Sunday, January 24, 2010

M31 - Ultra high resolution

Copyright (c) 2009-2010 by Holger Weber
Strong modified GSO carbon newton 200mm f/5 w. Starlight-FeatherTouch
CCD camera: AllCCD9Pro color
Mount: Losmandy G11 w. Gemini GOTO
Description: This mosaic consists of 4 segments
Guiding: Watec CCD on SkyWatcher Maksutov
Copyright by Holger Weber, Germany
Co-Author of
Software: Deep-Sky-Stacker (DRIZZLE stacking method)

Processing Mars OSC photos in RRGB...

Tonight, I would like to show you how I processed my recent Mars photos. The RRGB (Red-Red-Green-Blue) technique is applied. All photos are made with a user friendly One-Shot-Color WebCam (model: TIS DBK12 USB)!

YES! You can increase the resolution of your Mars photos using this planet processing technique. Here is a screenshot of my computer desktop during practicing it. This technique is an idea I have had a couple of hours ago. It seems to work!

  • Capture your planet as a video stream (avi file) in the allowed time window according to the resolution of your telescope+webcam combination, the planet (i.e. Mars) and its apparent size in the firmament. If you want to find out how long you can record the planet in a single avi file without to have a smearing effect caused by the planet rotation then run my free software "AstroDigital.Net". It computes it!
  • Stack your avi file by using the GIOTTO software. The result is the automatically generated .FITS color file "resultcopy" in the same directory as your avi file.
  • Sharp your resultcopy file by using the GIOTTO software. Save the result in a .FITS color file called "resultcopy_sharp_390.fits":

  • Load the color file resultcopy_sharp_390.fits in MaximDL. Make a TriColor split to separate the three sharped channels R,G,B. Save them in your harddisk as:
  1. resultcopy_sharp_390-R.fits
  2. resultcopy_sharp_390-G.fits
  3. resultcopy_sharp_390-B.fits
  • Duplicate the resultcopy_sharp_390-R.fits file as resultcopy_sharp_390-L.fits (L means Luminance, i.e. we will use the red channel as luminance) in the Windows Explorer window.
  • Load the resultcopy.fits in MaximDL. Make a TriColor split to separate the three channels R,G,B. Save them in your harddisk as:
    1. resultcopy_390-R.fits
    2. resultcopy_390-G.fits
    3. resultcopy_390-B.fits
  • Load the files resultcopy_sharp_390-L.fits , resultcopy_sharp_390-R.fits, resultcopy_sharp_390-G.fits, resultcopy_390-B.fits in CCDSoft.
  • Adjust their histograms.
  • Invoke "Color Combine" window.
Congratulations! Your RRGB Mars image is ready! Note the difference in resolution between the original RGB image from your OSC Webcam and your RRGB composite. It's a huge step up, isn't it?

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Observing the Sun through the kitchen window

The Sun with spots as observed on Sat, 16th Jan. 2010 at 265mm focal length:
Digital zoomed (at effectively 530mm focal length):
The photo above has been shot through the closed kitchen window (!) with a tiny Tak FS-60C (@ f/30) telescope and a special Baader Astrosolar filter. The sky was partially cloudy preventing to reach the maximum resolution of my telescope. Even so some sunspots are clearly visible. Sunspots are "cold" areas with strong magnetism on the Sun surface. Caution: Do not attempt to observe the Sun without using special solar filters. For further information, please contact your telescope dealer.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Star fields near NGC6210 in Hercules

Integration time in the luminance channel: 180+420 seconds
Camera: ST-7XME, Telescope FS-102 (f/5.6), Focal length 560mm.

Sunday, January 03, 2010