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Kokatha man
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Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!!
      #5647305 - 01/28/13 01:21 AM Attachment (1019 downloads)

Excuse my corny equation in the thread title (where "seeing" is a reciprocal that influences optimal outcomes less & less as it gets better & better... )...but tbh, as I just said to Steve in another thread: "yes, the ASI120MM leaves the Flea3 in its wake more & more imho as I continue to test & image - first with sub 5 arcsec Mars, then Jupiter and now Saturn."

After the preceding I suppose I should restate the bit about "having no material interests whatsoever in ZWOptical" - although you might say Sam "bribed" me with 2 free cameras back in early September 2012 when he sent them to me for testing..!

Yesterday morning (27th Jan local date) we targetted Zuben elgenubi.....well, I think it was! to collimate again even though it had been done a few hours earlier for Jupiter - because I find that mirror shift (possibly from primary baffle/sleeve tolerances) creates collimation shifts when slewing the C14 from one area of sky to somewhere quite different.

The plus was it was reasonably close to Saturn in the sky - the minus was that seeing wasn't fantastic and coupled with a fairly dim star it made accurate collimation hard to gauge...

Normally I would do a quick Registax processing of the diffraction rings avi "on the fly" when I thought I was "on the money" to be absolutely certain, but clouds looming in the West had me go without this task.....I can't say I regret it really because during the second avi just when we were halfway through the green channel (I shoot B-G-R for Saturn at present) clouds scuttled anymore imaging - and this second blue channel looked even better than the one in the first & only complete set..!

But regardless of all this I was pretty pleased with the image outcome where a wealth of detail is clearly evident on Saturn's disk including cloud details and spots etc.....the Encke cleanly "split" right around and various other ring details also clearly displayed - I'm now starting to get quite excited considering it is a full 3 months from opposition and it'll reach 70 degrees down here in Oz then.....seeing was "fair to good" but I've seen much better judging by DR fluctuations and scintillation!!!

As to the ASI120MM - I'm finding having 7000 frames captured in each channel a pretty hard act to discount.....and as I also said before, somehow 5000mm f/l images seem to take significant upsampling very well - although I still haven't been able to use my variable image scale fitting due to clouds etc..!

Also, I might have to retract some of what I said about the ASI120MM using the iR742nM filter.....the night before I grabbed some very respectable images using said filter with Jove at about 30 degrees - I'll post those later.

Edited by Kokatha man (01/29/13 09:17 PM)


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martus
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5647314 - 01/28/13 01:35 AM

God, this is incredible! fantastic image! congratulate Darryl.

Regards,
martus


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Freddy WILLEMS
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: martus]
      #5647328 - 01/28/13 01:51 AM

!!!!!!!!!!! No words The Best Saturn I've seen this year !!
Congrats Darryl...
Darryl what was your capture frame rate and for how long in each channel ?


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Gupise
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5647360 - 01/28/13 02:35 AM

Great!

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BobRoss
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Gupise]
      #5647378 - 01/28/13 03:06 AM

w tee eff how?!

*re-reads*

WW TEE EFF HOW?!



Edited by BobRoss (01/28/13 03:07 AM)


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Tassydevil
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Gupise]
      #5647382 - 01/28/13 03:10 AM

Oh MY just super

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wenjha
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Tassydevil]
      #5647423 - 01/28/13 05:23 AM

Congratuations! Darryl
you are the early bird who catch saturn when I still catch jupiter.
don't you need to sleep young man


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billgg
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: wenjha]
      #5647453 - 01/28/13 06:23 AM

It's amazing Darryl!

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Kokatha man
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: wenjha]
      #5647469 - 01/28/13 06:36 AM

Thanks Martus, Freddy, Mirco, Bob, Graeme and Sam - most appreciated!

Freddy, I shoot at around 20% less focal length with the ASI1120MM than the Flea...this is after taking into account that 5000mm with the ASI120MM = 7500mm roughly with the Flea3.....ie, with the Flea3 I would shoot at around 9500mm.

I also make my imaging runs 7 minutes/420 seconds "in toto" with the ASI120MM.....as opposed to the 385 seconds with the Flea3 - I believe I could go a good 10-20 seconds per channel longer with the ASI120MM and still not have any worries.....I don't resort to WinJupos rgb combining with these single rgb sets (just AstraImage) although WinJupos combining might assist a tad...

With the ASI120MM I shoot 140 seconds each channel with 50fps for them all - with the Flea3 looking at last year's text file I got 55fps for the red shooting for 80 seconds.....45fps shooting for 100 seconds in green and 205 seconds at 27fps in blue...

This gave me about 4600 frames in each channel.....the ASI120MM at 800X640 resolution delivers 7006 frames in each channel and although gain might be slightly higher from a relative position 7000 frames gives you a lot a "noise-scrunching" and I suspect the noise in the ASI cam might be lower anyway...

The QE graphs tell certain things but not everything (in reference to something in Sam's thread) because although the blue and green sensitivity appears significantly higher than the icx618 up to about 640nM and lower than it after that point on the spectrum, the red channel still requires lesser gain for the ASI120MM to provide any specific histogram value...

Also, as I alluded to I might have to rethink my appraisal of the iR742nM response of the ASI120MM camera - I said it was "no slouch" but thought the Flea3 clearly out-performed it in this spectral zone.....the other night by using 800X640 and 50fps for the iR742nM I obtained some very pleasing images with Jupiter very low in the sky - it's allways good to drop the framerate back for iR imaging whether it's the Flea3 or ASI120MM.....but my (prior) appraisals on the ASI cam's iR742nM capabilities were using 512X400 (80fps) which was really being too severe on it imho..!


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Kokatha man
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5647470 - 01/28/13 06:36 AM

Thanks also Bill!

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MvZ
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5647485 - 01/28/13 06:59 AM

Awesome shot!

Lets trade Jupiter for Saturn again next year ok??


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ZuoZhao
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: MvZ]
      #5647559 - 01/28/13 08:14 AM

A shining Saturn!

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Rankinstudio
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: ZuoZhao]
      #5647663 - 01/28/13 09:33 AM

Fantastic Saturn, clean and crisp.

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Mike Phillips
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Rankinstudio]
      #5647710 - 01/28/13 09:56 AM

Darryl, I need to set my alarm! The ASI120MM has certainly caught my eye now.

Mike


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5647759 - 01/28/13 10:31 AM

Brilliant image Darryl, the detail is incredible! Can't wait to see what you do with this combo in good seeing closer to opposition

Clear Skies,
Brian


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gfeulner
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5647770 - 01/28/13 10:41 AM

MAN! Damian Peach move over! Like to see one when the C14 is collimated! Fantastic. Gerry

Edited by gfeulner (01/28/13 10:42 AM)


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lcd1080
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mike Phillips]
      #5647830 - 01/28/13 11:06 AM

Darryl, with resolution like that I'm wondering whether you can coax some detail out of the North Polar region as we get closer to opposition. I've got a question; how would you describe the nature of your diffraction pattern's imperfections? It looks like the rings on the right side of the image are overlapping somewhat; is that the primary issue in need of correcting?

Pete

Edited by lcd1080 (01/28/13 11:57 AM)


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Takashi
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: lcd1080]
      #5647904 - 01/28/13 11:40 AM

One of the best saturn I've yet to seen!

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Space Cowboy
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Takashi]
      #5647955 - 01/28/13 12:01 PM

Eye popping detail there Darryl! I'm feeling myself drwn to this camera more each day!

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Traveler
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Takashi]
      #5647958 - 01/28/13 12:02 PM

Fantastic!

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mitovka
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Traveler]
      #5647991 - 01/28/13 12:14 PM

Incredible!

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DuaneS
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Traveler]
      #5648004 - 01/28/13 12:19 PM

Amazing detail! WOW!!

Duane


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CanaryMax
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: DuaneS]
      #5648084 - 01/28/13 12:47 PM

Really nice this Saturn with its moons.

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HANTO
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: CanaryMax]
      #5648533 - 01/28/13 03:46 PM

Great shot, Darryl! Seems its not only a great Newtonian camera!
Did you mention your "device for amplification" (1.4 barlow)?

Regards
Torsten

Edited by HANTO (01/28/13 03:47 PM)


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Timthelder
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Traveler]
      #5648572 - 01/28/13 04:03 PM

Hat's off to you Daryl, That's a ripper for sure!

(wouldn't mind having some 'goodish' seeing myself!)

Cheers


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ToxMan
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Traveler]
      #5648628 - 01/28/13 04:25 PM

Pretty remarkable...polar hexagon is visible without having to "re-work" the image. Lots of the storm remnant. Great work, Darryl. Congrats.

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BKBrown
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: lcd1080]
      #5648785 - 01/28/13 05:31 PM Attachment (53 downloads)

Quote:

Darryl, with resolution like that I'm wondering whether you can coax some detail out of the North Polar region as we get closer to opposition...




Pete, I would say he did a pretty good job in this shot. There is some fine detail visible, and the polar region looks distinctly hexagonal to me. What do ya'll think?

Edited by BKBrown (01/28/13 05:36 PM)


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mikewirths
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5648835 - 01/28/13 05:53 PM

awesome image!!!!!!!!!

cheers

Mike


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lcd1080
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: BKBrown]
      #5648931 - 01/28/13 06:38 PM

Quote:

Pete, I would say he did a pretty good job in this shot. There is some fine detail visible, and the polar region looks distinctly hexagonal to me. What do ya'll think?




Oh I agree Brian, I do see the hexagonal outline in Darryl's image. I was just thinking that he might be able to capture some of the larger features within the hexagon as shown in this Cassini wide angle shot of Saturn's North Pole:

NASA Cassini image of Saturn's North Pole

Pete

Edited by lcd1080 (01/28/13 07:31 PM)


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ToxMan
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: lcd1080]
      #5649022 - 01/28/13 07:24 PM

Quote:

...I was just thinking that he might be able to capture some of the larger features within the hexagon...




I was thinking the same thing, Pete. This is pretty new ground. When conditions are right, I anticipate Darryl will increase the image size and shoot at f20? And, go for it. That is when I hope to see some of that kind of detail.


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RobertED
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: ToxMan]
      #5649058 - 01/28/13 07:37 PM

EXCELLENT image, Darryl!!! Beautiful work!!!

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Kokatha man
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: RobertED]
      #5649269 - 01/28/13 09:09 PM Attachment (69 downloads)

Emil, ZZ and David - thanks fellas, most appreciated!

Mike - I've turned all our alarms off.....I couldn't image the next morning because I was so darned tired..!

