Monday, May 12, 2014

Planets x3 as the weather moves from Winter to Spring

As the North Carolina weather moves from dry, large temp swings winter to the warm, moist and hazy spring I found a spell of settled weather the days of May 7th and 8th.  Starting with the 8th in this post I observed Jupiter, the Moon, Mars and Saturn.  The first time I've had three major planets in a single night in many years!

My Scope +Akule
Type: Custom Home Built Newtonian
Aperture: 356mm (14")
Focal Ratio: f/4.5 - 5x TeleVue Powermate at f/26 / 9,315mm EFL
Primary Mirror: Carl Zambuto 14" f/4.5
Camera: Point Grey Research Flea3 - FL3-FW-03S1M (monochrome)
Color Filter Wheel: True Technology UK (Tru-Tek) - SupraSlim with Visual Wide Wheel (built in diagonal)
Filters: Baader Planetarium LRGB Telescope Filter Set

Jupiter - not too shabby for being low and late in the season.

All the rest of this past, and quite productive Jupiter season (


All the rest of this season (

and the mighty Saturn sporting a 20 degree ring angle!

Here's last years collection (
Still working on this years! This is only the 3rd shot and 2nd with this camera.

The 7th's images are...

Mars' animation of nearly 1 hours worth of rotation

Final derotated image

And finally Saturn from the 1st night!

More of my Astronomy work on the main page:

Also these images were assembled in an automated fashion with some custom scripts in sikuli and python.  The total time in the stacking program AutoStakkert2 and the sharpening program AstraImage is seen in my Resucetime stats for the week:

4h 34m of automated AstraImage stacking and 3h 34m of AS2 stacking = 8hrs and 8min of time back in my life instead of babysitting mundane programs that made me bored out of my mind!  ;)  Yay for automation!  Basically it frees me up to surf reddit on my cell phone!  haha!

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