Saturday, December 4, 2010

Jupiter with Ganymede Eclipse

Main site

This was night 4 of 4 and the current longest consecutive stretch of nights in a row.  I set out to capture Io emerging from transit at nearly the same time as a eclipse of Ganymede.  

One of the best RGBs that started the night off before the seeing really fell apart. (click image for high res)

One of the better red channels (click image for high res)

Here is the animation, which consists of 57 sub images.  Each frame is a separate 10s capture at 50fps.  I tried to set the frame rate in the animation at 25ms.  The capture duration is from 05:36 UT to 05:51 UT. 



Thursday, November 4, 2010

Jupiter Oct 23/24


Two nights of decent to above average seeing and a nice double transit weekend before last.

1st night had better seeing:  Oct 23, 2010

Great Red Spot

Io off limb

Io in transit and shadow on globe

Oct 24, Dual moon events:

Left to Right -- Ganymede, Io, Europa (under Ganymede's shadow) and Europa's shadow just on the right edge...

By 0224UTC Io has disappeared behind Jupiter, but seeing improved such that Europa is clearly defined and it's shadow has moved further towards the center

Sunday, October 31, 2010


Most largemouth are caught at the local club (Durham County Wildlife Club)
Trout are from various location in the NC mountains

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Comet 103P/Hartley Motion Animation Oct 8, 2010 (!!17MB GIF !!)

I'm still struggling on how to process the comet against a static, but separately processed stellar field.  Here's a cool effect, 2 minute sub exposures times 32 quantity.  Spanning ~100 minutes of time (small dithering time in between each sub and some tossed subs).

Warning, this file is 17MB

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Time lapse Europa transit

This is an 11 frame sequence where each frame, of red only, consists of 10sec or 400 - 500 frame stack.  Each frame is taken back to back so, 11 frames x 10sec per frame = 110seconds or just shy of 2 minutes of rotation time.  Each of the 10 motion frames are displayed for 100ms or 0.1sec, the last one is held for 1second.  This means that 10frames x 0.1sec = 1second of time per 'spin'

So, long story short, in 1second you'll see nearly 2 minutes of Jupiter's rotation, that's over 100 times normal speed.

What's really interesting is how far the moon and shadow move in only 2 minutes.  This is taken with my Celestron C8, 2.5x PowerMate and PGR Flea3.  EFL ~  5080mm or f/25.  The stacking and processing was done at 2x up-scaled and the final rendering in Gimp gets rescaled back to 1.5x or 150% sized.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Jupiter with Europa Transit near opposition

Seeing was good initially, poorer later, but I'm still sorting out the captures.

And another from later, where you can see Europa a bit better, as it's closer to the edge.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Deep sky work catchup #1

Be sure to click all thumbnails to see the larger view!

Super duper old one from 2009, but recently reprocessed and never posted

Old one from May


From the All nighter...



M24 - neat area near the galactic core with dark lanes


NGC 6755/6756

M71 - This one came out best, not sure why?!

Happened upon M2 and wasn't on my list!

Fall 2010

Crescent Nebula (This was a tough target, even at 2+ hr)

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Simple 30min M8 Lagoon Nebula

The whole of lower ecliptic is rarely above the trees in my primary observing location, so this was about it for a single night.  I really worked the processing with some tips from the fine folks at Cloudy Nights!

Click the thumbnail to see the full size

Check out the rest of the Messier 'Sprint' I'm working on while Akule is built!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Nice view of Jupiter's GRS and Jr!

Don't forget to click the image for a larger view!  This is from night 3 of 4 and the seeing wasn't quite as good as the night before.  Still, always nice to catch the Great Red Spot.

And don't forget to look at the rest of this season here

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Megan and Dad's Catch!

We were relocating a lizard from our unfinished storage to the creek near the main road and found not only tadpoles, but also small fish (not caught) and CRAYFISH! I had no idea they were happily living in the creek in my back yard!


Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Great view of the boring side of Jupiter

Seeing might have been best on night 2/4 last weekend.  Too bad it's the boring side, but I really could stare at this shot and let it soak in.

As always, the whole season is up here on my homepage!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Really old lunar photo but 1st flea3

Seeing wasn't so great, but at the time I was trying to experiment a bit and found a cool feature!  I'll have to revisit this when seeing is better!

3d Europa transit 20100828

Make sure you click image titles for a larger view.  They're fitted for the main page rss feed!

As Mitch Duke can attest to we've had some good seeing around here the past week. I attribute it much to a stalled high bounded by Hurricane Earl, which thankfully is only brushing our coast and not bashing it!

Anyway in a vain effort to compete with the world class images popping out of the wood work, I offer my humble 8" from night 1 of 4 ( a personal best).

I also grabbed some Uranus shots this night too, which I'm still assembling.

I will probably post the remainder of my work up on the new website: 

Be sure to try to trick your mind and or cross your eyes on this one as it WILL make the moon pop out in front of those shark tooth shapes in the sSEB.

                                              150% sized!

                                          Mono channels

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Uranus with 4 or 5 moons

You decide if I got elusive Miranda or not.  I found some Flea3 tips from Anthony Wesley that might help me net out a better set, including needed darks too!

Here's the mouse over version with NASA's JPL overlay.  It wasn't spot on aligned, so either I was off on the time or speed of light delay.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Witch's Broom Nebula

Ton's of great Astro weather here of late.  Here's the coolest Deep Sky Object I got from last night.  I got some other's and LOTS of Jupiter photos to get to, but thought this was worth a post of it's own!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Michael Alexander Phillips' Star

On December 25, 1993 I was given a gift of a International Star Registry star named Michael A. Phillips.

On July 2/3, 2010 I found and photographed it!

Here's the high-res photos and star charts.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Rings & Sonotube the 1st trial

Not the full weight, only about 23.5 lbs total for the rings and empty tube. The rings are about 6lbs and the tube is about 16.5lbs. The tube didn't fit as it's about 1in larger in diameter than the final product, which I hope isn't an issue for measurements and handoff to the aluminum fabricator. It's also a rough cut in half as the product was shipped in 12foot lengths, so it's about 6 feet instead of about 5 for the final. Just barely fits in the garage! Phew!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Saturday, July 10, 2010

4th of July 2010

Happy belated 4th. These are all from a neighbors display.
a variety of exposures, from 15-30s on a tripod.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Jupiter and GRS Jr 20100619 0910UT

1st image from my 2nd of the early season.  I really wanted sleep, but more good seeing in the SE USA and some clear skies for a change got me out of bed.  I tried to get the GRS Jr. and may have sharpend a bit too far.

Tell me what you think I caught going on near the GRS Jr.

Astronomy - Solar System - Jupiter (2010)

SEB seems gone at start of season. First opposition with the Flea3

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Late season Mars

Rescaled 2x using the 2.5x PM and the new(ish) Flea3!

Anyone know what that bright spot in the blue channel is near Arabia Terra?

Earlier shot doesn't show, must be some alignment or stacking error

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Flea3 tests on FW800 in Linux

Testing my PGR Flea3 FL3-FW-03S1M-C in Ubuntu 9.04 Linux on a DL380-G5 with the PGR FirePro FWB-PCIE-01 - 1394b PCI Express Card
With this setup I was able to achieve 102fps, 16bit (12bit stuffed) and the full frame size.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Happy 6th Birthday Jacob!

"Hey dad, guess what?"
"Chicken Butt?"
No Jacob's 6 years old today!

Left to Right:

Top: Birth, 5/14/2004 - 1YO 2005, 2YO 2006, 3YO 2007
Bottom: 4YO 2008, 5YO 2009, 6YO 2010, Birth, 5/14/2004

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