Tag Archives: canon

Autoguiding – First Light on Messier 82!

So, I’ve been putting off autoguiding for a long time now, after a lot of research, reading and asking a bunch of noob questions I decided to dive into autoguiding this week. I recently purchased a ZWO ASI290MC camera for planetary and moon photography and decided it would make an awesome guide camera when not in use. At the time of purchase, I also grabbed the Canon EOS adapter, why not. The next step was deciding to either go with an off axis guider (OAG) or a separate guide scope. I almost purchased a Celestron OAG and at the last minute decided to try out my Canon 400mm f/5.6 lens as a guide scope.

I had a piggy-back camera attachment for my Meade 12” LX90 and used that to mount the ASI camera and Canon lens to the Meade telescope. I installed PHD Guiding v1.14.2 by Stark Labs (www.stark-labs.com) for the first trial run. I kept all the default setting and was thrilled with the initial results!

Canon 400mm lens piggyback mounted on my Meade 12″ LX90.

I’ve never been able to take longer than 15-second exposures unguided. During this initial run with default settings, I was taking 60-second exposures at ISO 3200 using my Canon 6D DSLR, below is the first light image of the galaxy M82 (28-minutes total exposure taken on February 20, 2017) in the constellation Ursa Major, also known as the cigar galaxy.

Needless to say I can’t wait to image again.

The second run will be using PHD2 Guiding 2.6.3 and possibly using a Canon 100mm f/2.8 lens for guiding. My thoughts are the f/2.8 lens may bring in additional guide stars and also take a little weight off the mount (that I can use for other attachments, lol).

…Tom

Deepsky Imaging Setup

Here are the details on my current deepsky imaging setup that I will refer to in future image references. The system includes:

  • Meade 12″ LX90 Telescope.
  • Celestron CGEM DX Mount.
  • Antares f/6.3 Focal Reducer.
  • Canon 6D DSLR Camera.

Ethernet cable allow me to run the system from inside my home (useful for winter sessions and summer sessions).

Due to the weight of this setup, I’m limited to imaging sessions from my driveway. The system is on a JMI Wheeley Bar to move it in/out of the garage. Paint marks on the driveway help my quickly setup and align the system.

Deepsky Imaging Setup

Deepsky Imaging Setup

Issues:

  1. The Celestron mount should have come with a polar alignment scope, I paid an extra $39.00 to have one ordered. While you can get it close by looking through the “peep hole”, I think the scope will help.
  2. Still having some focus issues with the LX90. I use a Bahtinov mask to achieve focus, but imaging smaller stars always seem to be slightly out of focus.

I’ll keep this up-to-date as things change/or are added.

…Tom

Messier 52 Open Cluster in Cassiopeia

Messier 52 (M52, NGC 7654) is an open star cluster found in the constellation Cassiopeia. Distances to this open cluster vary from 3,000 to 7,000 light years.

My stacked image is composed of one hour and nineteen minutes of data collected in 60-second and 45-second shots taken over the last 12 months. The most recent data included images from October 2015. I used my wide-field setup including my trusty Canon 6D and Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L USM lens mounted on an iOptron ZEQ25 mount. Images were taken at f/5.6 and ISO 3200.

To the upper right of the open cluster, you can see the Bubble Nebula. Can you see the “bubble” inside the red nebula area? I’ll include more details on the Bubble Nebula in a future post as I’m trying to extract as much detail as possible from my image.

Messier 52 and the Bubble Nebula.

Messier 52 and the Bubble Nebula.

 

By IAU and Sky & Telescope magazine (Roger Sinnott & Rick Fienberg) [CC BY 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Right Ascension 23 : 24.2 (h:m)
Declination +61 : 35 (deg:m)
Distance 5.0 (kly)
Visual Brightness 7.3 (mag)
Apparent Dimension 13.0 (arc min)

Above data obtained from http://messier.seds.org/m/m052.html

Clear skies!

…Tom

The Moon – August 23, 2015

Last night’s moon, August 23, 2015 from Weatherly, Pennsylvania. Taken with a Canon 6D and Meade 12″ telescope.

PHASE: Waxing Gibbous, 8.5 days old.

Settings: ISO 200, 1/200 second, single exposure. Edited in Corel PaintShop Pro X5.

Waxing Gibbous Moon - August 23, 2015.

Waxing Gibbous Moon – August 23, 2015.

Clear skies!

…Tom

Perseid Meteor Shower Image #1

Perseid meteor from early this morning, August 12, 2015 in Weatherly, PA. Canon 6D and Samyang 14mm lens, 40 second exposure at ISO 3200, unguided.

Perseid Meteor

Perseid Meteor

More to come as I process images – did manage to get three in one exposure.

…Tom

%d bloggers like this: