setup a quick, ad-hoc x-over network between WinXP and Linux. Static addressing on both ends and FAST transfers! :P
>> Observations <<

Observer: Michael A. Phillips Mr.

>> Observations <<

Site: Home

Longitude:35.682°
Latitude:-78.743°
Timezone:UT-300 min
>> Observations <<

Optics: Tamron

Type:zoom SLR lens
Aperture:50.0 mm
Focal length:200.0 mm
>> Observations <<

Lens: Zoom

Vendor:Tamron
Focal length factor:200.0 mm
>> Observations <<

CCD Camera: Canon XTI

Vendor:Canon
Pixel:3888x2592

Astronomy - Deep Sky - Galaxies




Friday, October 24, 2008

Neptune 2008-10-15

Observation logs

Object: Neptune

Planet
Origin:ObservationManager - SolarSystem Catalog 1.0
ObserverMichael A. Phillips Mr.
SiteHome
Begin2008-10-15 um 19:50:00-05:00
End2008-10-15 um 22:10:00-05:00
Seeing3 (fair)
OpticsC8i
EyepiecePowerMate (V=812.8)
FilterAstronomik LRGB Color
CameraDMK21AF04
Sitzung2008-10-15 um 19:50:00-05:00
Visual impression

  • Neptune rises 1st and is dimmer than Uranus.Unfortunatley this makes adjusting to an object much harder. Finding was not as hard as I was thinking it was. A simple Precise-GoTo got me within the ~60* FOV. I double checked against Stellarium and was amazed that there it was! I was even more amazed to see it as a smallish disk visually. It's very dim, bluish and small, but there it was! RGB settings: RG - 3.418sec exp ; 928 Gain B - 3.418sec exp ; 1024 Gain 90s capture time per channel at above settings. RGB x 4 iterations = 3 captures per 'session' x 4 sessions. Therefore each RGB channel gets 4x .avi's stacked together. Each 90s capture resulted in 24 frames x 4 'sessions' in total about 100 frames per channel, best ~75% used (estimate) Darks taken and applied in Registax Lum for moons settings: Clear Filter (IR/UV Block) - 3.418sec exp ; 1024 Gain ; 50% Gamma 58 frames total and ~30-40 stacked Darks taken and applied in Registax

References

SETI reference:




















Red Shift 5 Reference:









And CalSky reference:









Sessions: 2008-10-15 um 18:45:00-05:00

Begin:2008-10-15 um 18:45:00-05:00
End:2008-10-15 um 23:30:00-05:00
Weather:Forecast called for S 4/5 and T 3/5 Actual S: 4-6 T: 2-3/5
Equipment:I used: Ubuntu 8.04 Linux and custom coriander 8" Celestron C8i SCT DMK 21AF04 2.5x PowerMate Astronomik LRGB filters True Tek Color Filter Wheel with visu diag Since the 3 day stretch of good seeing in early Sept, I have used the T61 Also used WinXP and IC Capture with the TrueTek Hand Controller for > 1sec exposures
Comments:To get Uranus and Neptune I had to move exposures beyond 1 second. Currently the custom coriander 1.0.0 does not support exposures beyond 1 second. Even at 1sec and 3.25fps I was unable to get usable data. As quickly as I could I switched to WinXP and IC Capture for camera control. A reboot and install of drivers burned some time, but a valuable lesson in prepareness. I did try to leverage previous whitebalance exercises on Jupiter for Uranus and Neptune. I found tracking and alignment horrible, but since finding 6-7mag planets isn't easy, I decided not to re-align. More and deeper exposures would have helped the moon shots.
>> Observations <<

Observer: Michael A. Phillips Mr.