Thanks also Brian, Gerry, Pete, Takashi and Stuart: Pete, what you see is the miscollimation of my C14 for this image...when I'm not sure (and the scintillation of the DR's and the faintness of the star caused me to be so) I shoot a quick avi and process it "on the fly" - what you are seeing is the stacked DR's showing significant miscollimation.....but I looked at the clouds BEFORE I stacked the DR's and panicked and went with "near enough" which in the circumstances was the best thing to do - the clouds swamped us within minutes!!!

Thanks also Traveler, Michal, Duane, Max, Torsten,Tim, Paul, Mike and Robert.....we all do this stuff for our own personal reasons but it is really nice to get positive feedback - most of us sit out there under the sky and/or later on in front of a pc and it can be pretty solitary work, so positive feedback is good anytime!

Torsten, I'm running at about 1.2X atm - the SCT's really need an "image tamer" with these small-pixelled cameras.....I can slide the camera back & forth to go from 1.2X up to about 3X but it'll be in the 1.2X - 2X that I see most of the planetary imaging work will be done.....just haven't had one clear morning yet where clouds have stayed away to try my fitting - I'll post another pik of it later sometime.

Brian, Paul and Pete, I have no problems seeing the hexagonal outline of the North Polar zone in the images, I did a little simple modelling of what you would expect.....the left and right hand sides of it are parallel as one would expect and one can almost define (or imagine one can! ) that the left hand side reveals a small portion of the 5th side which "cuts back" out of view on the hidden side of the planet there as it would...

Being an obsessive/compulsive I wish that I'd had time to get accurate collimation - it can result in quite substantial increases in resolution - but under the circumstances I'm reasonably happy: over the next 3 months Saturn will grow a couple of arcseconds, go from 0.6 magnitude to 0.3, climb about 20 degrees higher in the sky and (hopefully! ) there'll be better seeing opportunities also along with me really coming to grips with image scales and settings with this great little camera.....and next time I might get time to collimate the bl##@! thing properly - oh, and I'll have a pair of proper glasses, being diabetic etc I need my eyes checked regularly and I sent my good titanium pair off to have specific computer lenses fitted, leaving me without anything but an old pair that are terrible to look through..!

Here's the red channel from the avi set, I might try a repro later also of the rgb - I've been so tired I walked into the edge of a door at home this morning and really busted up my forehead....!

Edited by Kokatha man (01/28/13 09:11 PM)


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sfugardi
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Traveler]
      #5649271 - 01/28/13 09:11 PM

Mo, Completely incredible! Detail and color are outstanding. I am just shocked that you are able to capture at 50fps for R. With that frame rate you are really freezing the seeing nicely. I cannot imagine how much better your Saturns will improve as it approaches opposition. You need to start your own website with a link to Saturn planetary processing DVDs selling for $29.99 a piece. I'm still waiting for my first Saturn view of the season. Excellent work and thanks for sharing everything

Regards,
Steve


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Az Frank
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: sfugardi]
      #5649318 - 01/28/13 09:43 PM

Have to agree with everyone else Darryl,one outstanding Saturn image for sure! Scary to think how good your images will be like later in the aparition!

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Sunspot
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5649373 - 01/28/13 10:18 PM

I've been so tired I walked into the edge of a door at home this morning and really busted up my forehead....!




I say better your forehead rather than something important like the telescope or computer

I am totally impressed by the quality of the image!

Paul


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AlanL
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Az Frank]
      #5649376 - 01/28/13 10:19 PM

Amazing stuff !! Thanks for sharing.

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5649438 - 01/28/13 11:00 PM

Nice Darryl!

Two questions:
1) Did you derotate the video streams?
2) Do you always check collimation that far out of focus?

I ran into a door like that once, but nobody believed me at work. They just laughed!

Glenn


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Kokatha man
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: DesertRat]
      #5649484 - 01/28/13 11:26 PM

Thanks Steve, Frank, Paul, Alan and Glenn - I appreciate the feedback!

Quote:

Nice Darryl!
Two questions:
1) Did you derotate the video streams?
2) Do you always check collimation that far out of focus?

I ran into a door like that once, but nobody believed me at work. They just laughed!
Glenn




No, these aren't derotated channels Glenn - I mentioned the outcome might be enhanced a tad if I did said, but I've really only woken up properly now (it's almost 3pm here)

What you're looking at is the diffraction rings stacked (around 800 frames) and a small amount of wavelets in R5, dressed in CS4 a tad.....I usually like to use something considerably brighter than this particular star (Zuben elgenubi) but I have problems with mirror shift and throwing collimation out as mentioned - I will rectify that the same way I did in my C11 when I get "around tuit."

The seeing wasn't fantastic despite the outcome: I pull the star-image extra focally and adjust camera settings untill I can clearly see the DR's and the poisson-point.....but this little star was scintillating quite a lot and the faintness of the image even with gain and gamma right up created a very off-putting pattern to judge!

I'll then try and crack fine focus and see if I can glimpse an Airy - but there was no way that was worth doing either in the seeing.....and those clouds were stampeding me!

Had I run the DR avi through Reggie and seen this image (the one displayed) I certainly would've fiddled quite a lot more - which would have been disastrous because I'd still have been just as tired still, most probably still whacked my head and cut it badly and had nothing to show for it whatsoever..!!!


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DesertRat
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5649519 - 01/28/13 11:48 PM

Darryl I understood you did not do a RGB derotation, my question had to do with the video recordings only. Since some were claiming to see details of the hexagonal pole - I was wondering how that was possible unless the video had been derotated.

A star in focus is the best collimation tool. Its actually difficult to not overexpose an infocus star. I have the gain practically off when I do. One align point in AS!2 and stack anywhere from 5-25% of the frames depending on seeing. And in 30 seconds you can have LOTS of frames. Use zoom to see the first ring better, gamma adjust to make more visible. Make sure your capture program preserves geometry (a recent beta of FireCap had a fault) so collimation adjust does'nt send it in the wrong direction! Fits files can cause uncertainty since different programs may y-flip the image.

Glenn


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5649556 - 01/29/13 12:19 AM

"B" Ring structure is quite evident. It hints at resolving some of the thin "Phono-groves".

Well done.

Edited by Eddgie (01/29/13 12:23 AM)


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Kokatha man
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: DesertRat]
      #5649697 - 01/29/13 04:32 AM

Thanks also Eddgie!

Quote:

Darryl I understood you did not do a RGB derotation, my question had to do with the video recordings only. Since some were claiming to see details of the hexagonal pole - I was wondering how that was possible unless the video had been derotated.

A star in focus is the best collimation tool. Its actually difficult to not overexpose an infocus star. I have the gain practically off when I do. One align point in AS!2 and stack anywhere from 5-25% of the frames depending on seeing. And in 30 seconds you can have LOTS of frames. Use zoom to see the first ring better, gamma adjust to make more visible. Make sure your capture program preserves geometry (a recent beta of FireCap had a fault) so collimation adjust does'nt send it in the wrong direction! Fits files can cause uncertainty since different programs may y-flip the image.
Glenn




Hi again Glenn!

First, the collimation routine I normally follow is Thierry Leagault's: http://legault.perso.sfr.fr/collim.html - I'm fairly certain all his image examples are stacked and quite possibly from an artificial star - but I might be wrong there!

I do find this one of the most comprehehsive/authoritive texts imho, but when I use the words "normally/usually" it's my preferred regimen if and when time & conditions allow it.....under anything but "very good" conditions I rarely see the Airy pattern onscreen visually - you're right about stacking revealing said of course - but (again imho) for me at least this is an iterative process from Fresnell Patterns/DR's through to AP's in very good conditions - and my regimen takes into account whatever is "best practice" at any particular time...

I'm quite confident of my regimen in normal circumstances Glenn, but there were so many factors impinging upon this that morning.....the mirror movement for one leading to the choice of a nearby star and its' dimness.....the rather unsteady nature of the onscreen image and clouds looming out of the West (sounds like a perfect "drama script"..! )

I was blissfully unaware of the mirror problem when I was only attempting imaging on Jupiter during the major part of its' apparition, but now with Saturn in the morning when I first took a look at collimation even though the scope had been sitting in very uniform (coolish) temperatures between midnight and around 4am, I was surprised to discover collimation had been quite markedly affected.....the only change being moving the scope from one part of the sky to another...

I will engineer 2 simple mirror-locking screws as I did on the C11 where they worked very well, assisting the primary focus screw's stabilising of the primary on its' sleeve/bearing around the primary baffle by supporting/locking the other 2 arms of the "triple-tree" assembly connected to the rear of the primary mirror assembly.

But you'll have to run your "Darryl I understood you did not do a RGB derotation, my question had to do with the video recordings only. Since some were claiming to see details of the hexagonal pole - I was wondering how that was possible unless the video had been derotated." past me again brother.

I'm at a loss to quite understand your question - I interpret it as suggesting that "unless each channel is first derotated and then combined there would be no possibility of discerning the "hexagonal" outline of the NPZ due to some application of "principles" of seeing/resolution/angular momentum etc of the relevant areas on that (smaller diameter) section of the Saturnian disk apropos the length of the recordings etc..?!?"

Apologies if I'm putting words in your mouth and am completely "off-target" with my interpretation thereof.....but to me it is quite obvious: I'm a skeptic at the best of times so I've just done a little "blind" interview with my eldest son who knows nothing about Saturn and its (roughly) hexagonal NPZ...

Looking at the image at 300% and ONLY being told that dark area at the bottom was the NPZ I asked him how he perceived it shape/outline.....without any coaxing or remotely suggestive inferences etc (you'll have to believe me on that one bro) he noted it clearly wasn't "curved/rounded" in the same manner the other bandings were and that it "sorta looked like it had sides to it." (his words)

I then gave him the spiel about the hex shape and when I dropped the size back to posted scale he agreed that it was quite reasonable to see a hexagonal outline.....he's an environmentalist who has specialised in Geophysical Information Systems mapping and interpolation/interpretation (not that saying this is anything other than that he has quite a bit of experience with Earth images and patterning!!!)

But I think my best response is to say that I believe I can see said shape quite clearly.....using very rough measurements the length of (what appear to me to be) the most obvious and "central" sides are 2 arcseconds & 1.6 arcsecs respectively, conservatively estimated and taking into account some foreshortening, well within resolution possibilities afaik...tbh I also think the second image in this other recent thread of mine (roughly) shows the said shape also, and a much inferior capture... http://www.cloudynights.com/ubbthreads/showflat.php/Cat/0/Board/Imaging/Numbe...

