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11/30/-1
    
Thursday, September 24th, 2009
Tonight was a late start. I was originally going to shoot IC 1848, but after seeing the subs, I changed my mind. I didn't want another object that would likely be difficult to process so I switched to M45. Yay! Bright and easy. My speed right now. 8^) The sky looked pretty good, no clouds, clean and pretty dark with no smoke from the distant first in southern Oregon (unlike the other night). It dewed up on me pretty early into the session, but tonight was the first time trying my Kendrick dew heater on the ZS66 (the scope I was shooting through). So this worked out peachy. Nary a fuzzy halo and the rest of the gear was soaked.
Setup went pretty fast. 25 min from the garage to the open shutter. The ZS66 when guided via the R200SS requires only a rough polar alignment to produce pretty sharp, round stars. So a rough alignment it was and I was good to go.

[ADDENDUM]
So I went ahead and shot 3 hours of IC 1848 anyway. The nebula is mostly red which is what my stock camera is weakest at collecting. I'll get a CCD or modified DSLR one of these days and do this object again.

The Pleiades M45 Image
Tonight I went back to what I know and love. ISO 800, 5 min exposures. Saturation on these stars occurs pretty fast and I was going to shoot some short subs to blend in. But 3am came sooner then I expected and I was done for the night. Maybe I'll add some more short sub, low ISO data to see if I can debloat the ultra bright stars some and pull out even more star color in the background stars.

I'm very pleased with the amount of background nebulosity I was able to pick up. After looking at Tony Hallas' 7.75 hour CCD exposure, I realized that the background isn't dark sky, but blue nebulosity, so I worked the image for a long time to try and pull it out as much as I could.

Scope:
William Optics ZenithStar 66 SD @ f/4.7 w/WO 0.8x Flat II Reducer
Mount: Orion Sirius EQ-G with GoTo
Guiding:  Meade DSI Pro and PHD Guiding
Guide Scope:
Vixen R200SS 200mm
Camera: Canon EOS 20D (unmodified)
Special Settings: None
ISO: 800
Exposure: 2 hours - (24 x 300s)
Processing Software: Acquired in Nebulosity with high dithering, Stacked in Deep Sky Stacker (Kappa-Sigma Clipping for all frames), Levels, Curves, Astronomy Tools, Gradient XTerminator and Noise Ninja in Photoshop
Support Files: 24 flats, 24 bias, 24 darks
See Gallery below for image



The Soul Nebula IC 1848 Image
I've been waning to shoot this, but wasn't sure about how much signal I'd get. So this is my frist crack at it and I went for 3 hours. Even still, it's pretty weak. Makes me want that CCD or modified DSLR all the more.

Scope: William Optics ZenithStar 66 SD @ f/4.7 w/WO 0.8x Flat II Reducer
Mount: Orion Sirius EQ-G with GoTo
Guiding:  Meade DSI Pro and PHD Guiding
Guide Scope: Vixen R200SS 200mm
Camera: Canon EOS 20D (unmodified)
Special Settings: None
ISO: 800
Exposure: 3 hours - (36 x 300s)
Processing Software: Acquired in Nebulosity with high dithering, Stacked in Deep Sky Stacker (Kappa-Sigma Clipping for all frames), Levels, Curves, Astronomy Tools, Gradient XTerminator and Noise Ninja in Photoshop
Support Files: 24 flats, 24 bias, 24 darks
See Gallery below for image


Image Gallery For This Session
01 M45 2h WF 02 SoulNebula 3h
   

01-M45-2h-WF.jpg
Click picture above for larger version
If the picture seems too bright or too dark, try adjusting the brightness below.
Brightness:
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Comments:
On 10/07/09 at 05:05am Derek wrote:
I am very impressed with the amount of detail you got on the Soul Nebula with an unmodded camera. It looks great!Nice work!


On 10/04/09 at 06:53am dave wrote:
Thank goodness I could press on the "brighter" button....about 8 times!!!!

First thing I tried to image,last fall...and the results were stinko indeed !!
I think you did quite well on both shots,even if our IP politics differs a bit...you need the mod,by the way...(!!!)
PS good luck with DA...(!!!)

On 10/03/09 at 09:42am Miquel wrote:
Love the Pleiades!!! Beautiful young stars!!!

On 09/27/09 at 05:43pm Barry wrote:
Gotta have soul.........
It's just a bit subtle for my personal taste (but, that's just me. It is a very nice, clean, wide field shot. Looks VERY natural! Nicely done. It definitely has "soul".



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