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Jupiter, Saturn tonight

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#1 butsam

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Posted 20 April 2013 - 11:21 PM

I got a pretty decent Jupiter tonight, considering the atmospheric conditions were pretty bad (and it is now 34 arcseconds across, too). Notice Ganymede in the upper left and Europa in the lower center. The black spot on the disc in the lower portion, I believe, is Europa's shadow on Jupiter. Note the Great Red Spot is also present.

I also got a very rushed Saturn...will post it in a reply.

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#2 butsam

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Posted 20 April 2013 - 11:22 PM

Also, can anyone else confirm the "Nearly-Great White Spot" near the Great Red Spot tonight?

#3 butsam

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Posted 20 April 2013 - 11:24 PM

Here's Saturn; I was *very* rushed in taking this. I had to crank up the integration time to 1/15 s since Saturn is dimmer than Jupiter, which didn't dawn on me to try until after most of my laptop battery was eaten up. I seriously finally acquired Saturn on the NexImage 5 with about 10 minutes of battery life left. So, I didn't take time to fine-tune the focus, and Saturn was still relatively low in the sky at this point (and as noted above, stars were twinkling like crazy tonight!). I am certain I can easily beat this shot, but here is my first (quite rushed) image of Saturn.

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#4 ben2112

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 12:47 AM

Hey Sam - I know the feeling.. I thought the car adapter was working but it's not. :( Luckily I had power outside for the blowdryer so I stole that and plugged in my laptop. I didn't do Jupiter but I was able to get some Saturn shots.. I am working on stacking them now. I tried playing around with the color balance but it did the whole frame and looked weird so I put it back to Auto.. I took some with the barlow.. It looked fuzzy while I was recording but we will see how it goes after post processing..

#5 ben2112

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 01:18 AM

Here is what I got for Saturn tonight. My barlow ones look really bad.. But this one turned out great.. Which really surprised me.. :shocked:

Just stacked and some tweaking of the wavelets.

Posted Image

#6 Tel

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 03:48 AM

Hi Ben,

Congratulations ! One of the best I've seen !

Lovely, fine detail in the belt structure and a very well defined Cassini division ! Great imaging ! :bow::bow:

Best regards,
Tel

#7 ben2112

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 05:36 AM

Thanks Tel. :) I wish the ones I did with a barlow would have came out that nice. Oh well, maybe next time.

#8 ben2112

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 05:52 AM

I think this is the best of my barlow images. Which to me isn't saying much.. :(

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#9 butsam

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 07:07 AM

I didn't have a chance to record any Barlow, as I just barely got the Saturn image that I had before my laptop died, but I am not surprised.

Your Saturn image is excellent! Well done! From the looks of it, you waited until closer to midnight, which also means less atmosphere to go through -- very good idea. :)

What integration time were you using for the image you posted? I finally realized I needed to increase integration time after 3 "failed" attempts to find Saturn at 1/30 s that I used for Jupiter. I suspect that since Saturn is about 10x less intense than Jupiter right now (about 2 numbers in magnitude), you are suffering from photon starvation even more when Barlowing, and need to up the integration time.

For the Saturn I got, I had integration at 1/15 s and gain cranked up nearly all the way...something like 50. I didn't have much time to mess with these settings, although next time I'll try tweaking more.

#10 ben2112

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 08:15 AM

Sam - My integration times were set on Auto. I should have did longer exposure time with using a barlow. Maybe I'll do that next time. The time was about 1am. I had let the scope cool down for about 2+ hours before I started taking images.

#11 hopskipson

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 09:01 AM

Nice image Ben nice banding and color!

Keep at it Sam, Jupiter is very hard target this time of year but it looks great.

#12 butsam

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 09:51 AM

Thanks :)

Next time, Saturn will be my main target. In fact, that was my initial plan last night...until I noticed GRS facing us *and* chance to get 2 moons (including Europa's shadow on the disc of Jupiter). As a perk, it looks like a "Great White Spot" was close to the GRS last night as well!

I thought I could get both, but it took me longer than expected to acquire Saturn, since it is about 10x dimmer. Now that I got something, I am confident that dedicating my entire laptop's battery-time and now knowing what settings I need to use to get Saturn to show up in the camera will result in a great image soon. I can get better focus and tweak the setup better; it was a good dry run for opposition next Saturday :)

#13 Tel

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Posted 21 April 2013 - 12:03 PM

Thanks Tel. :) I wish the ones I did with a barlow would have came out that nice. Oh well, maybe next time.



Hi Ben, It's sometimes the case, depending on seeing conditions etc., that the use of a Barlow lens will only produce a larger image and not have much in the way of an effect on resolution as the difference between your two images of Saturn demonstrates.

However, if it's merely an increase in scale you seek without losing resolution, your non-Barlowed, superb image of Saturn permits this very well.

(A little personal liberty taken with angular adjustment) :bigblush:

Best regards,
Tel

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#14 Maverick199

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Posted 22 April 2013 - 04:15 AM

Great images of Saturn both of you and Tel your reprocessed image of Ben's Saturn looks awesome. :bow:

#15 Peter9

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Posted 22 April 2013 - 05:33 AM

Thanks for the wonderful images lads. :bow: :bow: :bow:

Keep them coming.

Regards. Peter.

#16 ben2112

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Posted 22 April 2013 - 07:08 AM

Thanks Tel.. I need to remember to adjust the orientation of my camera. But going from eyepiece to camera. You tend to forget.

#17 Tel

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Posted 22 April 2013 - 08:49 AM

Hi Ben,

If, by orientation of your camera you're referring to the angle at which I pitched your superb image of Saturn, then pleaae rest assured that it was I who artificially place that angle on it !

Yours was indeed an accurate representation of Saturn's position whereas my efforts merely positioned it, (via Registax 6), as I personally like to see it ! :waytogo:

It was a spectacular piece of imaging on your behalf ! Comparable, in my opinion, with that which that great planetary imager, Damien Peach, has produced with this target ! :bow::bow:

Best regards,
Tel

#18 MartinTreadgold

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 07:04 AM

what cameras are people using on the nexstar? for example on my 5SE mount, it can't handle the weight of a DSLR for example..

#19 ben2112

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Posted 23 April 2013 - 07:22 AM

Not sure about others.. But Sam and I are using the Neximage 5. Its basically a webcam on steroids.

Neximage 5

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