New hobby keeping me busy during COVID

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audioengr

New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« on: 7 Mar 2021, 06:27 pm »
My new hobby has me out at night whenever possible, and no, it's not night-clubing, it's Astrophotography.  It turns-out that many had the same idea, so it can be difficult to get a telescope now, with many months lead-time.

I built a star-deck on my house in 2003, but have never seriously used it for astronomy until now.  The last comet Neowise got me re-interested, so I finally got a good telescope.  Thought I would tinker with photos, but discovered that is how you start to really see the universe, so that's all I do now.  Put the eyepieces away.

Here are a couple of my photos:

Andromeda Galaxy


Orion Nebula


If anyone is interested, I can give you info on how to get started in this hobby and how to do this quality of photo.  It takes an investment of at least $5K, but better with more like $7-10K.

timind

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #1 on: 7 Mar 2021, 06:38 pm »
Let me say those are freakin awesome. I'm gonna live this hobby vicariously through you. More pics please.

Phil A

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #2 on: 7 Mar 2021, 06:39 pm »
Great photos.  I bought a telescope (along with a camera mount) well over a year ago but still haven't gotten around to do much with it.

charmerci

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #3 on: 7 Mar 2021, 06:41 pm »
So cool!

audioengr

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #4 on: 7 Mar 2021, 06:47 pm »
Let me say those are freakin awesome. I'm gonna live this hobby vicariously through you. More pics please.

Okay.  Here are the Horsehead and Flame Nebulas:




Ern Dog

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #5 on: 7 Mar 2021, 07:28 pm »
Holy Shite!  That Horsehead looks Amazing Steve!  Fabulous photos!

Chris Adams

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #6 on: 7 Mar 2021, 07:53 pm »
Steve, those photos are incredible! They look like professional quality to me. :thumb:

audioengr

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #7 on: 7 Mar 2021, 07:55 pm »
Holy Shite!  That Horsehead looks Amazing Steve!  Fabulous photos!

Here's Elephant Trunk Nebula:




mresseguie

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Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #8 on: 7 Mar 2021, 11:44 pm »
 :o Wow! :thumb: Awesome photos!!  :popcorn: Watching for more!!!

Steve,

These are amazing. I want to hop in a trans-stellar vessel and slide into every galaxy and solar system to see what adventures unfold. Your location is a huge aid to sky watching.

Thank you for showing the wonders of our night sky.

Michael

Tomy2Tone

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #9 on: 7 Mar 2021, 11:55 pm »
Incredible phots!

What’s the investment ratio between telescope and camera? I’m assuming more for the telescope but what quality camera? Forgive my ignorance, or is there a telescope that also takes photos?

Saturn94

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Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #10 on: 8 Mar 2021, 12:01 am »
Awesome pics!  :thumb:


audioengr

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #11 on: 8 Mar 2021, 01:23 am »
Incredible phots!

What’s the investment ratio between telescope and camera? I’m assuming more for the telescope but what quality camera? Forgive my ignorance, or is there a telescope that also takes photos?

Telescope is a 60th Anniversary 8" Celestron EdgeHD with Evolution mount, HD tripod and HD wedge.  This was $4-5K  Telescope does not take photos.

Cameras are:

ZWO ASI294MC-Pro - $1K - Capture camera
ZWO ASI120MM - $275 - Guide camera

Many accessories, including the Hyperstar ($1K) lens group for wide angle shots like the Orion Nebula

I have about $2K in eyepieces also, but don't use them except for when I have visitors.

Steve N.



audioengr

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #12 on: 8 Mar 2021, 01:26 am »
:o Wow! :thumb: Awesome photos!!  :popcorn: Watching for more!!!

Steve,

These are amazing. I want to hop in a trans-stellar vessel and slide into every galaxy and solar system to see what adventures unfold. Your location is a huge aid to sky watching.

Thank you for showing the wonders of our night sky.

Michael

Here's another, both of the Veil Nebulas:




audioengr

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #13 on: 8 Mar 2021, 01:42 am »
Here is a smaller object that requires a lot of magnification, so it is shot from the rear, the Crab Nebula:




6523 light years from earth. Pretty close. The Milky Way is about 100K light years across, so it is probably inside.  The closest galaxy, Andromeda is 2.5 million light years away.  It is crazy to think that that the photons from that first photo are 2.5 million years old.  Andromeda may not look anything like this today, 2.5 million years later.

Some of these Nebula look like smoke, although they are many light years across.  Even if the dust and gasses are moving at thousands of miles per hour, we will not see much change in a thousand years.

Most people believe that with a powerful enough telescope in space, we could see every star and galaxy in the universe.  We can't because the universe is expanding and accelerating so fast that the outer things are moving faster than the speed of light, so photons from those things will never reach us, ever.  In fact some of the things that we can see today will not be there in a thousand years.  This is why we have a night sky and all of the stars in the universe do not illuminate the earth all night long.  As time goes on, our night will be a bit darker, with fewer stars.  Most of them are in our own Milky Way galaxy though, so most will still be visible.  The limited sphere of things we can see is called "the observable universe".
« Last Edit: 8 Mar 2021, 04:20 am by audioengr »

Digi-G

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #14 on: 8 Mar 2021, 09:35 pm »
Fascinating! 

Did you color the photos?  I thought I had read that all photos like these are manually colored.  I don't know if that's true or not.

What makes that last picture "from the rear"?  Isn't this the only view we have of it?

audioengr

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #15 on: 8 Mar 2021, 10:41 pm »
Fascinating! 

Did you color the photos?  I thought I had read that all photos like these are manually colored.  I don't know if that's true or not.

What makes that last picture "from the rear"?  Isn't this the only view we have of it?

I don't add any color.  This is all natural.  I try to get the most accurate colors by doing Photometric Color Calibration.  This uses an international space database from orbiting satellites that contains the brightness and color of every star in the Milky Way.  I get it pretty close and then the software automatically adjusts the color a little to match that database.

I can take photos from the rear of the scope at F/10 or from the front at F/1.9 with the same camera.  Smaller objects from the rear and larger from the front.  The cables have to be routed across the front, but they are curved to minimize diffraction.  There are three mirrors involved in the rear images and only one for the front images.

audioengr

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #16 on: 9 Mar 2021, 01:52 am »
Another photo for your enjoyment, the Flaming Star Nebula:




RolandButcher

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Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #17 on: 9 Mar 2021, 02:52 am »
Amazing work - thanks for sharing this with us.  This one and the Horsehead + Flame Nebulas are my favorite.

audioengr

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #18 on: 9 Mar 2021, 05:03 am »
Amazing work - thanks for sharing this with us.  This one and the Horsehead + Flame Nebulas are my favorite.

That's good to know.  I need to pair down to 8-10 for an exhibit.
« Last Edit: 9 Mar 2021, 07:26 pm by audioengr »

Marbles

Re: New hobby keeping me busy during COVID
« Reply #19 on: 27 Mar 2021, 03:10 pm »
These photo's are crazy good, please keep posting.

How are you dealing with light pollution?