Well, we finally got some decent weather last week (not raining, but not so hot and humid that I could not really see much), so I had a shot at some astrophotography. My equipment is:
- Celestron CPC 1100 Telescope
- Alt-az mount
- Canon XSi DSLR camera
Since I do not (yet) have an equatorial wedge for my telescope, I am limited in the exposure lengths I can use to about 10-30 seconds before field rotation ruins the image.
My first attempt was a simple star picture – Albireo – which is a pretty double star in the constellation Cygnus. This is a stack of 10, 15 second exposures:
My second attempt was of M13, a globular cluster in the constellation Hercules. This is a stack or 15, 15 second exposures:
Finally, I decided to try M57, the Ring Nebula, in the constellation Lyra. This is a stack of 20, 15 second exposures:
As I say, these are my first attempts at non-lunar, non-planetary images. I wanted to quickly work with a low number of images to stack initially, to see if I could get reasonable results. Next chance I get, I will focus more on one object, and go for a larger number of images to try to get more detail, better noise, etc. I am also just learning to use the image processing software, which is a major effort in and of itself.
(someday I will get a wedge, and be able to try longer individual exposures).