MadMan's Astronomy and Astrophotography Pages - Photos of Weeks Past
Photos of Last Week - The Jellyfish Nebula - IC 443 - Narrow Band Imaging with the Takahashi FSQ-106 EDXiii
An experiment to fit my Canon EOS 24-105mm zoom onto either one or both of my SX cameras while also squeezing a filter in.  It has been challenging.  In this case, we have the results
of a 75 mm zoom at f4.0 of a large part of the molecular cloud in the constellation Orion.  It includes Barnard's Loop, the Orion Nebula and the Horsehead Nebula.  The image to the left
is a blend of TWO cameras with different size CCD's (RBG done in the SXVR-M25C and Ha done in the SXVR-H18).  The image to the right is just the image stack done with the it
manually in Photoshop to 'register' the two different size images with each other.  

Below these two images is a comparison of focal length and optical equipment quality.  It is a close-up of the Orion Nebula using just the H18 camera taking RGB and Ha images via
Alpha (Ha - 5 nm) filtration (6 x 20 minute subframes),  Sii filter (4x20m) and Oiii filter (4x20m).  Top right is the Hydrogen Alpha stack alone (2 hours).  To the bottom right is 1
hour of 4 minute RGB subframes mixed with the Ha as HaRed (50% lightening) + Green + Blue with the Ha then again added back as a luminance layer.  This is a more natural light

Imaging and processing:  Michael DeMita - December, 2011 - Suburban Atlanta, GA
Telescope:                 Takahashi FSQ 106-EDXiii with reducer at f3.6
Mount:                      Losmandy G-11
Camera:                     SXVR-H18 monochrome 8300 based CCD
Guiding:                    SX Lodestar in a 60 mm Vario finderscope on a Tangent Stronghold mount.  PHD software.
Capture:                    Nebulosity
Filters:                       Astrodon 5 nm and Tru-Balance LRGB
Processing:                Deep Sky Stacker and PS4
I would like to continue imaging and then process the image shown to the left of the Soul Nebula in the
Hubble Palette.  This is only 3 hours and 20 minutes on a great object done from a very light polluted
14 months and counting
since I bought my first
telescope and took my
first picture.....

January, 2012
Photos of The Week - Wide Field Hydrogen Alpha and RGB Imaging of Orion with Canon
EOS Lens, SXVR-H18 Mono CCD and SXVR-M25C OSC

Barnard's Loop, M42 and IC434 Region in Orion
Mars: Above is an image of Mars from 1/28/12.  Seeing
was not great here in Atlanta.  Celestron C11 Edge HD
scope with 2x Baader Barlow @ F20.  Capture with
FlyCapture 2.2 using a Flea3 Firewire 800 PGR camera
(ICX 618).  Astrodon LRGB filters.  Stack of the best
800 of 4000 frames.
Left:  By way of comparison, shown to the left a M42 close-up.  The
telescope used for this image was the Tak FSQ 106 reduced to f3.7.  
2 hours of RGB + 1.5 hours of Ha with the SXVR-H18 mono camera.

Below:  Just for fun, I took the zoomed image to the left and resized
image I took on the 11" SCT, into what I am calling a
Wide Field Mosaic
.  Cheesy but interesting - at least to me :).
Above: Mix of M25C camera for color and H18 camera for Ha Luminance.  
Re-sizing done manually so have to work on this image.  Barnard's Loop (left),
Horsehead (top - IC434) and Orion (Middle - M42) Nebulas.  3 h 55m.  Canon
EOS 24-105 zoom lens on both cameras at 75mm
Other work in process this month:
Slight star trails come from minute inaccuracies in polar alignment and are impossible to get out until I
use something like MaxPoint or do a PEC.  The reducer will speed the system up to F7 and still allow
for this level of magnification. The above two shots (M51 and the Orion Nebula Core) are almo entire
frames uncropped.  M51 is 7 hours and M42 was for 1.5 hours from the heavy LP Atlanta driveway.  
Would have been tolerable at faster speed and with some Ha added.  M25C camera, IDAS filter.
Above: This Hydrogen Alpha image was mixed with the RGB data
to produce the image to the left.  H18 camera
Barnard's Loop

The area imaged above contains
Barnard's Loop (catalogue designation
Sh 2-276).  The feature, seen to the left
of the two frames above, is an
emission nebula and is part of a
Molecular Cloud Complex
which also
contains the bright Horsehead and
Orion nebulae. The loop takes the form
of a large arc centred approximately on
the Orion Nebula. The stars within the
Orion Nebula are believed to be
responsible for ionizing the loop.

The loop extends over about 600
arcminutes as seen from Earth,
covering much of Orion. It is well seen
in long-exposure photographs,
although observers under very dark
naked eye.

SXVR-M25C plugged into a
Canon EOS 24-105mm