As I get back into astrophotography I am starting to conquer the little issues that make huge differences in the results.
I did get a nice session in last week, with several targets imaged. I am still struggling with processing LRGB color data and have some learning ahead of me. In the meantime the monochrome luminance images look pretty good.
I had hoped to get some more telescope time in tonight, the weather decided otherwise. May as well process photos while I listen to rain on the roof.
Sunday night I shot a wide-field image of the comet as it passed near the Pleiades star cluster. I am somewhat disappointed by the image. The skies over Waikoloa are just not conducive to wide-field imaging. And with a couple scheduled mountain days I did not have the option to take the gear up to where conditions are better. Not and get any sleep. Still, it is not a total disaster…
The Pleiades were not my primary target for the night, but that was setting and I was in no hurry to shut the gear down when there was a lot of dark remaining in the night. I glanced around the sky looking for a target appropriate for the field of view of the gear and just chanced to look at the star cluster.
Tonight a bright half Moon will be just under 4° from the Pleiades star cluster. The Moon will be 43% illuminated, bright, but the cluster is bright enough to be seen even against a bright Moon. As the Pleiades move to the west over coming months there will be a few more lunar conjunctions, with increasingly smaller crescents.
Yes, I have shot the Pleiades many times before. Still, a nice test of the new camera. I was limited to short exposures, 2 minutes in this case, as I was not setup for guiding. I took more frames instead, over thirty exposures of two minutes each for an hour total. After throwing a few out I still had enough to beat down the noise. I expect that with guiding and longer exposures the result would be better, but this wasn’t too bad…