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Astrophotography / Re: Comet C/2020 F3 (NEOWISE) 7-Jul-2020
« Last post by Rick on Yesterday at 22:40:34 »
Looking very pretty in the photos. Just hope there's a break in the weather. It's been solid cloud here for the last couple of days. Some of the time we've been in the cloud rather than under it...
That has a makings of a very good image Duncan, The filters have worked well. 

I do find the colours a bit overcooked (yes I know I am a fine one to talk), it looks worse when you zoom in.  But otherwise excellent. 

I'd love to do M8, but I have missed it for another year as I have no low southern horizon from home and doubt we will get to Cairds next week as the forecast is not good.  I got M20 a few years ago from Cairds so I know it's possible. 

My first image with an Optolong L-enhance dual band filter. I'm really pleased with the result. 135x60s subs on an unguided StarAdventurer mount. Gain 120, Offset 4, Temp -5c. Very accurately polar aligned with Sharpcap using a guidecam with 22mm lens. Homebrew electronic focuser. I might be 9 degrees south of you lot but it's still a low target and there is fierce light pollution to the south along the motorway  and coast so this filter got a workout. And the Moon was rising all the while. I had cooling on, the ambient was about 25c.

Telescope aperture and focal ratio:   Sharpstar 61EDPH with flattener fl275mm f4.5 on StarAdventurer
Camera and filters used:   ZWO ASI294MC Pro, Optolong L-Enhance dual band filter
Processing applied:   ASTAP, PixInsight, Irfanvie

Click for picture, I can't get to the small pic img url on my phone browser, I'll add it later. It's cropped 100pixels.

image is here on gallery
Greetings all,

Here is the link to this year's Royal Society summer science exhibition which is free to access and if you cannot watch live is going to be put on YouTube so you can find it there after the event. Friday 17th looks like the main astro/space themed day but allsorts of interesting stuff new and historical all week.

Enjoy. Clear skies. Sue.

Astrophotography / Re: IC405 aka 'The Flaming Star Nebula'
« Last post by NoelC on Jul 08, 2020, 21:48:24 »
It's an amazing piece of work Robert
Unguided for 600S at f7! - just out of my league.
For that narrow a field it has a huge amount of detail.

Astrophotography / Re: M101
« Last post by NoelC on Jul 08, 2020, 21:38:47 »
I have CS2.  I bought CS3 second hand (CD, box and manual £30 - if anyone's interested) but the software wouldn't fire up (complained it needed updating) after many hours of hunting on Adobe archive websites it sent me to the old CS2 version.  I also have PSE5 (circa 2005) which is more use than CS2 - but doesn't support curves.  I think I'm a GIMP convert now.  It opens a lot more raw files, although when opening 32 bit FITS files it imported them as greyscale.
Just remember the Levels and curves are under the 'Color' menu.
GIMP tip of the day: to Deselect CTRL+SHIFT+A.
The History pane is in the multi-use pane on the left (Device Status/History/Images pane), but you can step back with CTRL+Z forever.
Astrophotography / Re: Comet C/2020 F3 (NEOWISE) 7-Jul-2020
« Last post by Carole on Jul 08, 2020, 21:26:06 »
I thought I could detect the trace of a 2nd tail yesterday looking at all the images.

No chance of seeing it yet, forecast is for cloud.  Maybe Friday night (Saturday morning).

Astrophotography / Re: Comet C/2020 F3 (NEOWISE) 7-Jul-2020
« Last post by MarkS on Jul 08, 2020, 21:19:03 »
Two tails! It's now developing an ion tail. 

Here's a recent picture from France:

Hopefully Saturday morning will be clear.

Astrophotography / Re: M101
« Last post by Carole on Jul 08, 2020, 12:54:12 »
That looks a good tutorial on Gimp, I only tried to use it one when I was in Spain and hadn't put Photoshop on my mini laptop.  Couldn't get much sense out of it at the time but this tutorial is good.

What version of Photoshop do you have Noel, I am using CS3 and there is only one thing I have found on a new tutorial that I can't do with it.  I bought mine years ago on Ebay as used old version. 

Astrophotography / Re: M101
« Last post by NoelC on Jul 08, 2020, 11:42:30 »
Thanks Duncan, Mark & Carole.
All we need now is a break in the clouds!

Carole; the data was very low down; I think all my subs have very low signal. By the time I had stretched it the outer arms were within 3 adu of the background and un-stretched the sub was completely black.  Is it to do with the way I stack it?  I just put it on sigma clip/ star align and let it do it's thing.  Can extend the exposure time, but the stats say S/N won't improve and frame mortality due to tracking, seeing and satallites(!) increases, so am inclined to stay short.

Struggling a bit with my clapped out old version of Photoshop (and I refuse to pay £20/month or whatever the current version costs), did a youtube tutorial on using GIMP which was very useful:-
27 mins, good intro to the package and use of levels, curves, layers, star masks and selective contrast.

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