>> Observations <<

Site: Home

Longitude:35.682°
Latitude:-78.743°
Timezone:UT-300 min
>> Observations <<

Optics: C8i

Type:SCT
Vendor:Celestron
Aperture:203.0 mm
Focal length:2032.0 mm
>> Observations <<

Eyepiece: PowerMate

Vendor:TeleVue
Focal length:2.5 mm
>> Observations <<

Filter: Astronomik LRGB

Typ:Color
>> Observations <<

CCD Camera: DMK21AF04

Vendor:The Image Source
Pixel:640x480

Neptune Gallery




All Neptune photos since 2006

Mike Salway

http://www.mikesalway.com.au/
Mike Salway is an astounding Amateur Astronomer in Australia. Very helpful and knowledgeable!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Jupiter 2008-10-15

Observation logs













Object: Jupiter

Planet
Origin:ObservationManager - SolarSystem Catalog 1.0
ObserverMichael A. Phillips Mr.
SiteHome
Begin2008-10-15 um 19:00:00-05:00
End2008-10-15 um 19:55:00-05:00
Seeing3 (fair)
OpticsC8i
EyepiecePowerMate (V=812.8)
FilterAstronomik LRGB Color
CameraDMK21AF04
Sitzung2008-10-15 um 19:00:00-05:00
Visual impression

  • Seeing was not as good as the previous night. I did spend some time on processing and aligning the moon Io. Make sure you zoom in to check it out, it's a tiny little 1+ arc sec disk!

References

Sessions: 2008-10-15 um 18:45:00-05:00

Begin:2008-10-15 um 18:45:00-05:00
End:2008-10-15 um 23:30:00-05:00
Weather:Forecast called for S 4/5 and T 3/5 Actual S: 4-6 T: 2-3/5
Equipment:I used: Ubuntu 8.04 Linux and custom coriander 8" Celestron C8i SCT DMK 21AF04 2.5x PowerMate Astronomik LRGB filters True Tek Color Filter Wheel with visu diag Since the 3 day stretch of good seeing in early Sept, I have used the T61 Also used WinXP and IC Capture with the TrueTek Hand Controller for > 1sec exposures
Comments:To get Uranus and Neptune I had to move exposures beyond 1 second. Currently the custom coriander 1.0.0 does not support exposures beyond 1 second. Even at 1sec and 3.25fps I was unable to get usable data. As quickly as I could I switched to WinXP and IC Capture for camera control. A reboot and install of drivers burned some time, but a valuable lesson in prepareness. I did try to leverage previous whitebalance exercises on Jupiter for Uranus and Neptune. I found tracking and alignment horrible, but since finding 6-7mag planets isn't easy, I decided not to re-align. More and deeper exposures would have helped the moon shots.
>> Observations <<

Observer: Michael A. Phillips Mr.

>> Observations <<

Site: Home

Longitude:35.682°
Latitude:-78.743°
Timezone:UT-300 min
>> Observations <<

Optics: C8i

Type:SCT
Vendor:Celestron
Aperture:203.0 mm
Focal length:2032.0 mm
>> Observations <<

Eyepiece: PowerMate

Vendor:TeleVue
Focal length:2.5 mm
>> Observations <<

Filter: Astronomik LRGB

Typ:Color
>> Observations <<

CCD Camera: DMK21AF04

Vendor:The Image Source
Pixel:640x480
>> Observations <<
Created: 10/17/2008 23:15:32

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About Me

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Loving husband, proud father, computer geek, astro freak, music lover, sports nut and general fun-loving guy

I think I'm the kind of person who doesn't like strong opinions.  It doesn't matter if I agree with your opinion or not, it's not factual, it never will be 100% factual and I don't care for it.  That's probably why I hate politics.

I've always loved facts, provable facts of nature and things concerning science.  

Over time, I found that most facts are mostly reference and it was the creation of and discovery of new things that intrigued me.

"A good friend once told me you are our memory
without them we equal nothing
And all I can see is the place I wanna be
Suddenly my life was so free
Leaves at my feet, blown to the ground
their echoes are reaching my ears
Nights coming fast, suns going down" - A7x