I respect the fact that you may well disagree totally with any or all of the above, and I guess that'd be a bit like my recent discussion with Fred where I don't think there was any real agreement.....of course there's allways going to be some hype when someone posts a half-decent image but like any specific formulae for imaging trains, processes & resolution etc I'm allways going to be more cognisant of practical outcomes - with as much skepticism & objectivity as I can muster (which is why I posted the Diffraction Ring pattern so as not to appear to be "guilding the lilly" re any possible critical appraisals...)

I readily appreciate that the "powers of suggestion" are easily all-consuming.....and CN certainly ain't immune to that phenomenum but in this case whilst I know I'm waiting for new glasses I don't think either factor is playing too great a part in my own appraisals..!

At any rate I will certainly be putting this to the WinJupos team when I email the image to them tonight..!

Edited by Kokatha man (01/29/13 04:34 AM)


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5649699 - 01/29/13 04:51 AM

...ps Glenn - you're not possibly confusing the much smaller (and imo completely unresolvable) North Polar Vortex, as opposed to the (huge) hexagonal wave pattern I believe my image clearly shows which is situated around 78 N....?

Each side of this hex is around 14000km in length with the "whole shebang" rotating in 10.7 hours (roughly) - I'll let you do the maths on how that relates to resolution & rotational rate etc.


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5649750 - 01/29/13 06:37 AM

Wow what an amazing image Daryll!

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mitchell Duke]
      #5649752 - 01/29/13 06:45 AM Attachment (58 downloads)

Thanks Mitchell - I appreciate your feedback!

Glenn - perhaps this might influence the debate a tad..?

Edit - just cleaned up (in CS4) slightly the very rough NP map I posted here .....

Edited by Kokatha man (01/29/13 08:13 AM)


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5649756 - 01/29/13 06:49 AM

That is soo cool. Absolutely incredible stuff...

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: MvZ]
      #5649982 - 01/29/13 10:18 AM

That polar projection doesn't look perfectly round to me. I can't say it's shape exactly, but it's not 100% round!

WOW!

Mike


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mike Phillips]
      #5650188 - 01/29/13 12:18 PM

I think there is no doubt you caught that hexagonal shape on the pole. Amazing stuff.

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Rankinstudio]
      #5650358 - 01/29/13 01:46 PM

Amazing stuff Darryl, you've set a new standard!

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mert]
      #5650396 - 01/29/13 01:58 PM

Another vote for non-circularity at the pole. It looks hexagonal. But, to be fair and honest, I think my mind sort of "expects" it. That is, I'm not sure it is as hexagonal as I think it is.

It is, however, clearly non-circular, which is an amazing feat. Congratulations.


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: bunyon]
      #5650560 - 01/29/13 03:20 PM

It somewhat cracks me up how skeptical people can be on this forum. What are the odds that his stack clearly rendered 4 sides of a hexagonal shape as an artifact? I'm sorry, but my mind isn't expecting a hexagon, and it is not even close to round. There is a very clear 4 sides of a 6 sided polygon there (IMHO) and I think this will be easily proven in later imaging runs that come out on this forum later in the season.

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5650579 - 01/29/13 03:28 PM

Darryl,
I understood you had not done a derotation of RGB frames, but was wondering if you had performed a derotation of the video streams. I understand now that you did neither.

Since the time of your recordings were under 2.5 minutes per channel and the fact the polar areas don't move much in that time, I'm ok with thinking that the hexagonal structure might be resolved. I hope you and others down south can demonstrate this further. Thats just my scientific background coming through. In no way did I want to dampen your enthusiasm or take anything away from your great image.

All the images Thierry shows are computer generated. I don't know if he uses an artificial star when actually collimating. But your idea of a mirror locking mechanism is good. Then one should be able to shoot directly to Thierry's 3rd step which is to collimate with a star in focus. Its good practice to end focus with main mirror using counterclockwise movement to load the mirror, lock and then focus with the Crayford. I know you know this already but for completeness sakes, and the others reading this, I thought it good to mention.

Glenn


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Rankinstudio]
      #5650591 - 01/29/13 03:32 PM

If that is referring to me, David, I'm not trying to be negative - I plainly stated that it looks hexagonal and did not say one word about "artifact". It clearly isn't an artifact. I even called it a "feat".

As to not expecting a hexagon, before I looked closely at it, I read several posts talking about a hexagon and I've seen the Cassini images of the hexagon. It's hard to divorce that from your expectations.

Like you, I think it's real and like you I think that later in the apparition - or, if not, in the next few years as the pole becomes more and more visible - this feat will be borne out as real. It's a stunning image and a real testimony to what good tech in the hands of one skilled in the arts can do at this point. If you must know, I've even put my money where my mouth is here (if you get my drift).

However, I think we should always tend toward the skeptical with any new imaging breakthroughs (or, for that matter, any new discovery).


EDIT: Maybe you were referring to Glenn's question about derotation - I think it a good question but based on little polar movement (as Glenn says above) I doubt it plays a huge role. To clarify my position: if all I had to go on was the original image, I'm not sure I'd buy it although it certainly looks hexagonal. I think the polar projection nails it, though.

Edited by bunyon (01/29/13 03:42 PM)


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: bunyon]
      #5650619 - 01/29/13 03:45 PM

Quote:

If that is referring to me, David, I'm not trying to be negative - I plainly stated that it looks hexagonal and did not say one word about "artifact". It clearly isn't an artifact. I even called it a "feat".

As to not expecting a hexagon, before I looked closely at it, I read several posts talking about a hexagon and I've seen the Cassini images of the hexagon. It's hard to divorce that from your expectations.

Like you, I think it's real and like you I think that later in the apparition - or, if not, in the next few years as the pole becomes more and more visible - this feat will be borne out as real. It's a stunning image and a real testimony to what good tech in the hands of one skilled in the arts can do at this point. If you must know, I've even put my money where my mouth is here (if you get my drift).

However, I think we should always tend toward the skeptical with any new imaging breakthroughs (or, for that matter, any new discovery).




Paul, it was not directed at you, there are more than a few posts that are doubtful in this thread. I have nothing wrong with skepticism, there just seems to be a very large dose of it on these forums at times. Sometimes I catch myself wondering how much of it is actually scientifically motivated... we are human after all. It got really bad on the last image of an impact on Jupiter, which was a stunning capture.

I share your sentiment, the image is a real feat. A combination of good seeing, a large scope, and a new camera with capabilities are not fully understood yet. Bravo to Darryl, the ASI120MM, and the C14.


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Rankinstudio]
      #5650632 - 01/29/13 03:50 PM

Fair enough - and certainly if the skepticism isn't scientifically based it shouldn't be there. Hey, I'd love to image the hexagon. Heck, I'd like to get a color Saturn. But that shouldn't let me doubt other's work.

As Glenn says, though, that science training makes one keep asking questions. It is almost rote at times. Questions get asked far past the point that most folks are convinced. Very, very occasionally, those extra questions uncover something interesting.

(I do recall the Jupiter impact thread. There were indeed some fairly unbelievable questions toward the end of that).


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: bunyon]
      #5650795 - 01/29/13 05:31 PM

Just gorgeous. Makes me think I should have gone for the ASI120MM instead of the ASI120MC.

Congratulations on a great image. Good luck with the head.


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5650975 - 01/29/13 07:19 PM

Quote:

...over the next 3 months Saturn will grow a couple of arcseconds, go from 0.6 magnitude to 0.3, climb about 20 degrees higher in the sky and (hopefully) there'll be better seeing opportunities also along with me really coming to grips with image scales and settings with this great little camera.....and next time I might get time to collimate...properly


Darryl I continue to see a hexagon in your image but any doubt held onto by others should fade in the near future when the factors you cite in the above quote begin to kick in. I for one can hardly wait to see what you'll come up with in April!

Pete


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: anemec]
      #5651059 - 01/29/13 08:02 PM

Thank you also Mert, Adam and Pete - most appreciated and I'm hoping for a good imaging season also!

Golly gee fellas, I'm the biggest skeptic you'd find in a month of Sundays!!!

As to scientific logic or any other types all this had me thinking about the a priori, axioms & Euclidean theorems.....please excuse me for digging a bit deeper by mentioning such "esoteric" philosophy/thought-processing into an AA thread..!

One definition of a priori:"A thinkers justification or entitlement in
forming a particular belief is a priori if it is independent of the content or kind of
any of the thinkers particular perceptual experiences."


Wiki's for axiom: "As used in modern logic, an axiom is simply a premise or starting point for reasoning.[4] Axioms define and delimit the realm of analysis; the relative truth of an axiom is taken for granted within the particular domain of analysis, and serves as a starting point for deducing and inferring other relative truths. No explicit view regarding the absolute truth of axioms is ever taken in the context of modern mathematics, as such a thing is considered to be an irrelevant and impossible contradiction in terms."

The esoteric I deliberately type as "esoteric" above - and old Euclid is also (slightly) relevant to this post....!

Tbh (and you can check the thread) I made no mention of the "Hex Storm" untill well after others had started debating said.....I didn't have one ounce of doubt mind you, but I do respect each and everyone's right to doubt, debate and even believe it isn't apparent...and still do so on this particular subject if they so wish, as a matter of fact!

I actually confirmed this shape with the red channel which I processed and loaded into WJ to create the NP map - all this before I'd even posted that red channel and before I got into my (alternative) long-winded rationale.....I wanted to be dead sure and I also wanted that confirmation via an rgb WJ compilation. (I have made said - obviously - and hopefully will post it later - although I want to "fiddle" with it a bit more yet. )

So I guess in loose terms I held "esoteric" knowledge and thus an advantage over everyone except my partner and "imaging comrade-in-arms" Patricia.....I apologise for taking my time revealing my complete hand but I do like a good debate - and you all know how I love to waffle on ad infinitum..!!!

- and old Euclid?

If we're going to be completely honest and accurate I believe we can clearly state that my image (particularly the NP projection) demonstrates a roughly polygonal outline to the (darker) NPZ with what could (fairly easily) be identified as vertices at the intersection of the (roughly) straight edges.....

The specific polygonal shape - a hexagon - is what is revealed in the infinitely more resolved Voyager images...although even at that resolution the shape could never defined as anything more than a "rough" hexagon in actuality.

Glenn - I don't contradict much if anything of what you've said on the subject of collimation (and yes, to my mind Thierry's images display a far-too-bright poisson point to be "real" imho...but that takes nothing away from the quality of that as a reference article! )

Also, you must appreciate that I'm not like most imagers in that the scope (aside and as well as from the mirror "sag" per se) is lifted and carried to my car and carried in it on a sled.....and even at my close-by dark sky site on the edge of the Murray Mallee (where I took this image) about 130km from home I travel the last 0.5 to 2km on bumpy dirt roads. (depending upon which of the 2 places I usually stop at)

I drive what you term an "SUV" or what we term a "4WD" or "Bush Basher" (Nissan Pathfinder) and the suspension is much harder than that of my old Ford station wagon...

