Tonight was clear enough for experimentation. The fog was high all night and ultimately rolled in making me turn in hours before I would have liked.
I had the gear out acclimating for a while and by the time I got out to it everything was very wet. Not a good sign.
Even still, the sky was essentially clear - that is, I could see stars, so I went ahead with the experiments.
I performed some Live View focusing tests on Polaris (1.96 Magnitude) with and without the 12nm Ha filter. The screenshots are in the gallery below. The bottom line is that Polaris is just visible without the filter and barely visible with the filter. In fact, with the filter, I needed to know where it was in the frame in order to get the magnified view of it.
More Hydrogen Alpha Imaging
The primary target tonight was the California Nebula with the Ha filter via the ZenithStar 66. 20 minute sub exposures and at least an hour of integration time (but hopefully 3). So the goal was met, but it would have been nice to get the 3 hours instead I only got 1.
The California Nebula NGC 1499 Image in H-alpha
I've been wanting to shoot this since I got the Ha filter, but we haven't had a clear night. Tonight was only good for a short time and I only got an hour on it. Even still, it turned out better then I expected. I was disappointed when I saw the frame come through with 3 satellites in it. I knew that I wouldn't get enough frames to get rid of the trails.
I was stunned at how much signal was acquired for only 1 hour. It's more and better signal then what was achieved in an hour with the MegRez 90 last year in the desert. Image here: Cali Shot 08.
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 1000D (modified) w/Astronomik 12nm Ha Clip In Filter
Special Settings: None
Exposure: 1 hour - (3 x 1200s)
Processing Software: Acquired in Nebulosity with Extreme dithering, Stacked in Deep Sky Stacker (Kappa-Sigma Median Clipping for all frames), Levels, Curves, Astronomy Tools, Gradient XTerminator and Noise Ninja in Photoshop
Support Files: 0 flats, 50 bias, 3 darks
See Gallery below for image