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Goofi's Imaging Challenge, February 2020 - (IC 342) The Hidden Galaxy

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#1 nmoushon

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Posted 02 February 2020 - 08:48 PM

The February 2020 Challenge is now open. The target is (IC 342) The Hidden Galaxy. To reduce the number of stickies, please submit your entry to this thread.

 

For those having troubles locating the target here is a post that will help locate near by objects.

 

The Rules will remain pretty simple:

 

      Your Equipment

      Your Data, Captured This Season

      Your Processing

      One Entry Per Member

      Only post your FINAL image

 

To increase participation over such a diverse group, the winner will be selected by random drawing. Please feel free to start a thread requesting guidance on your entry prior to submitting it, the whole purpose of this challenge is to learn and compare on a common target. Entries must be submitted by midnight eastern time on February 29, and I will try to announce the winner early in March.

 

Note: If I am late announcing, gently nudge one of the moderators in a private note, it helps. Seriously, PM one of us!

 

Please display an image in your post, not just a link!!

 

I hope everyone has fun with this one, and with that,

Let The Games Begin

 

**Disclaimer** - If the selected winner does not reply and pick a target with-in 3 days of the winner being announced, the Mods will then select the next target.

 


 

#2 leeasle

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Posted 04 February 2020 - 11:57 AM

One of the few targets I've actually gotten this winter!

 

Equipment: Explore Scientific Essentials 127mm refractor, ZWO 1600 mono camera with ZWO filter wheel and LRGB filters, mount HDX-110.

 

Image capture Program: Voyager. Integration time 42x300 Red, 33x300 Green, Blue 33x300,  Lum 160x300

 

Image processing using Pixinsight. My average workflow, register/stack, DBE, combine color channels, PCC, and stretch. Lum, DBE, stretch, HDR Multi-scale Transform, combine Lum with RGB, minor adjustment with color curves, and MT. 

 

Spent a lot of time on it over last 2 months or so, knew it was a difficult target. Rescaled and compressed for this post, better picture on Astrobin of course.

 

Thanks,

Lynn

 

Attached Thumbnails

  • IC342_Es127_Zwo1600_LRGB_012820_Resized.jpg

 

#3 astronomos

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Posted 05 February 2020 - 04:26 AM

very nice capture


 

#4 Gipht

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Posted 13 February 2020 - 02:17 AM

This picture was taken on 2/12/20 with the ASI183mm-pro, using an 8" f/4 reflector as the telescope, and a guided CEM-60 mount.    30 second subs at 160 gain and -15C, at binx2  R(96),G(78),B(50) for about 2 hours of integration.  Stacked in DSS, and developed  in Star Tools and Gimp.  The binx2 was selected to reduce  the exposure time and hopefully get  smaller stars.  In the past, this combination of telescope and camera had resulted in some bloated  stars at binx1.  This was  likely caused  by seeing and guiding that were not up to the image scale.  The star  size was reduced about 30% from recent results by using binx2.  Under ideal conditions, binx1 would produce much better resolution.

Attached Thumbnails

  • hidden2020.JPG

 

#5 AKHalea

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Posted 15 February 2020 - 12:03 PM

I finally had a chance to capture the "Hidden Galaxy" in Camelopardalis constellation a few days ago. This bright and relatively large galaxy lies in the same direction as the plane of our Milky Way. As a result, despite its intrinsic brightness, it is very faint and hard to capture for us on earth. It is in the local group of galaxies with an estimated distance from us of ~7 to 11 million light years. When I took an image of it on Feb 13, 2020 with over 200 minutes of imaging time, it was still quite faint and hard to pull out of the background. So, I had to stretch the image a lot to get the result presented below : 

 

2-13 HiddenGalaxy 202Min LPR STCrIsoJ2 CN.jpg

 

Capture details: 

Date of capture : February 13, 2020,

Cptured from my suburban Houston, Tx backyard (Bortle zone borderline 7/8),

Sky conditions - seeing was OK (maybe 5 out of 10), with occasional wind gusts upto 10mph, 

Clouds rolled in after ~ 3.2 hours of imaging and had to stop. 

OTA : Stellarvue Access 80mm/f7 scope fitted with an SV Field Flattener,

Filters - 2" LP filter (Orion Skyglow imaging filter), 

Mount : iOptron iEQ 30Pro,

Imaging camera : H-Alpha modded Nikon D5300,

Image capture using an external intervalometer,

ISO 200, f7, 202 minutes of total integration time (67x3Min, unguided),

Calibration done using flats, darks and bias frames then registration and integration in APP (Astro Pixel Processor), 

Post processing in StarTools - minimally cropped and then binned 2x2 to get better SNR,

Final touch-ups and size reduction to fit CN criteria done in FastStone Image viewer. 

 

I hope you like my attempt at this faint target ...... Anil


Edited by AKHalea, 16 February 2020 - 08:19 AM.

 

#6 johnsoda

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Posted 15 February 2020 - 02:53 PM

Click on small image for better quality image and acquisition details.