I mention this because collimation is allways quite severely affected by the time I get anywhere and actually have the scope on the mount.....in fact I also suspect that some recent very high temperatures might've moved grease between the primary sleeve & baffle because a most surprising thing occurred whilst we were up there - I had to readjust the primary focus knob to throw the image sufficiently far out from the Moonlite to get it within the movement's range.....this could only indicate serious "sag" to me even though I do "load" the mirror with cc rotation of said knob...

I'm sure I'll rectify the problem but a complete fix will have to wait untill after this Saturn apparition.....I can counter the problem with my normal/usual obsessive collimation regimen but I want to dis-assemble the scope for a complete flocking job also - another aspect that folks have divergent views on but imo my work on the C11 with that made an enormous improvement to contrast enhancement...and I'll "kill two birds with one stone!"

Anyway, enough for now and I'll post the WinJupos combination later - not sure if it'll be an improvement but it will be slightly different..!


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5651068 - 01/29/13 08:07 PM

Wow!that's interesting! congratulations to Darryl's new discovery!I would like to getup early and try saturn!

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5651096 - 01/29/13 08:24 PM

Darryl,

Appreciate the "bush basher" mode of scope travel will add to some collimation issues. Been there, done that, we have plenty of bumpy dirt roads here as well! My old C11 was a collimation nightmare - you could here the mirror flop on that guy on meridian flips!

Look forward to your workng this data set. Any possibility of an animation of the n polar map? Not that I want to create more work for you, and I hope your head is better!

Lastly congratulations on an amazing early Saturn!

Glenn


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: DesertRat]
      #5651174 - 01/29/13 09:13 PM Attachment (111 downloads)

Hi all,

I don't know if this helps the discussion or is totally not useful, but I found a Cassini image of the hexagonal north pole storm and resized it to Darryl's image (side by side) for comparison. One caveat is the Cassini image was shot in IR. Also the tilt of the planet is different, but I don't know how to deal with that in PS or whatever. This is quite an interesting discussion and I'm enjoying all the ideas and thoughts.

Paul


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: DesertRat]
      #5651207 - 01/29/13 09:30 PM Attachment (56 downloads)

Thanks again Glenn and Paul - Paul, is that realy the image scale I used as it appears on your screen.....it's just that it looks considerably smaller than my image at the top of this thread (to me!) and has me wondering..? Most screens show the image as larger than the large HDMI that I use!


Quote:

Darryl,
Any possibility of an animation of the n polar map? Not that I want to create more work for you, and I hope your head is better!
Lastly congratulations on an amazing early Saturn!
Glenn




Hmmm - you mean one of those "rolling" types of animation created from a single image Glenn - like Emil posted some nice ones of about year or two ago..?

I'd have to learn how to do it first if that's a possibility .....I will definitely look into it if it's possible (remember I have only one set of rgb's) but I still haven't sent off my image to WinJupos or the Jove's to the BAA yet..!

Meanwhile here's that WJ derotation of processed/combined rgb's.....I'm sure I can do a bit better but I also have so many things to do around the place atm.....I can see small parts where one is up on the other and vice-versa and it's probably just my obsessive nature running wild anyway - a bit different rendering also...but here they are anyway...

First the "scientific" orthodoxy with South up!


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Traveler]
      #5651208 - 01/29/13 09:31 PM

That ones going to hold the title for a while. It's so sharp its weird. Great work!!!

Pete


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5651211 - 01/29/13 09:32 PM Attachment (47 downloads)

.....and one of those "good old" North up which some folks still see as "more conventional...

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Sunspot]
      #5651213 - 01/29/13 09:32 PM

I found this image - the sides aren't straight, they're a little wavy. Although on a scale we have no hope of imaging. Also, look at all that stuff going on inside it!

http://www.universetoday.com/98699/saturns-strange-hexagon-in-living-color/


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: bunyon]
      #5651216 - 01/29/13 09:34 PM

You realize you actually imaged the polar octagon shape at least partially. I didnt know that was even possible. Look at it - it's angular.

This is a title holder to be sure.

Pete


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: azure1961p]
      #5651240 - 01/29/13 09:56 PM

I wonder if the hexagon on Saturn has been imaged by professional mountain top telescopes; I've always thought the images here are competitive with what they produce. Wouldn't it be outrageous if you and the other Cloudy Night members in the Southern hemisphere made history by imaging the hexagon with undeniable clarity in April? No pressure though :-)

Pete


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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5651281 - 01/29/13 10:16 PM

You call that a Saturn? That's not a real man's Saturn. I could out-do that Saturn with my hands tied behind my back and my eyes closed!

That was just in case you were getting bored of all that praise. Now to be more serious

VERY VERY NICE DARRYL!!!!!
I wish I were able to do the stuff you guys do. Someday I hope! Regarding 7 min integrations, does your software compensate for axial rotation on Saturn? I'm just wondering if there's smudging of the hexagon? (can't see that, just wondering if that could happen.)

Like I said, very very nice! Jason H.


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: lcd1080]
      #5651288 - 01/29/13 10:20 PM

Pete,

Good question, I don't think it has been observed from earth based observatories. The last time the n pole of Saturn was well presented was way back around 1990-1992.

This lends credence I think to a "first" by Darryl!

The HST images of the time were sprinkled in artifacts due to heavy deconvolution of images from the then crippled optics.

Glenn


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5651310 - 01/29/13 10:38 PM

Gee Darryl, sorry, I didn't intend to open a can of worms by popping that NPZ enlargement I do goldsmithing and design stuff on the side and have a pretty good eye for a line...and that hex just jumps right out at me, guess it may not be as obvious to others. But I see it, that's my story, and I'm sticking with it

P.S. I've got to get one of these cameras!

Clear Skies,
Brian


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5651342 - 01/29/13 11:05 PM

Darryl,
You reminded me that you have only one set of rgb's. So no, the animation I was suggesting is not possible. But maybe next time!

Brian,
Sounds like you could be a co-discoverer since you mentioned it first in this thread.

Glenn


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Kokatha man
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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: Jason H.]
      #5651372 - 01/29/13 11:22 PM

Quote:

You call that a Saturn? That's not a real man's Saturn. I could out-do that Saturn with my hands tied behind my back and my eyes closed!

That was just in case you were getting bored of all that praise. Now to be more serious

VERY VERY NICE DARRYL!!!!!
I wish I were able to do the stuff you guys do. Someday I hope! Regarding 7 min integrations, does your software compensate for axial rotation on Saturn? I'm just wondering if there's smudging of the hexagon? (can't see that, just wondering if that could happen.)
Like I said, very very nice! Jason H.




I like it Jason - that is the sort of person I really am....!

We call it "stirring" and taking folks down a peg or two.....and I hope I never get that pathetic to not see the humourous side of anything (well, anything on these forums at least - there's enough really serious stuff going on around us to keep a perspective on all of our little pecadilloes)

I take this planetary imaging very seriousy, but I also take trying to be balanced and retain the lighter side very seriously also! .....hopefully folks pick up on that if they read through my tomes of writing!

I never had any trouble integrating 6.5 minute rgb runs with the Flea3 at greater image scales: I lucked some very hi-res images of Saturn's Great Storm back then that were very sharp on storm head detail using 6.5 minute avi's - I remember Brad and me having a few yarns on that topic and if I remember correctly he was using 7 minutes on Saturn and created some very nice images.....

You can see the derotated rgb images just above.....remember that although I shoot at 140 sec per channel they are really only the equivalent of around 7500mm on the Flea3 which could easily handle 6 minute total runs at up to around 9000mm or so using "classic" rgb combine methods such as AstraImage etc.....

I need to sit back and look at the WinJupos derotation image to see whether it picks up anything the "classic" AstraImage rgb combine didn't, plus I think I can process it a bit better also.....and remember, this collimation wasn't acceptable at all to me in normal circumstances except if I'd fiddled even a couple of minutes longer I would not have captured anything at all..!


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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5651384 - 01/29/13 11:25 PM

.....absolutely NOTHING to apolgise for Brian!!!

Yes, sure wish we'd had more time Glenn!


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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5651540 - 01/30/13 02:18 AM

K-man that is a stunning set you have there!!! The hexagonal shape is clearly there, cannot wait to have a shot at Saturn and see what comes up even though it's only up to about 42 degrees from my location. Bravo my friend!

p.s. what would you say is the max time I can shoot Saturn using a color cam (DBK21) at 5800FL?


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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5651566 - 01/30/13 03:07 AM Attachment (46 downloads)

here is the one from Cassini

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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: wenjha]
      #5651633 - 01/30/13 06:08 AM

When I mentioned it at the beginning of the thread, I thought this was a first (to resolve hexagon from ground-based telescope.) That is why I mentioned it. Because if we are in agreement, this is a considerable accomplishment. There were some great images of Saturn during the last apparition. But, we didn't have near the tilt. So, why look. This year will be a great apparition.

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: azure1961p]
      #5651831 - 01/30/13 09:06 AM

Quote:

That ones going to hold the title for a while. It's so sharp its weird. Great work!!!

Pete




I agree. I keep coming back to this image and am just mesmerized. I mean, never say never, images seems to get better at an amazing rate but I really have trouble imagining a better ground based amateur image than this. Maybe Darryl can catch a glint off Cassini as it orbits the planet.


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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: ToxMan]
      #5651850 - 01/30/13 09:14 AM

Best image of Saturn I have ever seen by an Earth based scope!

Congrats!!!!

John


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: DesertRat]
      #5651878 - 01/30/13 09:28 AM

Darryl, I captured your attachment and resized it by 1.5x, not sure how that relates to the actual size of your image.

I'm wondering if you should send the image to Glen Orton to see what he thinks. I would hope he could confirm one way or the other as this would be a fun target on Saturn to shoot for seeing as we may not have the "serpent storm" again.

Paul


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Sunspot]
      #5652135 - 01/30/13 11:47 AM

Hi Darryl,

Really excellent work, congratulations!!!

Best wishes, Dan


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: siriusc]
      #5652331 - 01/30/13 01:30 PM

I'm convinced. Well done! You should send me this for the magazine...

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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5652467 - 01/30/13 02:33 PM

You've been doing some fabulous work with the ASI camera for some months now Darryl; and this is icing on the cake!


Once my new scope is up and running, I'll be seriously looking at the ASI 120MM largely due to your experiences with it.


