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Sunday, June 23, 2013

M 51 - Whirpool Galaxy in LRGB

















The Whirlpool Galaxy (also known as Messier 51a, M51a, or NGC 5194) is an interacting grand-design spiral galaxy in the constellation Canes Venatici. Recently it was estimated to be 23 ± 4 million light-years from the Milky Way Galaxy, but different methods yield distances between 15 and 35 million ly. Messier 51 is one of the best known galaxies in the sky. The galaxy and its companion (NGC 5195) are easily observed by amateur astronomers, and the two galaxies may even be seen with binoculars. The Whirlpool Galaxy is also a popular target for professional astronomers, who study it to further understand galaxy structure (particularly structure associated with the spiral arms) and galaxy interactions.

What was later known as the Whirlpool Galaxy was discovered on October 13, 1773 by Charles Messier, and is designated as M51. Its companion galaxy, NGC 5195, was discovered in 1781 by Pierre M├ęchain. It was however not until 1845 that the Whirlpool became the first to be recognized as a spiral. This was achieved by Lord Rosse employing a 72-inch (~1.83 m) reflecting telescopewhich he constructed at Birr Castle, Ireland. Sometimes M51 is used to refer to the pair of galaxies, in which case the individual galaxies may be referred to as M51A (NGC 5194) and M51B (NGC 5195).

In 2005 a supernova (SN 2005cs) was observed in the Whirlpool Galaxy, peaking at apparent magnitude 14.
On 31 May 2011 a magnitude 13.5 type II supernova (SN 2011dh) was detected also in M51.


Telescope: APM Astrograph 107, f/6.5 with Baader Steeltrack Focuser and 2.5'' TS FF
Mount: NEQ6 Pro with EQ Mod and XBOX Wireless Controller
Camera: ATIK 314L+
Image Scale: 1.91 arcsec/pixel
Filter: Baader L,R,G,B, IDAS LPS
Filter Wheel: Starlight Xpress Motor USB, 7x1.25''
Guide Camera: QHY5 with PHD Guiding and TS UV/IR Block
Guide Scope: Skywatcher Finderscope 8x50
Total Exp. Time: 224 min, Lum: 136 min(bin 1x1), R,G,B: 28,28,32 min(bin 1x1)
Temperature: Ambient (11-14C), CCD (-5C)
Capture: Nebulosity
Register, Stack: Maxim DL, CCD Stack
Processing: Photoshop CS5
Date: 9 June 2013
Location: Kithairon Mount, Attica, GR

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Timelapse - Greek Astrophotographers in the Field


Camera: Canon EOS 50D
Total Frames: 1200 Pictures
30 Frames per Second
Processing: Avid Studio
Date: February 2013
Place: Ag. Panteleiomon, Attica, GR

Sunday, October 28, 2012

IC 1871 Nebula in Ha


The Soul Nebula (Sharpless 2-199, LBN 667) is an emission nebula also in Cassiopeia. Several small open clusters are embedded in the nebula: CR 34, 632, and 634 (in the head) and IC1848 (in the body). The object is more commonly called by the cluster designation IC1848. Small emission nebula IC 1871 is present just left of the top of the head, and small emission nebulae 670 and 669 are just below the lower back area. This complex is the eastern neighbor of IC1805 (Heart Nebula) and the two are often mentioned together as the ''Heart and Soul''

Telescope: APM Astrograph 107, f/6.5 with Baader Steeltrack Focuser and 2.5'' TS FF
Mount: NEQ6 Pro with EQ Mod and XBOX Wireless Controller
Camera: ATIK 314L+
Image Scale: 1.91 arcsec/pixel
Filter: Baader Ha 7nm, IDAS LPS
Filter Wheel: Starlight Xpress Motor USB, 7x1.25''
Guide Camera: QHY5 with PHD Guiding and TS UV/IR Block
Guide Scope: Skywatcher Finderscope 8x50
Total Exp. Time: 2 hours & 40 min in Ha, Bin 1x1
Temperature: Ambient (13-15C), CCD (0C)
Capture: Nebulosity 2
Register, Stack: Maxim DL, CCD Stack
Processing: Photoshop CS3
Date: 20 Sep 2012
Location: Ag. Panteleiomon, Attica, GR

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Sh2-132 Nebula in HST palette
















Sharpless 2-132 is a very faint emission type nebula on the Cepheus/Lacerta border. It lies at a degree southeast of Epsilon Cep, and has a size of about 40 arc minutes. The large but dim emission nebula Sh 2-132 in Cepheus lies 10,370 light-years away and spans another 272 light-years across.

The star at the center of the image below is the very luminous SAO 34301 (HD 211853, mag 8.99), perhaps more commonly known as WR 153, which along with another O-type star (mag 8.5) are primarily responsible for the excitation and ionization of the hydrogen gas in the area and which represents a relatively rare example of a Wolf-Rayet nebula.

