I've been wondering about SQM, Bortle, and all that dark site stuff and thinking about whether it's worth it for me to image at a dark site.
The drive there is roughly 30 minutes and it's steep uphill (from 350m elevation to 1150m). My SQM readings from my garden are ~20,5 (So it's basically the low end of Bortle 4) and the dark site is ~21,3 (So it's Bortle 3).
With all the fuss of setting my stuff up in the dark (I usually can't go before it's dark) and having to leave a few hrs before sunrise because of sleep I wonder whether it's actually worth it to go there.
Let's take a look at the following scenario.
At home I can start imaging (sky brightness wise) at 9pm up until 5 am, that equals to roughly 8 hours of integration time.
At a dark site, I could start imaging at around 10pm until 3 am, that equals 5 hours.
So my question is, will these three lost hours of data surpass the increased SNR from a dark site? Do you know any articles/posts that can help me understand the actual science behind sky darkness? I am intrigued by it...But I've been struggling to find a proper formula to calculate the SNR improvement your sky darkness gives you, so help me out on that please!
Thanks in advance!
Edited by Huangdi, 31 March 2020 - 02:19 PM.