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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: John Boudreau]
      #5652752 - 01/30/13 04:50 PM

John,

You gotta be close to getting the 14" DK, right? I think this camera is going to be a perfect match for it. You'll never need to use a barlow with it. **green with envy**

Paul


Quote:

You've been doing some fabulous work with the ASI camera for some months now Darryl; and this is icing on the cake!


Once my new scope is up and running, I'll be seriously looking at the ASI 120MM largely due to your experiences with it.




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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: Sunspot]
      #5652851 - 01/30/13 05:43 PM

Quote:

John,

You gotta be close to getting the 14" DK, right? I think this camera is going to be a perfect match for it. You'll never need to use a barlow with it. **green with envy**

Paul





Paul, I wish it was 'close'. The primary was sent to the coater back in mid-December. After a few weeks went by with no finished product, Royce contacted the coater. They claimed that they never received it! The shipper has the receiver's signature, so they searched with no luck. As it stands now, Royce has ordered a new blank and the replacement primary will be a priority. He told me this was the first time such a thing has happened to him.

So the D-K will miss this Jupiter apparition, and probably miss much of Saturn this year too.

The ASI120MM will result in a sampling rate of about .117"/pixel with the optic's advertized native 6630mm focal length.


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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: John Boudreau]
      #5653208 - 01/30/13 09:02 PM

Thanks also (and/or again!) Agapios, Sam, "the Pauls" John, Dan, Sean & John - really appreciate the feedback and kind words.....makes me think of my bashed and bleeding forhead as a sort of "battle wound" even though it was after the event.....but I guess I could claim its' cause (extreme tiredness) was a result of the imaging efforts!

Agapios - my 5000mm (roughly 7500mm on 5.6uM sensors) would suggest 7 minutes osc runs are "easy" but you could try 8 or 9 minutes.....but then, why not split a 9 minute avi into 3X3mins avi's - I think AS!2 handles a 3-frame load so by processing the stacks from 3 of these you would imagine superior results.....my gut feeling would be that a slight bit of sharpening of each 3 minute stack would result in AS!2 working better, but it is such a good program I think that approach is well worth experimenting with.....or 3X2.5 minute avi's...

Paul (Bunyon) - heck, in my dreams maybe!!! Really, the seeing wasn't great and the collimation was crook imho.....but like anything, maybe shifting from Alpha Libra (Zuben elgenubi) across to Saturn made the mirror slip into better collimation (not inconceivable, but a bit like winning the lottery which I've never done! ) and that the seeing rose noticeably for the capture - sounds like a lot of coincidence but tbh a couple of things do make this scenario a possibility:

(1) The onscreen feeds were/are very nice, particularly the blue channel

(2) I was really surprised how good the end-images turned out because I didn't think from A Libra's DR scintillations that seeing was anything more than "reasonable" (despite my "goodish which was an after-appraisal!)

Small windows where the seeing rises markedly are quite the norm, as I'm sure I don't have to tell anyone here!

Paul - I see what's happened; you've dropped the image scale back because it needed to fit into the 800 pixel posting limits.....the actual image is considerably larger "as was."

John Rogers of the BAA has forwarded it on to a couple of relevant folks but I might send the info to some others also.

Sean, it'd be an honour to (possibly) have it in S&T.....I'll pm you to find out what you need re files etc...

John, that missing mirror is a real bummer - hope its' replacement gets the delivery a bit closer for you.....sound like around f19/20.....that should be great as Paul said.

I'm reworking the data (surprise! surprise! ) where I've placed a specific MAPs box around the NPZ and am using 4500 frames per channel instead of the 3000 p/c for the above images (still 53%+ qlty relative to the optimum frame) to see if i can eke out some more definition/clarity, especially in the NPZ region.....and wil do some Polar Projection Maps also and post sometime today... :)


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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5653575 - 01/31/13 03:25 AM Attachment (47 downloads)

.....ok, have half-processed the new stacks of 4500 frames per channel wherein I also placed a MAPs box around the NPZ - don't know if there's going to be much difference in the end but I did a "straight" RGB combine of this new repro data and used it to create a pair of Polar Projection maps.....including the red which Paul wanted to see.

I'm really pushed for time atm but it's cloudy also - what I really want is another crack at Saturn in reasonably good conditions asap..!

I've sorted out how I can "lock" the primary mirror in a way that should stop mirror shift/slump/sag and this is how I described my intended modus operandi to folks on another AA forum earlier today:

"...an aspect of the underlying problem that put me in the predicament with collimation I found myself in that morning looks like being an "easy fix" - much simpler than doing the same thing to my old C11 where I had to drill & tap 2 extra setscrews into the back housing of said scope (dis-assembled naturally! )

The C14 has 1/4"W (will they ever become obsolete?!? ) "locking screws" for freighting on its' rear that are unscrewed/loosened right off once you start using the scope.....I merely need to get some considerably longer replacements with (possibly) a wingnut for each and screw them back into these tapped holes...

This means that with the primary focus knob adjusted such that the primary/secondary position is set for the desired focal plane position within the Moonlite's focuser range, I can then "screw in" these longer 1/4"W setscrews to lock against or possibly screw into (just need to investigate this fact a tad more) the 2 other "branches" of the triple-tree arms & support the primary much more rigidly.....the primary focus knob is actually a setscrew attached to the 3rd arm of this triple-tree...which by screwing or unscrewing moves the primary mirror back & forth on a close-tolerance greased sleeve around the primary baffle/rear opening of these SCT's - for those who are unaware of how these instruments are engineered!

If the locking screws the scope came with originally only screwed up against these 2 other arms of the triple-tree I'll probably bore out the ends of the longer replacements and punch out a couple of Delrin tips for said like I used on my C11....."


Anyway, here's the 2 new Polar maps.....probably post the new WinJupos rgb late tonight if it turns out better than the standard one!

Edited by Kokatha man (01/31/13 09:25 AM)


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sunrutas
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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5653580 - 01/31/13 03:33 AM

Congrats Darryl, really amazing!

Kind regards, Roger!


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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: sunrutas]
      #5653635 - 01/31/13 05:52 AM

It can't get more convincing than that. Can I share that picture (with full reference of course) on a Dutch forum??

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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: MvZ]
      #5653708 - 01/31/13 07:05 AM

Thanks Roger!

Quote:

It can't get more convincing than that. Can I share that picture (with full reference of course) on a Dutch forum??




Of course you can Emil!

Tbh I'm a bit bewidered.....untill someone reminded me about it in my previous Saturn thread I had forgotten everything I'd read on the "Hex Zone" (calling it that sounds like some paranormal TV show... )

I just want to get some nice weather now to get out and try again, particularly if I could collect enough data to do a WinJupos multi-set compilation.....BAA's John Rogers just sent me this email a little while ago (I've just edited other people's names to initials to show some privacy. )

I also wholeheartedly agree with the last paragraph below.....gives us all something to aim for - and I think my previous comments about not being able to image vortexes within the NPZ hex by us amateurs isn't correct anymore - given very good conditions!

"Hi Darryl,
Below are some comments from two professional Saturn scientists; they are very impressed! I sent it to them partly because we are just finalising a big multi-author paper on "Professional-amateur collaboration in planetary science" and this was the last sentence in the draft section on Saturn:

"As Saturn's North hemisphere receives more and more sunlight on the next few years the expectations are that amateurs may be able to observe Saturn north polar hexagon and possibly cyclonic vortices."
- John


R,
[Jaw dropped in amazement] - that's incredible! Please pass my hearty congrats along to the observer, that's the first amateur image I've ever seen of Saturn's hexagon! Are there other observers out there who can rightly claim to have 'seen it first'? This might almost be worthy of a press release of some sort. I'm off to Hawaii tomorrow to try to image this in the thermal....
Cheers,
L


Hi L,
I remember your talk at the DPS-IOPW Workshop about Saturn and images obtained by amateurs and what could be expected. I've received this fantastic amateur observation of Saturn's North Polar Hexagon and thought you might be interested in it. You can ask John Rogers for mor information about this particular image. There are some other observations of the hexagon but this one is the best so far. A similar image by Damian Peach could produce better results if projected in polar coordinates.

More of this type of images will follow in the next few months. Saturn is still very low in Europe's sky and most amateurs are still imaging Jupiter which is getting worse. Let's see what they can achieve with Saturn in April
R."


Edited by Kokatha man (01/31/13 07:06 AM)


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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5653725 - 01/31/13 07:27 AM

I think the point that others may have made such an image is not quite right, as I said in "my" thread on this. Damian (or whoever) might have an image that WOULD show it if done with polar projection. But that isn't, or shouldn't be the point, in my opinion. You did the projection first.

The typical test is who recognized it first and reported it first. Seems pretty clearly to be you. I mean, I'm kicking myself a bit for not doing it, but that is always the case. I kick myself I didn't come up with the iphone, too.


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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: bunyon]
      #5653726 - 01/31/13 07:29 AM

By the way, being a chemist (scientist type, not pharmacist), I see benzene in the hexagon. I think it may need a better name than "hexagon". Or some adjectives at least.

Maybe Santa's Hexagon.


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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: bunyon]
      #5653753 - 01/31/13 07:43 AM

HPZ = hexagonal polar zone

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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: ToxMan]
      #5653849 - 01/31/13 08:58 AM

That last set is even more convincing Darryl. Amazing stuff.

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Kokatha man
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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: Rankinstudio]
      #5653889 - 01/31/13 09:23 AM

Thanks again Paul, Paul and David!

The WinJupos repro using 4500 frames per channel will be finished tomorrow as will the Maps from said.....hoping to sort the primary mirror lock business out also then and might head back up to our imaging site afterwards, as the weather could be promising...fingers crossed!!!

Here's a link to a write-up:
http://planetaryweather.blogspot.co.uk/2013/01/saturns-hexagon-viewed-from-gr...


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bunyon
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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5653911 - 01/31/13 09:32 AM

Wonderful write up, Darryl!

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Eddgie
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5654417 - 01/31/13 02:25 PM Attachment (22 downloads)

No one should have any doubt that you captured the uneven shape of this feature.

Cassini has many images that show it clearly, though the best shots are at non-visible waveleghts (though there are visual wavelenth pictures that show it as well).

Here is a public domain Cassin pole image that shows the area, but I do not know the wavelength..

Edited by Eddgie (01/31/13 02:26 PM)


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Freddy WILLEMS
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Traveler]
      #5654421 - 01/31/13 02:26 PM

Hi Darryl can I post this in my FaceBook astronomy planetary Imagers group with credits for the pro's to see ?

