Amateur Astronomy from Edinburgh 2018-05-09T20:14:29+00:00

Amateur Astronomy from Edinburgh

This website is a place where I can post my images purely for the fun of it. You can find more information about the equipment I use on the About/Equipment page.

To give me something to aim for, I have set up pages to get as many Messier and Lunar 100 objects as I can. The Deep Sky page is for objects not in Messier’s catalogue and includes some more recent lists such as the Caldwell and Finest NGC catalogues.

Light pollution is a serious problem for amateur astronomy here on the edge of Edinburgh, Scotland, so this is a battle of photons vs sodium! Please come back and visit as the site develops, I make lots of mistakes, the weather gets worse and the skies get brighter.

I am a member of the Astronomical Society of Edinburgh and some of my pictures are displayed on their Flickr page.

Mark

Recent posts

Comet 21P/Giacobini-Zinner brightening and tail developing

17 August 2018|Comets, News|

Tail starting to develop and definitely getting brighter

Object ID 21P/Giacobini-Zinner
Details 2018-08-16 22:09:30 – 22:23:23 UT
Telescope 200mm Newtonian f5
Camera ZWO ASI290MC
Exposure(s) 20 x 15s, 30s delay between exposures
Capture SharpCap
Processing Nebulosity, Photoshop

Comet 21P/Giacobin-Zinner animation

4 August 2018|Comets, News|

Moving through the constellation of Cassiopeia

Object ID 21P/Giacobini-Zinner
Details 2018-08-03 22:12 – 22:25 UT
Approx. mag. 9
Telescope 200mm Newtonian f5
Camera ZWO ASI 290MC
Exposure(s) 20 x 10s exposures, 30seconds apart
Capture SharpCap
Processing Photoshop

21P gif animation

Saturn 1 day after opposition – infrared

29 June 2018|News, Saturn|

Very low and in the trees but just managed to image it – just…

Object ID Saturn
Details 2018-06-28 23:31 UT and 23:45 UT
Seeing III / V but very low altitude
Telescope 200mm Newtonian @f5 and @f10
Camera ZWO ASI290MC Infrared pass filter
Exposure(s) 60s 30fps AVI and 90s 30fps AVI
Capture FireCapture
Processing AutoStakkert3 (beta), Registax 6, Photoshop
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Lunar Mosaic in infrared 11.06 days

25 June 2018|Moon, News|

That annoying moment when you realise you’ve missed a tiny bit from the mosaic. Always better to overlap the frames more for safety. I though I was!

Object ID Lunar mosaic 7 frames
Details 2018-06-24 21:07 – 21:16 UT
Low down and seeing II (I-V)
Telescope 200mm f5 Newtonian
Camera ZWO ASI290MC
ZWO Infrared pass filter
Exposure(s) 7 x 60s AVIs, 20% stack
Capture FireCapture
Processing AutoStakkert, Photoshop
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Infrared Lunar mosaic

19 June 2018|Moon, News|

Put the 200P back on the mount to use with ZWO camera. Seems like a good combination – I’d forgotten what a nice telescope it is. I didn’t plan to do a full mosaic but didn’t realise just how close I was.

Object ID 7 frame incomplete lunar mosaic
5.12 days 33.6% illumination
Details 2018-06-18 20:24 – 20:41 UT
Poor seeing (over neighbour’s chimney smoke) and gusty conditions which shook the telescope occasionally.
Telescope 200mm f5 Newtonian
Camera ZWO ASI 290MC
ZWO infrared pass filter
Exposure(s) 7 x 60s AVI @ 20fps
Capture FireCapture
Processing AutoStakkert, Photoshop
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Sunspots 2018-06-13

13 June 2018|News, Sun|

The Sun has been very featurless for a while now but this just beginning to appear round the limb.

Poor seeing but testing out the new ZWO ASI 290MC. Getting a frame rate of almost 100 fps. Heavy processing required to get anything out of the turbulence. No matter how fast the frame rate, or how sensitive the camera, if the seeing is bad you still won’t get much.

Object ID Sunspots
Details 2018-06-13 09:58:05 UT
Poor seeing: I-II (I-V)
Telescope 180mm Mak-Cass at f15
Baader solar film – gives blue colour
Camera ZWO ASI 290MC
Exposure(s) 60s video at 97 fps ROI 800×500
Capture FireCapture
Processing Photoshop CC
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Noctilucent Clouds

2 June 2018|News, NLC, Other|

First sighting this year and one of the very earliest to appear on Twitter.

Venus at the bottom with Castor and Pollux above. ß Aurigae (Menkalinan) to the upper right.

