The dark nebula “Barnard 142” in Aquila

Under a dark sky it’s great to see the shooting stars, the Milky Way, to enjoy the sound of the night crickets and other wildlife. And to shoot some pictures of the stars! Our family holiday in Castellet-en-Luberon allowed me to do all of that. This picture is a relative wide field taken with a Nikon 180mm F4 and FF camera Nikon D750. You can find Altair as the brightest star (Aquila constellation), and the familiar stars above and beneath Altair (in this picture right and left). In the middle of the picture a dark spot can be found, a dark cloud of dust and gas obscuring the starfields of our Milky Way that lie in the distant background. It’s called Barnard 142 after the catalogue of the US astronomer Edward Barnard (1857-1923). He also discovered the fastest moving (apparently) star in our skies (in Ophiuchus) which was called Barnard’s star.

40×30″ at ISO400

No guiding, darks or flats were used for this image. A full-size version can be found on my Astrobin site.

M109: an image, despite all issues

An image of the surprisingly nice galaxy M109, located near Phecda, one of the bright stars of the Ursa Major’s bowl. Imaging was done with the C11, using the Starizona F 7.2 reducer, and the Nikon D750. Unfortunately, the image format setting in SGP was set to “FITS”. That resulted in strange, Black/White images with lots of problems! I could salvage the 27×300″ images a bit but the end result is a bit disappointing, it’s not a color version to start with. ..

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