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Eddgie]
      #5654438 - 01/31/13 02:35 PM

I popped this over to the fine Google Plus folks I get the privilege of hanging out with for the Virtual Star parties. I hope the likes of Emily Lakdawala, Pamela Gay and Phil Plait chime in with something enlighting!

https://plus.google.com/108750361778865447048/posts/3a8JSq9hA9o

Hats off to us amateurs!

Mike


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mike Phillips]
      #5654460 - 01/31/13 02:46 PM

Very nice write-up Darryl, congratulations on such a
spectacular image you have been able to capture!!
No doubts whatsoever on the hexagonal structure you
have captured, great stuff!!


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mert]
      #5654484 - 01/31/13 03:03 PM

Also, if you look at some of Damian Peach's 2012 photos, there are some rounded corners on the NPZ features too.

Mike


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Freddy WILLEMS
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mike Phillips]
      #5654612 - 01/31/13 04:12 PM

See 'em all over..

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bunyon
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mike Phillips]
      #5654631 - 01/31/13 04:27 PM

Quote:

Also, if you look at some of Damian Peach's 2012 photos, there are some rounded corners on the NPZ features too.

Mike




I suspect there are quite a few out there. I'd think any really good Saturn from last year has a decent chance.


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poita
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: bunyon]
      #5654650 - 01/31/13 04:38 PM

I'd say you definitely captured the Hexagon there.
Why? Because I didn't know about the Hexagon, and when I saw your image my first thought was "Wow, nice image, shame that your processing made the pole go all hexagonal though..." Then I read the rest of the thread and felt like a goose!

But I saw it when I *wasn't* expecting to see it, so it isn't people's expectation making them see something that isn't there.


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MvZ
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Freddy WILLEMS]
      #5654675 - 01/31/13 04:50 PM Attachment (38 downloads)

Hope you don't mind oosting this here. I just processed three infrared images I made in May 2012 in infrared light when Saturn was at 30 degrees altitude. The images were rather noisy, especially towards the poles. The rings weren't open that much, but it appears the hex can be seen!

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mike Phillips]
      #5654730 - 01/31/13 05:22 PM

Damian's December 27th Saturn image definitely shows hints of the hex pattern. I think if the image was contrast enhanced it would stand out even more.

Paul


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Sunspot]
      #5654761 - 01/31/13 05:41 PM

All this discussion raises an interesting question (to me at least): If an amateur telescope can capture this detail, might if have been seen by classic visual observers, such as E. E. Barnard, Percival Lowell, or even Steve O'Meara? The 36" Lick refractor used occasionally by Barnard was in an area of good seeing conditions (unlike Yerkes where he later worked). Barnard once observed an occultation of Iapetus by Saturn's ring system and noted (quantitatively) that there were variations in the amount of dimming, presumably due to variations in ring density (presaging the discovery of the hundreds of minor ring gaps). He made this observation with a 12" refractor. Why it it that Barnard never saw the polar vortex feature? Is it possible that the feature did not exist at that time?

JimC


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ToxMan
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mirzam]
      #5655157 - 01/31/13 09:57 PM

I found an article (PubMed, of all places had the abstract) that says the first ground based observations were in 1990 and 91.

abstract


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: ToxMan]
      #5655276 - 01/31/13 11:05 PM

Thanks again everyone - Poita, glad you reappraised my processing skills!

Freddy, of course you can use the image(s) - sure I'm keeping all the prize-money .....but this is what the Amateur Astronomer's community is all about imho, and why this post got the attention it has - it's all about our collective achievments and the (growing) relevance of our contribution to important "research" imho.

Paul, the Pic du Midi observations mentioned in that paper are also referred to in Leigh Fletchers blog link I provided earlier

http://planetaryweather.blogspot.co.uk/2013/01/saturns-hexagon-viewed-from-gr...

Hoping to post the WinJupos 4500 frames per channel in a little while if it's any improvement.....then we're off to our dark sky site for another couple of night targetting The Ringed One - and I think I've fixed the primary mirror slippage with a couple of setscrews and nuts from my workshop...


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5655413 - 02/01/13 01:04 AM Attachment (50 downloads)

Cheerio to this data from me.....leaving for the Murray Mallee right now (and picking up my new laptop glasses on the way!!! )

Here's a quick WinJupos combine of the rgb channels using the 4500 frames per channel I spoke about - don't know how it compares and it was pretty rushed to say the least, but here it is anyway for appraisal!


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5655513 - 02/01/13 02:51 AM

this one is very clear!Hex...
Quote:

Cheerio to this data from me.....leaving for the Murray Mallee right now (and picking up my new laptop glasses on the way!!! )

Here's a quick WinJupos combine of the rgb channels using the 4500 frames per channel I spoke about - don't know how it compares and it was pretty rushed to say the least, but here it is anyway for appraisal!




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CPellier
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: wenjha]
      #5655534 - 02/01/13 03:30 AM

This absolutely great work !

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ToxMan
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5655705 - 02/01/13 07:48 AM

We can't overlook in our excitement that there is plenty of other detail worthy of comment...

First, the storm remnant is very obvious. And, there are a number of spots visible along the northern latitudes' bands. I'm a little surprised that Enke division is not more obvious?? Especially when a number of other features are visible. But, I think is is the hardest feature to resolve.

May you be blessed on your excursion!


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mirzam]
      #5655809 - 02/01/13 08:37 AM

Quote:

All this discussion raises an interesting question (to me at least): If an amateur telescope can capture this detail, might if have been seen by classic visual observers, such as E. E. Barnard, Percival Lowell, or even Steve O'Meara? The 36" Lick refractor used occasionally by Barnard was in an area of good seeing conditions (unlike Yerkes where he later worked). Barnard once observed an occultation of Iapetus by Saturn's ring system and noted (quantitatively) that there were variations in the amount of dimming, presumably due to variations in ring density (presaging the discovery of the hundreds of minor ring gaps). He made this observation with a 12" refractor. Why it it that Barnard never saw the polar vortex feature? Is it possible that the feature did not exist at that time?

JimC




It's a very interesting question, I think. It would be nice to know if the hexagon has been around for a long time or is a temporary feature (though, note that 1986 is now 27 years ago). However, I doubt that it could be observed, definitively, visually. It would most likely not have been observed by a northern observer - when the North Pole of Saturn is most visible, Saturn is at its southernmost point in Earth's sky. In addition, I think if one is visually observing Saturn, one would be watching for moments of great seeing while the planet shimmered around those moments. I think it would be hard to convince oneself, let alone others, that any perceived hexagonal shape was the real shape and not some illusion brought about by strange seeing.

It might be worth going through the notes to see if anyone ever wrote down that they were fooled into seeing a hexagon at the North Pole - I doubt they would have reported such, but they may have noted it, if they could see it.

It's striking how much finer the detail is in modern amateur images than in the best sketches of professional observers with much larger instruments. Their observations were, in turn, much better than the photography of their era.

Going in the other direction in time, I think with the rate imaging tech and skill is increasing, someone will nab the north polar vortex, if just as a dot at the center of the hexagon, by the time Saturn starts back north in our skies. Already there is hint of detail (perhaps real, perhaps not) in Darryl's hexagon.


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lcd1080
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: bunyon]
      #5656102 - 02/01/13 10:48 AM

So the race is on to capture Saturn's north polar vortex!

I wonder what type of image analysis would be required to verify that the photographic signature of the vortex is truly indicative of the actual structure.

Pete


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: lcd1080]
      #5656147 - 02/01/13 11:09 AM

ZW Optics should pay you. What a great publicity for this what seems like a great camera.

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5656203 - 02/01/13 11:47 AM

Words fail on your latest process Darryl. As you say down there - crikey! And here in the old west some say Ace High!

Glenn


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Fogboundturtle]
      #5657434 - 02/02/13 12:10 AM

Thanks again for the kind comments!

Paul, I'm sure hoping to grab the Polar Vortex if at all possible - I believe the dark "border" to the NPZ is "real" but as to whether anything inside the "Hex" is or not I cannot say.....but this is half the fun of our efforts as AA'ers imo - allways trying to push the boundaries!

Quote:

ZW Optics should pay you. What a great publicity for this what seems like a great camera.




Well, Sam did give me 2 free cameras, so I really can't complain.....and it was a buzz to be so involved with Sam, Torsten & Emil in getting the camera "out-there" with such a great program as FireCapture: I looked upon my role as the "whip-hand" - Sam did his share of pleading for mercy as I kept harassing him to improve this or that etc!

Indeed that was a real privilege.....not sure if I said this before but it was a real "leap of faith" to relinquish using my Flea3 and the first time I was at Tennant Creek for Jupiter I was trying to compare each and jumping back & forth - the second time I was up there I made the decision to go with the ASI120MM solely and I was rewarded with some great images from then on.....that when I'd thought that this year in Oz was going to be very poor for Jove's apparition!

Paul & Glenn - I ended up rushing the last process in all the most important stages, I suspect the Encke isn't so kindly dealt with because of this and/or maybe WinJupos isn't so focused upon ring detail, because I did notice the rings didn't fit into the Alignment Frames the way the disk does.....the first image in this thread shows Encke much better imo...I might repro those stages when we're back home.

Also, here's part of Prof. Agustin Sanchez-Lavega's email to me where he refers to his images back in 1991 at Pic du Midi:

"Dear Darryl,
Thanks a lot for this incredible image. As you mentioned probably is the first one of the hexagon taken by an amateur astronomer.
One Saturn year ago (in 1991)! we took Saturn CCD images with the Pic-du-Midi Obs., 1 m telescope that marginally showed the hexagon and the Polar Spot then present. A paper was published in Science (attached)."


Last night was a total cloud-out but we're ready if the opportunity arises; at the very least I'd like to test the stability of the primary mirror with my new locking mechanism, and how collimation and scope movement is affected.....it was such an easy thing to make and I suspect from "feeling" the primary adjuster knob that the mirror is quite "locked" in its' present position so hopefully no more movement.....also hope I've set the focal plane correctly!!! although it will be simple to re-adjust.

Lastly here's the link to S&T's online "sky at a glance" for those interested.....

http://www.skyandtelescope.com/observing/ataglance?pos=left


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Sunspot
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5657727 - 02/02/13 09:05 AM

I'd like to find out what optics you use to get 5000mm on the C14. Even my shortest barlow gives me 7200mm. I'd love to get to about 5000 to 6000mm especially imaging Saturn.

I did my Jupiter images at 800x640 as suggested and that definitely worked out better...haven't processed any yet but it felt better at the eyepiece end.

I WAS hoping to try Saturn again this morning (seeing was miserable yesterday morning) but got nixed by the nasty "C" word.