 

get.jpg?insecure

 

IC342.jpg


 

#7 rkelley61

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Posted 15 February 2020 - 11:57 PM

Telescope: TPO RC8 with Moonlite focuser and controller
Camera: ASI071MC Pro (.9"/pixel, bin1x1)
Focal Reducer: Astro-Physics .67
Mount: Losmandy G11T
Software: N.I.N.A., PHD2, PixInsight
Dates: February 2nd and 14th, 2020
Frames: 316x60" (gain:90 temp: -10)
Integration: 5.25 hours

 

IC342.jpg


 

#8 sunnyday

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Posted 16 February 2020 - 12:00 AM

all very beautiful pics.


 

#9 Dereksc

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Posted 16 February 2020 - 01:03 PM

Probably a target I would have overlooked had it not been for the imaging challenge, thanks for choosing it. 

I am still imaging with my GT71 so this is relatively wide field although it has been cropped. I found this a challenging subject, quite dim, made more difficult by strong moonlight during the initial imaging nights and thus requiring lots of data. 

 

Here is Astrobin link:

get.jpg?insecure

 

For those not wishing to click on the link:

 

ic346.jpg

 

Dates:Feb. 6, 2020,  Feb. 11, 2020,  Feb. 13, 2020,  Feb. 14, 2020
Frames:
ZWO B 1.25": 120x100" (gain: 76.00) -15C bin 1x1
ZWO G 1.25": 79x100" (gain: 76.00) -15C bin 1x1
ZWO L 1.25": 345x30" (gain: 76.00) -15C bin 1x1
ZWO R 1.25": 79x100" (gain: 76.00) -15C bin 1x1
Integration: 10.6 hours
Darks: ~20
Flats: ~20
Flat darks: ~20
Avg. Moon age: 17.27 days
Avg. Moon phase: 81.32%
Bortle Dark-Sky Scale: 6.00
Pixel scale: 2.323 arcsec/pixel
Orientation: 92.833 degrees

 

Processing steps using Pixinsight:

crop, DBE, combine RGB, masked stretch RGB and L, combine LRGB, TGVDenoise using L*a*b* mode on non-linear image.

 

Regards

 

Derek


 

#10 GoBlue

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Posted 17 February 2020 - 12:04 PM

Another challenging challenge... oh my.

What's next month, M87? (joking, don't even think about it).

Quickie last night 2/16 under the first clear sky in what seems like months.

 

ES ed80 f/6 480mm fl.

Full spec modded t3i w/ idas lps d1 480mm.

Orion starshoot & 50mm guide scope.

AVX.

 

27 x 180 lights.

ISO 800

Camera sensor temp +6c.

No darks / flats / bias.

BYEOS, PHD2, DSS and PS with AstronomyTools add on.

 

Peace.

 

 

Attached Thumbnails

  • ic 342.jpg

 

#11 RudiVM

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Posted 20 February 2020 - 12:39 AM

Again,  not enough clear nights, weather forecast does not look very promising too bawling.gif  …..so very little data , resulted in a lot off  noise, difficult to reduce, but a good learning experience,so I learned a few new things  yay.gif …
Need to revisit this target for sure…

 

And ‘first light’ for my new SW Esprit 100ED….

 

Lum  300 x 30 sec
RGB 3 x 60 x 30 sec
SW Esprit 100 ED
NEQ6-Pro
Zwo Asi 1600 mm pro + EFW+ Zwo HaLRGB filters
Zwo EAF
Guiding PHD2
Image capturing: SGP

Processing: PI & CS6
Taken from my Bortle 6 backyard.

Attached Thumbnails

  • Im26_IC342_HiddenGalaxy.jpg

Edited by RudiVM, 20 February 2020 - 12:39 AM.

 

#12 Wintermute

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Posted 21 February 2020 - 02:40 AM

A mere 10 million light years distant, the Hidden Galaxy (IC 342) would be a prominent galaxy in our night sky if not for the veil of stars, gas, and dust clouds along the plane of our own Milky Way. 

61YH7axl.jpg

Full size and details: https://telescopius....ures/view/53381

216 x 60" RASA 8", asi183mc-pro, Celestron LP Filter
54 x 300" Skywatcher Evostar 150mm APO, asi071mc-pro,2" Baader Moon & Skyglow Filter
asi290mc-pro in a Skywatcher Evoguide 50 guiding a Skywatcher EQ8-R Pro. 

Captured in NINA, processed in PixInsight.

Process: AutomatedBackgroundExtraction, HistogramTransformation, SCNR, L-Mask, UnSharkMask, LocalHistogramEqualization, CurvesTransformation for lightness and saturation, combined via Pixelmath. 
 


Edited by Wintermute, 21 February 2020 - 07:55 PM.

 

#13 JacobB5

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Posted 23 February 2020 - 01:04 PM

To say this was a difficult target is an understatement. Just getting it in frame was challenging.

(Honestly I was just glad to get anything on frame)
 
So
EQ6-R
Orion 8" f/4
Canon T3i (stock)
Light:
20 * 180
20 * 300
Dark:16
Flat: 20
Bias: 26
Optron L-Enhance
 
Curves, Levels, Crop in Gimp.

