Amateur Astronomy from Edinburgh2019-08-04T20:00:47+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 and webmaster of the Astronomical Society of Edinburgh and some of my pictures are displayed on their Flickr page.

Mark

Recent posts

M51 with synth G

23 February 2020|Galaxy, News|

Green channel was very noisy with horrible LP gradients in it so synthesised G from R + B. Still noisy though.

Object ID M51 Whirlpool Galaxy
Details Red channel 2020-02-15
Blue channel 2020-02-18
Telescope 250mm f4.8 OO Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX@15C
Baader RGB
Exposure(s) 15x180s ea RB
darks, flats, bias
Capture APT
Processing SIRIL (first time)
Photoshop
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WASP-104b

15 February 2020|Exoplanet, News|

Submitted to ExoClock project.

Object ID WASP-104b
ExoPlanet, Leo
Details 2020-02-06 22:11:27 UT
Telescope 250mm f4.8 OO Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX @-15C
Exposure(s) 237x50s 2×2 TR
Capture APT
Processing HOlomon Photmetric software

This fitting uses points with less scatter and is clearer to see.

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Heart of the Rosette NGC2244

6 February 2020|HOYS, Nebula, News|

Data taken for the HOYS project of NGC2244 in Hydrogen-Alpha. This was taken in strong moonlight but Ha images are much less affected. RGB was a non-starter with the Moon so strong.

Object ID NGC2244 Rosette Nebula HOYS 008
Details 2020-02-04
22:48:47 – 23:36:01
Telescope 250mm f4.8 Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX @15C
Exposure(s) 10x300s Baader Ha
bin 1×1, darks, flats, bias
Capture APT
Processing Nebulosity, Photoshop
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Exoplanet observation by imagination

21 January 2020|Exoplanet, News|

How do you observe Exoplanets when it’s cloudy? By imagination. I’m not an artist but I can use Photoshop, so here’s an Exoplanet “observation” by imagination. Just a bit of fun – and really not to scale – that would be boring!

FORTH-1b is the one closest to the star, far too hot for water and life, but FORTH-1c is in the Goldilocks zone, is about 1.2 times the Earth’s diameter and has a satellite. There are 2 gas giants further out.

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WASP-36b

21 January 2020|Exoplanet, News|

Second observation submitted to ExoClock project. Not such good data

Object ID WASP-36b
ExoPlanet, Hydra
Details 2020-01-18 21:56:26 UT
Telescope 250mm f4.8 OO Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX @-15C
Exposure(s) 58x180s 2×2 TR
Capture APT
Processing HOlomon Photmetric software
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Supernova SN 2020ue in NGC 4636

19 January 2020|Galaxy, News, Other|

Object ID SN 2020ue
NGC 4636
Details 2020-01-19 01:12:57 UT
Muniwin gives mag. as 12.56
RA = 12 42 47
DEC = +2 39 35
FWHM = 2.77 pxl
Sky = 1708.31 ADU
Sky dev. = 50.19 ADU
Net intensity = 94384.6 ADU
Noise = 271.5 ADU
S/N ratio = -25.4 dB
Brightness = 12.5627 mag
Error = 0.0031 mag
Telescope 250mm f4.8 OO Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX @-15C
Exposure(s) 5x120s 2×2 TR
Capture APT
Processing Nebulosity, Muniwin
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WASP-43b

19 January 2020|Exoplanet, News|

First observation submitted to ExoClock project.

Object ID WASP-43b
ExoPlanet, Sextans
Details 2020-01-18 00:10:30 UT
Telescope 250mm f4.8 OO Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX @-15C
Exposure(s) 62x120s 2×2 TR
Capture APT
Processing HOlomon Photmetric software
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Exoplanet X0-2 b

7 January 2020|Exoplanet, News|

Second attempt at an exoplanet. Dips in light curve caused by a moving dark patch in light train – possibly dust or condensation. Would be better data if not for that. Also target is over-saturated again.

Object ID Qatar-1 b
Details 2019-12-30 20:58:17 – 00:32:05 UT
Lynx
RA (J2000): 07 48 07, DE (J2000): +50 13 33,
V = 11.18 mag, dV = 0.0124 mag, duration = 162 minutes
Telescope 250mm f4.8 Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX -15C
Exposure(s) 216x50s TR 2×2 (probably oversaturated)
darks, flats, bias
Capture APT
Processing Nebulosity, AstroImageJ
Exoplanet Transit Database
http://var2.astro.cz/ETD/etd.php?STARNAME=XO-2&PLANET=b

JD mid:
HJD mid:  (helcor = 0.00491)
Duration:  minutes
Depth:  mag

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Qatar-1 b First Exoplanet

7 January 2020|Exoplanet, News|

Been on my list to detect exoplanets for ages and finally got around to doing it. The data is messy and needs to be improved but it does fit the transit. Target star is over-saturated so never going to be good.

