Saturday, January 20th, 2018

The pinwheel galaxy, whose proper designation is Messier 101, is not an easy object to photograph. It has little color, and efforts to boost the color that it does have usually ends up ugly. This time around I photographed it remotely using a 20-inch telescope at Mayhill, New Mexico, at 7,300 feet. Total exposure for […]

Way up there in the eastern sky somewhere is a star named Sadr. I can barely make it out through all the light pollution, but I know it’s there, because my trusty telescope Stella dutifully bores a hole for me through the polluted atmosphere so I can peer into outer space. Even better, if I […]

The Pinwheel Galaxy is a popular target for amateur astrophotographers, and I am as about amateur as they get. For this shot I hired a telescope owned by, located at Mayhill, New Mexico. Over three nights I collected several hours of red, green, and blue data. These were fed into the PixInsight processing program […]

This image was taken from Maui, Hawaii, by Dori Thorngren, my sister-in-law. She says, “Aloha! I used a Canon Rebel with a 75-300 zoom on a tripod. I took it at f/5.6, 1/3 second, ISO 1600, from our front door entrance. We started our viewing by watching the moon rise through clouds from an oceanfront […]

Why do I do these things? I’m beginning yet another major project, one that calls into question my good judgment (which may be true of many of my projects). Several of my online correspondents have convinced me that my telescope mount will work better if I send it off to be “hypertuned.” This involves completely […]

More data acquired by Adam Block and processed by myself, this time of the Butterfly Nebula, also called the Bug Nebula, or more officially NGC 6302. It is a bipolar planetary nebula in the constellation Scorpius. According to Wikipedia, The structure in the nebula is among the most complex ever observed in planetary nebulae. The […]

I spruced up Mr. Crab with a little color from the same borrowed data acquired by Adam Block (see The Crab Nebula) I’ve probably mentioned this before, but there really is no “correct” color rendition of deep sky objects. If I were to look through the telescope eyepiece at Mr. Crab, I would probably be […]

Image data credit: Adam Block, Mt. Lemmon SkyCenter – University of Arizona No, Stella did not take this one. I received some data for an image of The Crab with a processing tutorial I purchased. I created the image above using part of that data, and posted it on our church website as an example […]

For visual appeal, star clusters are not at the top of my favorites list, but when you find a pair of them close together, it’s always worth a look. This pair goes by the catalog names of NGC 884 and NGC 896, left and right, respectively. They were snapped by Stella (with a lttle help […]

My pet telescope and midnight companion Stella has been getting the shivers lately as the season progresses. Her warm weather coat of a charcoal grill cover doesn’t quite answer. The solution is a weatherproof scooter cover tucked in around her tripod legs. Today is turning out to be a beautiful Veteran’s Day precursor, a true […]