Sunday, June 18, 2017

Impromptu Telescope Mount

LOL!  You gotta do wut you gotta do...  While trying to get over the apex of the house I needed to elevate the Dobsonian Mount of my Telescope.  I've got lots of large trees, and it is not an option to just got further out into the yard.  I needed to go up, and that was the only option.  So I used a food service table that I had made from scrap fence material, and then put a big, thick butcher block on top of it.  Then put the Dobsonian mount on top of that, and finally the Telescope.  Got me some elevation...

Computer Assisted Stargazing

Here is a shot of my setup on Saturday night.  I needed a computer to run the software for the Astrophotography Camera.  The Labtop computer I have is old, and didn't support the software for the camera.  So, I had to bring my main computer out on to the patio.  It's kinda risky to put WOPR out on the patio, in the elements.  But I did get some good shots of Jupiter, and Saturn.  It has me wanting to make a skyward portico on my roof, and automate the motion of the telescope so that I can do all the adjustments remotely, and record images in the study.  Sort of like what I did with the original Astronomical Video Camera...
My setup evolved drastically during my Starshoot session on Saturday Night.  Originally I planned on shooting from the front of the house.  But it was partly cloudy, and I didn't want to make the effort to setup in front if only to get clouded out.  So, I decided to setup in back to see if I could see Jupiter.  That worked, and I was already setup in back.  To see Saturn I needed to elevate the telescope to get over the apex of the roof.  So, I wound up rearranging the patio, moving a bunch of lumber, firewood, and furniture to get the right vantage point.  Now the telescope has a relatively good vantage point to see the southern sky, and all I have to do is move WOPR, my super computer, from the study to the patio.  LOL!  Hardly any effort at all...  Here is a shot of the first setup...

Saturn Shot with CMOS Sensor

I'm having a hard time capturing Saturn with its moons.  If I turn the exposure up I can see the moons, but when I see Saturn clearly the moons are under-exposed, and you can't see them.  Here is a shot where Saturn is fairly clear...

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Jupiter and Moons

Saturday Night, and I'm Stargazing again...  This time with enhanced technology.  I've hauled my computer, WOPR, out on to the patio, and I have it attached to the Telescope via a Celestron NexImage5 Astrophotography Camera.  I was eager to try this CMOS Image Sensor Technology with my new Reflector Telescope.  This time there are no lenses involved.  The Reflector Telescope has a Parabolic first surface mirror for the primary mirror, and then a 45 degree diagonal first surface mirror for the secondary mirror.  Then the light goes directly to a 5 Megapixel CMOS Image Sensor.  I'm going to try and catch Saturn next...

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Full Moon 2

Wow, Looka Dat!  Now Thatz wut Iz talkin' 'bout...

Full Moon

Well, not quite full, waning by a day.  This shot is a little overexposed, but its nice, and clear.  You can see the detail of the ridges, and craters.  You can see the profile around the periphery.  This shot is through the Two Inch Eyepiece.  Yeah, definitely need to get a Lunar Filter for these kind of shots.  When I use a higher magnification eyepiece I can zoom in the details, and view specific portions of the Lunar Surface.  The New Telescope is very exciting...

Saturn Shot

I've been trying to master my new camera mount on the Skyline Eight Inch Telescope.  Its exceedingly difficult to snap an image of a planet.  They are so small from our perspective, and I don't have Equatorial Motion, so I have to continuously move the Telescope to keep up with the motion of the sky.  I'm doing this while trying to align, and focus the camera.  It took like an hour to get this meager shot.  I am pleased, however, because this is the first time that I have been able to see Saturn, and its rings, and moons.  Awesome...