Top line shows curve before detrending – probably due to airmass changes. Quite serious clarity variations during session.

Object ID Qatar-1 b
Details Draconis
2019-12-13 18:56:34 – 20:54:59 UT
RA (J2000): 20 13 32, DE (J2000): +65 09 43 ,
V = 12.84 mag, dV = 0.0204 mag, duration = 96.7 minutes
Telescope 250mm f4.8 Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX -15C
Exposure(s) 58x120s TR 2×2 (probably oversaturated)
darks, flats, bias
Capture APT
Processing Nebulosity, AstroImageJ
Exoplanet Transit Database
http://var2.astro.cz/ETD/predict_detail.php?STARNAME=Qatar-1&PLANET=b&PER=&M=

Qatar-1 b transit_FIT_plotter_residuals

JD mid:
HJD mid:  (helcor = 0.00041)
Duration:  minutes
Depth:  mag

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M1 Crab Nebula HOO

7 January 2020|M1-30, Nebula, News|

First time for this one in narrowband, just Ha and OIII

Object ID M1 Crab Nebula, supernova remnant
Details Size 420″ x 290″, Mag. 8.4
Taurus
Telescope 250mm f4.8 Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX -15C
Exposure(s) 10x300s Ha and OII 2×2
darks, flats, bias
mapped HOO
Capture APT
Processing APP, Photoshop
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IC405 Flaming Star Nebula HOO

7 January 2020|Nebula, News, NGC Winter|

Been trying to do this one for a while and finally got it.

Object ID IC405 Flaming Star Nebula, Caldwell 31
Details Size 37’x10′, Mag. 6.0
Auriga
Telescope 250mm f4.8 Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX -15C
Exposure(s) 10x300s Ha and OII 2×2
darks, flats, bias
mapped HOO
Capture APT
Processing APP, Photoshop
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IC349 Barnard’s Merope Nebula

7 January 2020|Nebula, News, NGC Winter|

Thought I’d try and get the Merope Nebula as the whole Pleiades don’t fit in my FOV. But saw a flaw beneath Merope which turned out to be another nebula.

Object ID IC349 Barnard’s Merope Nebula
Details Size 0.5′, Mag. 13
Taurus
Telescope 250mm f4.8 Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX -15C
Exposure(s) 3x180s ea RGB 1×1
darks, flats, bias
Capture APT
Processing APP, Photoshop
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NGC 2024 Flame Nebula RGB

5 December 2019|Nebula, News, NGC Winter|

Wasn’t expecting it to be clear so this is a bonus. Only managed 5 of each colour though so quite noisy and Alnitak overpowers eveything.

Object ID NGC 2024 Flame Nebula
Details Size 30’x30′, Mag. 10
Orion
Telescope 250mm f4.8 Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX -15C
Exposure(s) 5x180s ea RGB 1×1
darks, flats, bias
Capture APT
Processing APP, Photoshop
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M92 RGB

5 December 2019|Globular Cluster, News, NGC Summer|

Because sky conditions were very poor I went back to globulars as nebulosity can easily disappear in LP and fog. APP got rid of the massive gradients and LP quite well I think.

Object ID M92 (NGC6341)
Details Size 14′, Mag. 6.3
Hercules
Telescope 250mm f4.8 Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX -15C
Exposure(s) 10x180s ea RGB 1×1
darks, flats, bias
Capture APT
Processing APP, Photoshop
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IC410 Tadpoles in Hydrogen Alpha

5 December 2019|Nebula, News, NGC Winter|

The two tadpoles are about 10 light years long and places of star formation.

Object ID IC410 Tadpoles
Details Size 50’x50′, Mag. 7.5
Auriga
Telescope 250mm f4.8 Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX -15C
Exposure(s) 10x300s Ha 2×2
darks, flats, bias
Capture APT
Processing APP, Photoshop
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Fish head nebula (IC1795)

5 December 2019|Nebula, News, NGC Autumn|

This is a bit of a weird looking one! Stars to the left aren’t good shapes – probably combination of optical alignment, focus and collimation. Stars are over-processed too – should have been so much better.

Object ID IC1695 Fish head nebula (part of the Heart nebula)
Details Size 12’x12′
Cassiopeia
Telescope 250mm f4.8 Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX -15C
Exposure(s) 20x300s ea Ha, OIII 2×2
darks, flats, bias
Capture APT
Processing APP, Photoshop
Processed SHO with synthetic SII
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NGC 6992/6995 Eastern Veil (C33)

1 October 2019|Caldwell, Nebula, News, NGC Summer|

Could only fit part in the FOV

Object ID NGC 6992/6995 Eastern Veil, Caldwell 33
Details Size 60’ x 8′
Telescope 250mm f4.8 Newtonian
Camera Atik 460EX -16C
Exposure(s) 10x180s ea RGB 1×1
Capture APT
Processing APP, Photoshop
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