Monday, January 21, 2019

Jan 20, 2019. Total Lunar Eclipse Sequence

Photos taken with Nikon D500,  Tamron 160-600mm lens @ 600mm, Tracking with a Starguider pro.

Friday, December 28, 2018

December 28, 2018: Single Photo Astrophotos

Problem solving Astrophotos:  I took a series of images in order to stack and see the detail of the nebulocity.  Turns out, there is more detail in a single frame than the stack (using Deek Sky Stacker).  So I'm trying to figure out why stacking loses detail (I suspect its because of small errors in alignment)

M42 (Orion Nebula).   Single image, 2 min exposure, 200mm f/2.8, ISO 800

NGC2024 (Flame Nebula) and IC434 (Horsehead Nebula)

Original Image with NCG2024 (lower left) and M42 (upper right)

 M42 (annotated by

IC 434 (annotated by

Monday, December 17, 2018

December 18, 2018: Comets, Nebulae and a Galaxy

A progress report on my astrophotography adventure.   

I'm slowly overcoming obstacles.  Among them are mechanical stability, vibration control (iOptron Sky Guider Pro),  (delay shutter opening by 2 sec), equatorial mount polar alignment (in order to take longer exposures).

Here are results over the past month:
46P with the Pleiades in the upper left.   90mm Tamron 2.8 lens

46P Annotation from
46P   200 mm f2.8 lens
M31 - Andromeda Galaxy
M42, Orion Nebula

M42 annotation from

NGC 2024  (Flame Nebula) and Barnard 33 (Horsehead Nebula)  The bright star is Alnitak

Track of a geostationary satellite passing Alnilam

Artifact: Aircraft approaching Orion

Maybe artifact:  a strange object in a wide angle photo of the east

Cropped image of the strange object

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

November 13, 2018: More progress with astrophotography

Slowly, I'm overcoming problems - initially huge problems: vibration, tracking, noise and polar alignment.  For post processing, I'm using Deep Sky Stacker and then Lightroom 6 for post-post processing. Below are results from last night. Still room for improvement.

Orion Nebula, M42. 25 images stacked

Flame nebula (NGC2024) and the Horsehead Nebula (IC 434) - 46 images stacked (30 sec exposures)
Annotated image from
Full analysis with annotation at

Friday, November 2, 2018

October 31, 2018. Orion Nebula and flame nebula

More practice with astrophotography using DSLR camera telephoto lens.  I've encountered a new challenge - how to identify what I "think" I've photographed.  I've found a web site Astrometry: Images analysis and annotation. In addition, I've found that Amazon is offering an image and feature recognition site:  Amazon Image Recognition API.  This world of image analysis is a new world for me to explore.  

Flame Nebula (NGC 2024) above Alnitak (left most star in Orion's Belt)

Here is the analysis of this image submitted to

Placing my image in context

Analysis by Amazon's Rekognition

Orion Nebula 

Image and analysis of an unknown submitted to

Friday, October 26, 2018

October 22, 2018: Improving Signal / Noise ratio for astrophotography.

Learning about stacking images in order to reduce the noise and bring out faint features.  Here is M42: First is the stacked image (120 images) and below is one of the cropped original images.  I'm using a MatLab contributed tool called MastroStack 

Original unstacked image