Thanks again!
Paul


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sfugardi
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Sunspot]
      #5657757 - 02/02/13 09:23 AM

Mo, awesome work! I still prefer the 1st image. Check out the downloads on it, it's already up to 427 and counting! I think that is some kind of forum record. Hats off to you

Regards,
Steve


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Sunspot]
      #5657797 - 02/02/13 09:46 AM

Quote:

I'd like to find out what optics you use to get 5000mm on the C14. Even my shortest barlow gives me 7200mm. I'd love to get to about 5000 to 6000mm especially imaging Saturn.
Paul




Paul - I use a TeleVue 2X barlow's lens element unscrewed from the rest of the Televue chrome barrel and black clamping section.....the exposed male thread end (ie, the rear) yields approx. 1.2X when right up hard against the camera's body section around the sensor (a few mm's from the sensor itself)

The other end of this lens element (ie, with an internal female thread) actually is the same thread (surprise! surprise! ) as the cheap GSO 1&1/4" extension tubes.

I have a special fitting I made up that allows me to vary the amplification from 1.2X to around 3X using the Televue 2x element merely by sliding the outer section in or out.....I'll post another pik showing its latest version sometime soon...

Steve, I agree presonally, the first shows the Encke much better imo, as I said to Paul (Toxman) recently...

I think the popularity is in part because all our images are sort of "common property" in that we are all out there trying our best...and if one gets a bit lucky on something it really could be any number of us who could've been that particular individual.....


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lcd1080
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5658011 - 02/02/13 12:02 PM

Quote:

...Also, here's part of Prof. Agustin Sanchez-Lavega's email to me where he refers to his images back in 1991 at Pic du Midi:

"Dear Darryl,
Thanks a lot for this incredible image. As you mentioned probably is the first one of the hexagon taken by an amateur astronomer.
One Saturn year ago (in 1991)! we took Saturn CCD images with the Pic-du-Midi Obs., 1 m telescope that marginally showed the hexagon and the Polar Spot then present. A paper was published in Science (attached)."



Were the Pic-du-Midi CCD images a part of the paper that was published in Science? It would be fun to see how the CCD cameras of 22 years ago compare with the current generation of photographic instruments.

Pete


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5658943 - 02/02/13 09:18 PM

thanks Darryl
I awe you

Quote:

Thanks again for the kind comments!

Paul, I'm sure hoping to grab the Polar Vortex if at all possible - I believe the dark "border" to the NPZ is "real" but as to whether anything inside the "Hex" is or not I cannot say.....but this is half the fun of our efforts as AA'ers imo - allways trying to push the boundaries!

Quote:

ZW Optics should pay you. What a great publicity for this what seems like a great camera.




Well, Sam did give me 2 free cameras, so I really can't complain.....and it was a buzz to be so involved with Sam, Torsten & Emil in getting the camera "out-there" with such a great program as FireCapture: I looked upon my role as the "whip-hand" - Sam did his share of pleading for mercy as I kept harassing him to improve this or that etc!

Indeed that was a real privilege.....not sure if I said this before but it was a real "leap of faith" to relinquish using my Flea3 and the first time I was at Tennant Creek for Jupiter I was trying to compare each and jumping back & forth - the second time I was up there I made the decision to go with the ASI120MM solely and I was rewarded with some great images from then on.....that when I'd thought that this year in Oz was going to be very poor for Jove's apparition!

Paul & Glenn - I ended up rushing the last process in all the most important stages, I suspect the Encke isn't so kindly dealt with because of this and/or maybe WinJupos isn't so focused upon ring detail, because I did notice the rings didn't fit into the Alignment Frames the way the disk does.....the first image in this thread shows Encke much better imo...I might repro those stages when we're back home.

Also, here's part of Prof. Agustin Sanchez-Lavega's email to me where he refers to his images back in 1991 at Pic du Midi:

"Dear Darryl,
Thanks a lot for this incredible image. As you mentioned probably is the first one of the hexagon taken by an amateur astronomer.
One Saturn year ago (in 1991)! we took Saturn CCD images with the Pic-du-Midi Obs., 1 m telescope that marginally showed the hexagon and the Polar Spot then present. A paper was published in Science (attached)."


Last night was a total cloud-out but we're ready if the opportunity arises; at the very least I'd like to test the stability of the primary mirror with my new locking mechanism, and how collimation and scope movement is affected.....it was such an easy thing to make and I suspect from "feeling" the primary adjuster knob that the mirror is quite "locked" in its' present position so hopefully no more movement.....also hope I've set the focal plane correctly!!! although it will be simple to re-adjust.

Lastly here's the link to S&T's online "sky at a glance" for those interested.....

http://www.skyandtelescope.com/observing/ataglance?pos=left




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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: wenjha]
      #5659062 - 02/02/13 10:49 PM

.....send any money you don't need to the "Build Kokatha man A Huge Transportable Telescope" fund Sam...!!

Pete, I've looked at the pdf of that paper (too big to post, almost 6Mb and you need to register/login for the link)- but here is the link again to Leigh Fletcher's blog where you can go to the Pic du Midi report if you want to...

http://planetaryweather.blogspot.co.uk/2013/01/saturns-hexagon-viewed-from-gr...

I'm glad I wasn't trying to convince anyone here of the hex shape with the images therein.....but as you point out, ccd's have made enormous advances in that time!!!


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5659357 - 02/03/13 04:38 AM

Hoping to image in the morning if these clouds stay away.....this morning we spent a lot of time really nailing collimation only to see clouds manifest very quickly and blot out the sky just before we were about to head for Saturn...

But them's the breaks and it happens to us all - often constantly!

I got an email from Mike Foulkes, the Director of the BAA's Saturn section today: amid all the hub-bub about the NPZ's hexagonal shape his email suggested that probably the more/most important aspect of these images is that they very clearly show the storm activity in the Nthn. Hemisphere which has only been hinted at in most current images...

Thinking about all this atm, I hope that in hindsight I'm not blamed for any "flood" of Polar Projection maps on the forums - but I do think they will be very informative as we seek to image the Polar Vortex.....and they look quite cool!


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5659459 - 02/03/13 07:33 AM

Amazing set of images. Congrats Daryl.

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: ZielkeNightsky]
      #5659972 - 02/03/13 01:11 PM

Looking at the blog again, it's evident to me that other parts of Saturn's cloud structure have flat segments as well. Not just the north pole. I suspect that this has already been noted and studied by the Cassini folks.

JimC


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mirzam]
      #5660257 - 02/03/13 04:02 PM

Congrats Darryl!

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mitchell Duke]
      #5660383 - 02/03/13 05:16 PM

Thanks for your comments Lars, Jim and Mitchell.

It's a fairly long read (which of my posts isn't?!? ) but for those interested here's some correspondence between myself, Mike Foulkes (BAA Saturn Section Director) and John Rogers (BAA Jupiter Section Director) wher John initially commented on Ring A's seeming transparency at certain points in my image - something I think Paul (Toxman) commented upon specifically earlier on.....initially I replied with the observation that it has been a feature of numerous imagers' Saturn images from Damian Peach down.....here's the main parts of the commentary so far...with some slight editing. :)

Mike Foulkes: "Ring A is certainly translucent. This was first demonstrated by a stellar occultation observed visually in 1917. The start faded by quite a bit but was still visible when it passed behind ring A. It returned to full brightness when it passed behind the Cassini's division. This effect was seen in subsequent occultations. And the Shadow of the Rings on the Globe can be seen through Ring C with the appropriate observing geometry.

I have seen the effect shown on your images in a number of other images.

I have had a look at a few images in the archive taken when the south face was presented to the Earth. On some images there is a slighly brighter patch on Ring A coincident to where each of the limbs would be. This gives the impression that the limb is visible through Ring A - not only in monochrome images but in some colour images as well.

On some images Cassini's division appears dark where visible, except close to one limb where this patch seems to have spilled over onto the division. This gives the impression that one limb is visible through cassini's division but not at the other.

This was not always visible on images taken by the same observer."



John: "My memory from visual obs'ns and from many images, is that Ring A is not generally transparent/ translucent. However, the absolute reference must be Cassini images, and two are attached.

As you see, Ring A was clearly translucent in one image (closeup with Ring A at bottom of field), but not in the other (taken with the sun directly behind the camera; the rainbow colours in the sun reflection must be due to the spacecraft movement between the R,G,B images).

I suppose the ring is translucent in the right conditions, but not when at lower inclination nor lower phase angle (i.e. near opposition, when the glare masks features behind). Indeed it appears weakly translucent in some amateur images, inc. Damian's best-quality ones, so there could well be some reality in the appearance on your image -- my surprise was probably over-stated.

However, it looks as though it has been enhanced in your image by processing, which is also evident in other features of the image: the 'Terby spot', and dark bands parallel to the edge of the planet and the rings, and multiple bands within the rings (inc. in images by Damian, but not by Cassini)

These are common on most observers' Saturn images, and I suppose that they are due to the very high contrast across these sharp boundaries, combined with the strong processing needed to bring out small low-contrast features on the planet."


Darryl: "Hi Mike - thanks for replying: John's response and my reply are in this email - I don't want to start any "turf wars" but it seems to be similar to your own response.....anything else you might feel you wish to add, please feel free to do so if you have the time..."

Darryl: "Hi John - thanks for the reply.....something to think about ths morning over tea & toast after 3 straight mornings of clouds appearing out of nowhere just after collimating rituals following 3:30am risings and setting up procedures....!

I thought this place (just outside of "Palmer") must've been named after somewhere in England because of the weather this morning (one of my less colourfull mutterings! ) but I see I'm wrong on that one!

Anyway, it sounds like another of those artefacts induced through processing that is a product of "natural" illumination parameters - my paraphrasing of your more detailed explanation, just as the "Brightside artefact/rind" is most often visible on processed Mars' images unless dealt with in post-processing, and sometimes on Jupiter too - although with Jove it usually indicates "strong" processing...as you noted for this particular Saturn image for the selfsame reasons you articulated at the end of your email.

Thanks once again and I appreciate the comments you've made here as well as those Mike has sent me also.....something to reflect upon as we sit out this little run of frustrating weather.....oh for a "cloud filter!!!"


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5660730 - 02/03/13 09:00 PM

I really have interesting to build one 14" or 16"scope this year.maybe start from the small one 14" at first

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: wenjha]
      #5661421 - 02/04/13 10:09 AM

Here's a great HST animation that shows the feature's subtleness quite well.

http://youtu.be/gvptWeFPWIg

Mike


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mike Phillips]
      #5661649 - 02/04/13 12:19 PM

Thanks Mike, the interesting thing is that when one pauses the HST animation the hexagon isn't immediately obvious. Only when the animation is running or when viewing a polar projection does the hexagon "jump out" at the viewer.