Attached Thumbnails

  • IC_342b.jpg

Edited by JacobB5, 23 February 2020 - 01:06 PM.

 

#14 Gene3

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Posted 23 February 2020 - 06:46 PM

Despite a relentless parade of operator errors, I actually got enough data to put together an image of this target.

 

Used my SVX152T on MX+ with 16200a guided. (image scale was 1.01 arc sec/pixel) to get 370 minutes of data over February 11th, 19th, & 20th.

L=13 x 600sec, RGB = 6 x 600sec for each, & Ha 4 x 900 sec

30 each, darks, bias, & R,G,B, Ha flats

Processed in PI (special thanks to Ron Brecher for his expertise & guidance in processing)

The Ha was only used heighten the red knots in the spiral arms. Went with color calibration, not photometric color calibration to minimize the red dust around the galaxy.

 

Attached Thumbnails

  • IC342 FINAL v5.jpg

 

#15 TelescopeGreg

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Posted 26 February 2020 - 01:25 AM

So, not one of my better images, but the target is definitely there...

 

This is the result of 2 nights' work, both with so-so seeing and transparency and Bortle 6 skies.  The first night netted about 100 subs, 20 seconds each, ending when the Moon rose to make a mess of things.  The second night, 2 weeks later, added another 200 subs.  Total integration time was 1hr 40 min.  We have clouds forecast for the end of the week, with a night of bad transparency before that.  Ideally I need to at least double or triple the integration time, and that's not happening.  So, I'm calling it here.  Hope for better weather next month.

 

I am finding that the new scope is much more sensitive to temperature changing focus, or perhaps the focuser is slipping.  Something is moving.  The old Newtonian had its own quirks and problems, but this wasn't one.  You can see the change in focus from first sub to the last during even one hour of imaging, and it is clearly visible in the resulting stack.  This will add another challenge to the imaging plan, either in process or equipment, or both.

 

One other operational note, for those who have their scopes on carts.  Ground your cart!  It's not so much for safety, though that's never a bad idea.  It's for ESD (Electrostatic Discharge).  About halfway into the second imaging night, I got up from my chair to trigger the Intervalometer for the next set of subs.  Touched the mount, and felt a small shock.  Little spark.  No big deal.  Started the imager running, and sat down.  Then I noticed that the PHD2 graph had stopped.  Apparently the zap had caused the guide camera to lock up.  After fussing with it for a few minutes, I eventually had to reboot the computer (a Raspberry Pi, so not a huge deal).  Lost about a dozen or two subs in the process.  Now adding a step to touch the physical ground before touching the scope...

 

Telescope:  Stellarvue SVA130EDT (130mm f/7), Feathertouch focuser

Imaging camera:  Nikon D3200, ISO 12,800, external Intervalometer

Mount:  Celestron AVX

Guiding:  ZWO 60mm f/4.6 guide scope, ASI174mm Mini camera

Computing:  4GB Raspberry Pi-4B; CCDciel, ASTAP, PHD2 software

Stacked with Sequator, processed with StarTools

Integration:  302 x 20 seconds Lights, 20 darks, no flats

 

Enjoy!

 

Greg

 

IC342 302 subs 20 sec 2 nights.jpeg


Edited by TelescopeGreg, 26 February 2020 - 01:32 AM.

 

#16 Cfreerksen

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Posted 26 February 2020 - 11:13 PM

The Hidden Galaxy revealed!

 

9.27 Hours over 4 nights. 2-4,13,14,19.

 

R 50x240

G 45x240

B 44x240

 

EdgeHD8

ASI1600MM Pro

Astronomik Deep-Sky RGB

Celestron CGX

PixInsight

 

Astrobin link https://www.astrobin...v1ufi9/?nc=user

 

Enjoy,

 

Chris

 

 

Attached Thumbnails

  • Hidden Galaxy.jpg

 

#17 nmoushon

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Posted 01 March 2020 - 10:23 PM

This months winner is Cfreerksen! Post #16. 

You really did a great job on this one. The extra FL added some really nice resolution. The dust lanes are nicely visible. 


 

#18 Gene3

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Posted 01 March 2020 - 10:44 PM

The Hidden Galaxy revealed!

 

9.27 Hours over 4 nights. 2-4,13,14,19.

 

R 50x240

G 45x240

B 44x240

 

EdgeHD8

ASI1600MM Pro

Astronomik Deep-Sky RGB

Celestron CGX

PixInsight

 

Astrobin link https://www.astrobin...v1ufi9/?nc=user

 

Enjoy,

 

Chris

Hey Chris

Great work on IC 342 you pulled some great detail!

Looking forward to your selection for March.

Cheers,

Gene


 

#19 Cfreerksen

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Posted 01 March 2020 - 11:30 PM

This months winner is Cfreerksen! Post #16. 

You really did a great job on this one. The extra FL added some really nice resolution. The dust lanes are nicely visible. 

Well thank you very much. It was a difficult target with the many cloudy nights.

 

My selection for March is IC 410, Tadpole Nebula. A great wide view target and very interesting up close. This target should be in reach for nearly everyone. 

 

Thanks again,

 

Chris


 


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