Lunar mosaic

Taken with the Maksutov 180mm F/15 & ASI174MM camera.

Click on the image for a larger view.

Cassini Vallis Alpes
Julius Cesar Agrippa Manilus
Ptolemaeus Parrot
Cassini ASI290MM @15FPS 3000FRAMES 40%stacked fullres
Cassini ASI174MM @80FPS 3000frames 40% stacked fullres

These two images of Cassini and Aristilus compare the ASI290MM and the ASI174MM on the same conditions, on the same telescope. The details seem to be really the same, allthough the image scale of the ASI290 is much more enlarged, it does not necessarily show more details. The Frame rate of the 174MM was a lot higher.

I guess the real test would be to do this exercise with a barlow in front of the ASI174MM. A éX barlow would enlarge the image scale, and at the same time the frame rate would still be 40FPS compared to 15fps for the ASI290MM.

Attempt to mosaic

After creating the Heart nebula in a mosaic a month ago, we had some semi-clear nights last week, in which I could try and stitch the Soul nebula to the Heart.

Unfortunbately these nights were also very foggy, sometimes fog banks floated over, with barely star visibility. The good news is that SGP (Sequence Generator Pro) kept up trying, despite star loss in PHD, to continue making lights. While sleeping. So that’s really wonderfull.

The end result, needless to say, did have that much gradient sin the final image that I do not consider it a result. It’s more an exercise. The final mosaic had 10.000×12.000 pixels and took 1,5 Gb TIFF or FITS size. Both AstroPixelProcessor and Photoshop had issues digesting this large file. In fact it’s so large that Astrobin or this website cannot upload it.

10% of a 11.000×12/000 pixel mosaic 6-panel.
A 2-panel (part of ) the Soul nebula. It’s clear by the halo’s around the brighter stars how foggy it exactly was.

This is a two-panel mosaic each panel of about 10 300-seconds 800ISO frames with the 120mm Esprit F5,5 and Nikon D750
. The remaining panels on the left of the “foetus” were fogged out.

Heart in the Sky

The Heart Nebula in Perseus is an interesting region of red hydrogen clouds mixed with dark nebulosity and bright star clusters. This was a test-run: first light with the Sequence generator Pro combined with the Nikon D750 (with autofocus by PegasusAstro, worked wonderfull). Second test (living dangerously!): first attempt to mosaic automatically with SGP.

The D750 would crash SGP when hitting the “link” button: as soon as I touched that button, SGP would collapse and simply vanish in thin air. Solution: install the 2013 C++ redistributables.

The Optolong Pro filter OR the reducer/flattener (or the combination) imho added a lot of vignetting and uneven illumination to the image, which I had a hard time eliminating. So next test would be with a regular Nikon T-ring. If that does not solve the issue then it must be the F5 reducer. I noticed earlier already that images at F7 with the Nikon were a lot cleaner.

IC1805 or the Heart Nebula in Perseus. Image dedicated to my mom who passed way in September age 79.