Pete


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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: lcd1080]
      #5661821 - 02/04/13 01:47 PM

Quote:

Thanks Mike, the interesting thing is that when one pauses the HST animation the hexagon isn't immediately obvious. Only when the animation is running or when viewing a polar projection does the hexagon "jump out" at the viewer.

Pete




Agreed, and I'm sure there's cassini animations to back up the mighty HST's congruent assessment to ours!


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Kokatha man
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mirzam]
      #5662080 - 02/04/13 04:29 PM

Quote:

Looking at the blog again, it's evident to me that other parts of Saturn's cloud structure have flat segments as well. Not just the north pole. I suspect that this has already been noted and studied by the Cassini folks.
JimC




Good point Jim - we noted ourselves that the demarkations between bands displayed various segment shapes.....I joked that Pat was seeing "semi-hexes" almost everywhere!


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Kokatha man
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Mike Phillips]
      #5662092 - 02/04/13 04:35 PM

Quote:

Here's a great HST animation that shows the feature's subtleness quite well.

http://youtu.be/gvptWeFPWIg

Mike




Very nice image animation Mike..!

Has me wondering what wavelength(s) this was images in..?

Used different filters with some nice seeing this morning for Saturn and expect some interesting outcomes when processing is finished...but tomorrow morning holds more promise so we'll stay till then and return home to finish of all the processing..!

It was quite something as the session ended with the scope pointing almost vertically skyward - an indication of the elevation we're starting to enjoy down here now!!!


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bunyon
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5662112 - 02/04/13 04:51 PM

I had that skyward view of Jupiter from the Keys in December. It is, indeed, weird. In a good way. Have tomorrow.

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Fogboundturtle
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: bunyon]
      #5662144 - 02/04/13 05:17 PM

The camera is great but I believe the operator was greater. That's a picture I would probably never achieve in my lifetime. just simply amazing.

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Trevor Durity
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Fogboundturtle]
      #5662392 - 02/04/13 08:00 PM

Awesome images!!! I just logged into the forum to see if there were any opinions on the 120 before I purchase one, and seeing your results have dispelled all fears. Gotta get me one of these! It'll be quite a step up from the ol' Toucam ;-)

Amazing work Darryl!


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Kokatha man
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Trevor Durity]
      #5662769 - 02/05/13 12:41 AM

.....it (Saturn) was at 67 degrees for our last iR run Paul: atm it hits around 68 degrees about 7am.

OperaterS fbt - my wife Pat is an integral half of our imaging.....we're definitely a team and I really believe this gives some crucial advantages, especially as I've done my share of solo imaging practise!

Being very particular I guess I make the final call on everything (typical male I hear Pat & all women retort!!! ) but for feedback and some timely reminders about possible alternative opinions/points, as well as a fantastic background as a retired professional gun IT "fixer" it adds up to a lot of extra advantage.....and the company sure is nice!

I reckon this camera is a great choice Trevor, I "moved up" imo from the Flea3 so that is saying something as far as I'm concerned.....especially because I was involved with this camera from very early in its development.

Took 6 sets of rgb's this morning in "goodish" seeing again, each channel for 3 sets consisting of the obligatory 7000 frames @ 50fps.

The other 3 sets were iR-rgb sets of 5000 frames per channel where we split the 420 seconds total run into 4 channels each 105 seconds.....iR742nM's show interesting extra detail with "The Hex" standing out strongly in said: maybe some real possibilities for WinJupos stacking of multiple sets this time and am starting preliminary processing right now to finish off at home in front of the pc - but we'll stay and image tomorrow morning to see what it's like.....after that it might be a bit of a rest for a week or so!

Our battery banks have worked miracles these last few nights and are (along with dc-dc convertors for the laptop) indispensable!


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Fogboundturtle
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Reged: 05/20/09

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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5662812 - 02/05/13 01:23 AM

I didn't mean any disrespect to your wife. If I could only find a significant other that share my passion, I would be a happy man.

I hope one day I will get the chance to go down under and experience the majestic southern hemisphere. Until then I can view your threads on CN.


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Kokatha man
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Re: Saturn + ASI120MM Goodish Seeing=Lotsa Detail!!! new [Re: Fogboundturtle]
      #5662850 - 02/05/13 02:20 AM

None taken brother! Just thought I should give her the credit due to her for her input on the images - good insurance also..!

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GeorgeInDallas
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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5766803 - 03/30/13 12:38 PM

Hi,

I am enjoying reviewing your excellent Saturn images, in particular your most recent post. I notice that you have included a screen shot of your collimation image in the lower left hand corner of the image on the first post of this thread. Could you please explain how you made that collimation image. Do you have a web page or forum thread that discusses your collimation technique. I am aware of Therry Legault's page on collimation, but have been frustrated by my inability to produce anything that resembles his (computer generated) collimation images. Any help or explanations would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
George Hall
http://georgeastro.weebly.com/index.html


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Kokatha man
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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: GeorgeInDallas]
      #5767626 - 03/30/13 09:10 PM

Heck George, you could've just provided a link to this thread to illustrate your questions.....it's like a "blast from the past" and looking at the main images makes me want to go and repro them again..!!!

But at its' time it was very exciting to be sure.....collimation is no "mystery art" tbh but there's a coupe of things you must do..!

First off, NEVER collimate with any so-called collimating device - they're for visual obbing at best: you need to collimate onscreen using the imaging train you'll image with naturally.....anything else will include compromises!

Naturally the need to centre the star you're using in the centre of the FOV etc is critical, but once you take the star out-of-focus on a night of reasonable seeing you should see those nice patterns that Thierry Legault demonstrates.....unfortunately seeing defficiencies create scintillation that makes it more difficult to ascertain the true nature of their state, as do heat plumes from a scope that isn't cooled sufficiently.

Sometimes in these circumstances (as in the pik you refer to) I do an "on the fly" capture of the diffraction rings appearance to help gauge collimation adjustments etc.....ie, a short capture of a few hundred frames that I process then & there to get the image you saw.....that particular image demonstrated that I still had to tighten the secondary screw at the 3 o'clock position in my C14 because the rings are compressed on that side most specifically in that position: I was judging with an "extra-focus" set of Diffraction Rings, if I had used an "intra-focus" setting, meaning the star was moved out of focus by moving the focus inwards from the focus position, these rings would've needed that particular screw loosened...

Contrary to some information there is nothing wrong with loosening a secondary screw on an SCT if you remember not to keep on loosening one screw indiscriminantly - you need to make compensatory tightening of the others if you loosen one more than a half a turn or so imho...

Of course, there might not have actually been a screw located at 3 o'clock to tighten, in which case it would've possibly been a screw at 9 o'clock to loosen.....or to work with screws that might've been positioned at 2 & 5 o'clock etc, etc!

Another advantage of onscreen collimating is that it is much easier for a person to collimate because all you need to do is turn the laptop screen to face you as you twiddle the collimation!

The collimation that night was a disappointment but at that stage we looked over our shoulders and saw a huge cloudbank racing across the sky so we just went for it then and there.....and only got that one rgb set in before total cloud-out.....so in hindsight it was a very lucky grab and the results far exceeded expectations: but you can be sure the image would've been very considerably better had we the time to finish the collimation properly that time..!!!


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GeorgeInDallas
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Reged: 04/15/12

Loc: Dallas, Texas USA
Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: Kokatha man]
      #5767799 - 03/30/13 10:52 PM

Thanks for your prompt and detailed reply.

I do collimate my 12" LX200GPS using the imaging configuration and camera (2.5x PowerMate, Flea3). Like you suggest I monitor the laptop display as I adjust the collimation knobs. I usually must have the star out of focus by a considerable amount to make it large enough to see the image from the small three step ladder that I use to reach the collimation knobs. My scope is on wheeley bars and a large field tripod. Using this technique I am never quite certain that I have the out of focus star image centered quite properly. Is the collimation image that you posted the actual size that you utilize to collimate? Do you have examples showing a "good" collimation that you could post?

When you talk about an "on the fly" capture and processing of the collimation image, do you use Registax to do the processing? Will Registax align the collimation images correctly? How many collimation images do you stack? Do you do any type of post-stacking processing?

Thanks for your help,
George Hall


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Timthelder
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Reged: 06/12/12

Loc: Bowling Green KY
Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: GeorgeInDallas]
      #5767850 - 03/30/13 11:15 PM

Maybe I'm behind...(per usual) But I just thought I would say, "Nice image Daryl" via my latest S&T magazine issue.

Congrat's Mate!

Tim


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Kokatha man
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Re: Saturn+ASI120MM, Good Seeing&Lotsa Detail+Wjupos!! new [Re: GeorgeInDallas]
      #5767898 - 03/30/13 11:46 PM

Quote:

Thanks for your prompt and detailed reply.

I do collimate my 12" LX200GPS using the imaging configuration and camera (2.5x PowerMate, Flea3). Like you suggest I monitor the laptop display as I adjust the collimation knobs. I usually must have the star out of focus by a considerable amount to make it large enough to see the image from the small three step ladder that I use to reach the collimation knobs. My scope is on wheeley bars and a large field tripod. Using this technique I am never quite certain that I have the out of focus star image centered quite properly. Is the collimation image that you posted the actual size that you utilize to collimate? Do you have examples showing a "good" collimation that you could post?

When you talk about an "on the fly" capture and processing of the collimation image, do you use Registax to do the processing? Will Registax align the collimation images correctly? How many collimation images do you stack? Do you do any type of post-stacking processing?

Thanks for your help,
George Hall




Hi George & Tim! - Sean is sending me a copy or 2 as we don't get the US version of S&T where I live.....looking forward to seeing it.

George, "on the fly" means we do a quick capture and process in Registax5 (easiest) and "yes" it will align the Diffraction Rings (best to use "Centre of gravity" alignment mode.....minimal amount of wavelets applications (around 20 or so with #1 slider, that's all the post-processing necessary) and that image would be (possibly) half-scale

...maybe stacking 100 or 200 out of 500-1000 frames, it doesn't take many seconds to capture that many for us.....this "on the fly" testing shouldn't really be necessary for nights of good seeing where it is easy to judge good collimation - although it is an extra check.

No examples that I can lay my hands on atm but is is important to try and keep the enlarged (out of focus) image as small as you can work with although this isn't allways feasible, but do try and keep the image as centred as possible on the screen to ensure most effective and accurate gauging of optical alignment/collimation.


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