Mars in the morning of September 6th

For the night of September 5th to 6th, predictions were not that good: clouds passing over, some jetstream that started increasing. I had the scope outside and collimated using the tri-Bahtinov on a star of the Pegasus square in the evening, it then cooled all night .

After a few hours of sleep, I woke up to see that Mars was high in the sky looking very bright & pretty next to the Moon. It was just freed up of a cloud band that barely cleared the beautiful duo.

When I started imaging, it was obvious that the seeing was fairly good. The larger albedo structures on the planet were steadily visible on the laptop screen.

The first series prooved to be the best. it was composed of

  • IR 120s @62FPS 7509 frames CM 207°
  • B 120s @22 FPS 2730 frames CM 207.1°
  • G 120s @40 FPS 4831 frames CM 206.6°
  • R 120s @76 FPS 9188 frames CM 206.1°

with a classic C11, a unbranded 2″ barlow, a Starlight XPRESS 1 1/4″ 7-position automated filter wheel with Baader filters, an Esatto 2″ focusser and the ASI290MM

Altitude 45°
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Testing the C11 without OAG

After cleaning & collimation, I tested the C11 with the Starizona F 7.2 reducer, the ASI183mm (way oversampled obviously), and guiding using a simple external 8×50 guider and the ASI290MC. Just as a test not bad. I’m not convinced the mirror shift did not have influence in this image. Focusing was a pain, needed to be done manually.

C11 Starizona F7.2 reducer flattener 8×50 guidescope, ASI183MM 46×120″ G111 Baader RGB

NGC3628 and it’s “tidal tail”

It very rarely happens that we ‘ve got 9 nights in a row (around new Moon!) here in Belgium. Next to the main setup I have put the little SharpStar to use to capture- every night 10-minute frames of this area. Even with the Optolong LPS the large field gave a clear gradiënt of light pollution.

Seeing the tail appear after 145 frames made me smile 🙂
So yes it’s possible to capture this feature in SQM 20 type skies, you only need a lot of patience I guess (or a faster scope).