Telescope: APM Astrograph 107, f/6.5 with Baader Steeltrack Focuser and 2.5'' TS FF
Mount: NEQ6 Pro with EQ Mod and XBOX Wireless Controller
Camera: ATIK 314L+
Image Scale: 1.91 arcsec/pixel
Filter: Baader Ha 7nm, OIII 8.5nm, SII 8nm, IDAS LPS
Filter Wheel: Starlight Xpress Motor USB, 7x1.25''
Guide Camera: QHY5 with PHD Guiding and TS UV/IR Block
Guide Scope: Skywatcher Finderscope 8x50
Total Exp. Time: 3 hours & 52 min (Ha: 120 mins Bin 1x1, O3, S2: 56, 56 min Bin 2x2)
Temperature: Ambient (25C), CCD (-5C)
Capture: Nebulosity 2
Register, Stack: Maxim DL, CCD Stack
Processing: Photoshop CS3
Date: 27 Aug 2011
Location: Tyros, Arcadia, GR

Monday, July 30, 2012

IC 5067 - Pelican Nebula in (L+Ha)RGB
















The Pelican Nebula (also known as IC5070 and IC5067[1]) is an H II region associated with the North America Nebula in the constellation Cygnus. The gaseous contortions of this emission nebula bear a resemblance to a pelican, giving rise to its name[1]. The Pelican Nebula is located nearby first magnitude star Deneb, and is divided from its more prominent neighbour, the North America Nebula, by a molecular cloud filled with dark dust.

The Pelican is much studied because it has a particularly active mix of star formation and evolving gas clouds. The light from young energetic stars is slowly transforming cold gas to hot and causing an ionization front gradually to advance outward. Particularly dense filaments of cold gas are seen to still remain, and among these are found two jets emitted from the Herbig–Haro object 555.[1] Millions of years from now this nebula might no longer be known as the Pelican, as the balance and placement of stars and gas will leave something that appears completely different.

Telescope: APM Astrograph 107, f/6.5 with Baader Steeltrack Focuser and 2.5'' TS FF
Mount: NEQ6 Pro with EQ Mod and XBOX Wireless Controller
Camera: ATIK 314L+
Image Scale: 1.91 arcsec/pixel
Filter: Baader Ha 7nm, L, RGB, IDAS LPS
Filter Wheel: Starlight Xpress Motor USB, 7x1.25''
Guide Camera: QHY5 with PHD Guiding and TS UV/IR Block
Guide Scope: Skywatcher Finderscope 8x50
Total Exp. Time: 5 hours & 13 min (Ha: 160 mins, L: 57 min, RGB: 32:32:32 min) Bin 1x1
Temperature: Ambient (23 - 27C), CCD (0C)
Capture: Nebulosity 2
Register, Stack: Maxim DL, CCD Stack
Processing: Photoshop CS3
Date: 20 & 21 July 2012
Location: Salamina, GR

Friday, July 27, 2012

M 27 - Dumbbell Nebula in HaO3RGB

















The Dumbbell Nebula Messier 27 (M27, NGC 6853) is perhaps the finest planetary nebula in the sky, and was the first planetary nebula ever discovered.

This planetary nebula is certainly the most impressive object of its kind in the sky, as the angular diameter of the luminous body is nearly 6 arc minutes, with a faint halo extensing out to over 15', half the apparent diameter of the Moon (Millikan 1974). 

It is also among the brightest, being at most little less luminous with its estimated apparent visual magnitude 7.4 than the brightest, the Helix Nebula NGC 7293 in Aquarius, with 7.3, which however has a much lower surface brightness because of its larger extension (estimates from Stephen Hynes); it is a bit unusual that this planetary is only little fainter photographically (mag 7.6). The present author (hf) was surprized how fine this object was seen in his 10x50 binoculars under moderately good conditions!

Telescope: APM Astrograph 107, f/6.5 with Baader Steeltrack Focuser and 2.5'' TS FF
Mount: NEQ6 Pro with EQ Mod and XBOX Wireless Controller
Camera: ATIK 314L+
Image Scale: 1.91 arcsec/pixel
Filter: Baader Ha 7nm, OIII 8.5nm, RGB, IDAS LPS
Filter Wheel: Starlight Xpress Motor USB, 7x1.25''
Guide Camera: QHY5 with PHD Guiding and TS UV/IR Block
Guide Scope: Skywatcher Finderscope 8x50
Total Exp. Time: 6 hours (Ha: 160 mins, O3: 116 min, RGB: 28:28:28 min) Bin 1x1
Temperature: Ambient (23 - 27C), CCD (0C)
Capture: Nebulosity 2
Register, Stack: Maxim DL, CCD Stack 
Processing: Photoshop CS3
Date: 13 & 20 July 2012
Location: Salamina, GR

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Ngc 7331 Group of Galaxies in LRGB



NGC 7331 (also known as Caldwell 30) is a spiral galaxy about 40 megalight-years (12 Mpc) away in the constellation Pegasus. It was discovered by William Herschel in 1784. NGC 7331 is the brightest member of the NGC 7331 Group of galaxies.
The galaxy is similar in size and structure to the galaxy we inhabit, and is often referred to as "the Milky Way's twin", although recent discoveries regarding the structure of the Milky Way may call this similarity into doubt.

Telescope: APM Astrograph 107, f/6.5 with Baader Steeltrack Focuser and 2.5'' TS FF
Mount: NEQ6 Pro with EQ Mod and XBOX Wireless Controller
Camera: ATIK 314L+
Image Scale: 1.91 arcsec/pixel
Filter: Baader L,R,G,B, IDAS LPS
Filter Wheel: Starlight Xpress Motor USB, 7x1.25''
Guide Camera: QHY5 with PHD Guiding and TS UV/IR Block
Guide Scope: Skywatcher Finderscope 8x50
Total Exp. Time: 2 hours & 48 min, Lum: 96 min(bin 1x1),R,G,B: 24,24,24 min(bin 2x2)
Temperature: Ambient (25C), CCD (-5C)
Capture: Nebulosity 2.3.0
Register, Stack: Maxim DL, CCD Stack
Processing: Photoshop CS3
Date: 26 August 2011
Location: Tyros, Arcadia, GR