North America Nebula, 9-10 August 2008

These images are the first I’m really happy with. They’re the first I shot flat frames for and it makes all the difference.

This is NGC 7000, the North America Nebula, so called because it sort of resembles the continent. Cock your head to the left and you’ll start to see the resemblance--the dark “bay” in the upper-center-right is the Gulf of Mexico.

Shot 9-10 August 2008, ISO 800, Exp 9x5m, f/5.2, Canon EOS 5D & Televue NP127is, from Rock Springs Parking Lot, Mt. Tamalpais State Park.

Veil Nebula Redux, 10 August 2008

NGC 6960, the “Western Veil” portion of the nebula. Reshoot of last week’s image with a higher ISO. Even with only half the exposure time, the nebula is much brighter. I’m really getting the hang of this now.

Shot 10 August 2008, ISO 800, Exp 5x5m, f/5.2, Canon EOS 5D & Televue NP127is, from Rock Springs Parking Lot, Mt. Tamalpais State Park.

Moon, 9 August 2008

The moon again. I shot this one mainly to determine the infinite focus setting--the moon is just about the easiest object to focus on as you can readily see minor changes in detail at different settings. I also used it as my first experiment with flat field support frames.

Shot 9 August 2008, ISO 100, Exp 1/400s, f/5.2, Canon EOS 5D & Televue NP127is, from Rock Springs Parking Lot, Mt. Tamalpais State Park.

My Imaging Setup

Main Telescope:  Televue NP-127is, 127mm (5-inch), f/5.2 (660mm focal length) apochromatic refractor.

Guide Scope: William Optics, 80mm, achromatic refractor.

Mount: Takahashi EM-200 equatorial mount.

Camera: Canon EOS 5D, Hutech modified with Canon IR filter replaced with enhanced H-alpha filter.

Portion of the Veil Nebula

NGC 6960, the “Western Veil” portion of the nebula. It is very faint and looks like a horizontal wisp of cigarette smoke below the bright star in the center of frame.

Shot 3 August 2008, ISO 100, Exp 5x10m, f/5.2, Canon EOS 5D & Televue NP127is, from Rock Springs Parking Lot, Mt. Tamalpais State Park.

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