Sunday, March 21, 2010

Sunspotter becomes Moon Spotter and SLR Imaging on a Sunday Evening

News: Annie M. had a group of people over to her house last night in celebration of the Moon's Occultation of the Pleiades. She was able to take some images and stack them using HDR processing and they were published on Congrats to my fellow amateur astronomer and friend for getting published... and it was exciting being there as she was taking those images!

Ok... so Annie inspired me to try some imaging...
I spent the last few hours of my spring break enjoying the night sky. I decided to try my newly purchased Sunspotter Solar Telescope on the moon... and what do you know it works! Now I need to modify it to hold a Regal Finder... and I'll be able to trace the moon. The only issue is that the image isn't bright enough... I need to find me a nice 4" or 6" objective and make a folded projected refractor for lunar observations. (More on that later!)

Image of Sunspotter not being used correctly:

I decided to take some images of the Sunspotter with my D-SLR camera and then I decided to try my hand at some astrophotography. I've been toying around with the idea of getting a Astrotracker for my DLSR but haven't been able to justify to $600 cost. Here I was trying my best to image without a tracking mount. The following images were taken with my Canon 50D, and a 400mm f/4 L lens and 1.5x teleconverter. I used mirror lock up and a Velbon Carbon Fiber tripod. I triggered the camera using a remote shutter cord.




Cassiopeia and "E.T."

ISS PASS... some tripod movement... in this one



Risk said...

Very Cool Matt! Have you figured out how to take several images and stack them? I tried last summer and failed.