Object ID Noctilucent Clouds
Details 2018-06-01
22:52 UT, 22:53 UT
Telescope Kit lens 27mm at f4
Fixed tripod
Camera Canon 600D
Exposure(s) ISO 400 1.6s
Capture In Camera
Processing Lightroom
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Observatory build

27 May 2018|News, Technique|

Old observatory going away, new observatory with Pulsar 2.2m short height dome going up on new wooden walls. The whole thing will sit on top of the remnants of walls from an old WWII air raid shelter. Watch this space…

The old run-off roof one lasted about 10 years without any signs of moving in some very strong winds (the previous 2 had roofs blow off into the field!). It did however leak pretty badly at the corners.

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Lunar First Light for new observatory

23 May 2018|Moon, News|

A quick First Light in broad daylight of the Moon through the Mak.

Object ID Moon
Details 2018-05-23 18:52UT 8.34 days 68.3%
Telescope 180mm Maksutov at f15
Camera Canon EOS 600D
Exposure(s) ISO 100, 1/100s
Capture In camera
Processing Processed in Lightroom
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Moon 1.41d 2.8pc illumination

16 May 2018|Moon, News|

The youngest Moon I have ever seen or imaged. Just 5 degrees above the horizon.

Object ID Moon
Details 1.41 days 2.8% illumination
5 degrees altitude
2018-05-16 20:39 UT
Telescope C80ED at f7.5
Camera Canon EOS 600D
Exposure(s) 1/60s
Capture In camera
Processing Processed in Lightroom
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Three Moon shots

9 May 2018|Moon, News|

Various Moon shots over the past few months. With my equipment dismantled for the observatory rebuild, this all I can do for now. Still fun though.

Object ID Moon
Details 3,26 days, 4.76 days, 8.35 days
Telescope C80ED at f7.5
Camera Canon EOS 600D
Exposure(s) 1/60s, 1/250s, 1/200s
Capture In camera
Processing Process in Lightroom

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Testing RC8 and 460EX on Mizar and Alcor

26 February 2018|News, Other|

Just for test purposes but quite fun. Focus not spot on though.

Object ID Mizar and Alcor
Details Double star(s) Ursa Major
Telescope RC8 at f/8
Camera Atik 460EX (-15C) and SX filter wheel
IDAS P2 LPR filter
Exposure(s) RGB 6x10s each 2×2
darks, no flats or bias
Capture APT, no guiding
Processing Stacked in Nebulosity, processed in Photoshop
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Orion and Running Man nebulae

14 February 2018|M31-60, Nebula, News, NGC Winter|

Red channel has poor focus.

Object ID M42,43 and Sh2-279
Details Nebulae, Orion
Mag. 4 Size 65’x60′
Telescope C80ED @ f5.6 (x0.75 reducer)
Camera Atik 460EX (-15C) and SX filter wheel
IDAS P2 LPR filter
Exposure(s) L 10x60s 1×1, RGB 10x60s each 2×2
darks, no flats or bias
Capture APT, finder guiding with PHD2
Processing Stacked in Nebulosity, processed in Photoshop and Lightroom
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Rosette Nebula C49 and NGC 2244

14 February 2018|Caldwell, Nebula, News, NGC Winter|

Had to discard the L channel as underexposed.

Object ID C49 Rosette Nebula and NGC 2244
Details Nebula and Open Cluster, Monoceros
Mag. 9 Size 1.3 degrees
Telescope C80ED @ f5.6 (x0.75 reducer)
Camera Atik 460EX (-15C) and SX filter wheel
IDAS P2 LPR filter
Exposure(s) RGB 10x60s each 2×2
darks, no flats or bias
Capture APT, finder guiding with PHD2
Processing Stacked in Nebulosity, processed in Photoshop and Lightroom
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Horsehead, Flame and Alnitak

12 February 2018|Nebula, News, NGC Winter|

First for a while. Far too few subs and poor focusing. Big reflection of Alnitak too.

Processed (very harshly to get anything out of it) in Nebulosity 3, Photoshop and Lightroom. Noise reduction very heavily used!

Object ID NGC 2024 Flame nebula, Barnard 22 Horsehead nebula
Details Nebula and Dark Nebula, Orion
Mag. 2 Size 30′, 8’x6′
Telescope C80ED @ f5.6 (x0.75 reducer)
Camera Atik 460EX (-15C) and SX filter wheel
IDAS P2 LPR filter
Exposure(s) L 2x60s 1×1, RGB 2x60s each 2×2
darks, no flats or bias
Capture APT unguided
Processing Stacked in Nebulosity, processed in Photoshop and Lightroom
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Jupiter and Mars conjunction 2018-01-7

8 January 2018|Conjunction, Jupiter, Mars, News, Other|

A very close conjunction.

Object ID Jupiter and Mars in conjunction
Details A very close conjunction, less than 14′ between the two planets. Poor seeing and very low altitude <15degrees
Date/Time 2018-01-7 05:47UT, Inset 06:03UT
Telescope C80ED @ f7.5
Camera Canon 600D
Exposure(s) 30s, inset 0.6s
no darks,  flats or bias
Capture APT unguided
Processing Processed in Photoshop


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