Got today’s Earth Science Picture of the Day (EPOD) with “Fibonacci Spirals in the Garden” :)

Thank you Jim at EPOD http://epod.usra.edu/ for continuing to publish my work.

 

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Not had the opportunity to image this one yet (non-stop rain) but here is an asterism the bears a strong resemblance to the Greek letter Lambda.

Will grab this one with the mini-WASP array at the first opportunity – until then it’ll be this DSS2 data :)

 

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Arrived today :)  This is clearly a labour of love.  Beautifully presented, oozing quality, and very fine attention paid to the detail throughout.  I had the honour of going through Brian’s Ph.D. thesis on “A Survey of Radial Velocities in the Zodiacal Dust Cloud” some years ago.  This thesis differed very significantly from every other thesis that I had gone through during my 23 years at Southampton University.  How did it differ?  There was not a single spelling mistake, not a single typo error, no grammatical errors, no errors with the presentation of any of the diagrams, and of course no errors of fact.  With 23 years in higher education – I had not seen such a perfect piece of work produced in a Ph.D. thesis before.  What has this got to do with “Diableries”?  You get the same presentation in Diableries as you got in the thesis.  Word perfect, perfect layout, extreme attention to image quality and detail – Brian is clearly a perfectionist – and Diableries is an example of stereoscopic perfection available for you to appreciate in front of a roaring log fire this winter.  Superb job Brian :) :)

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Yesterday’s Earth Science Picture of the Day (EPOD) was my process of the DSS2 data of the Pleiades region.

This was EPOD number 54 for me :)

Thank you Jim at EPOD for continuing to publish my work.

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Things certainly hotted up last night at the New Forest Observatory – not seen a display like this in over 10 years.

Needless to say, the photo was taken from indoors as it was just too scary to stand outside.

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For the very first time, the New Forest Observatory is offering a portfolio of its finest deep-sky prints for you to purchase.

Full details can be found here.

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The Canon 200mm f#2.8 prime lens gives remarkable performance for astroimages across the whole diagonal of a full frame sensor.  I am using the lens with a Canon 5D MkII (unmodified) which means that I can capture star fields quite well, but not the faint red emission nebulosity – and I have a massive field of view of 10 x 6.8 degrees to play with (where the diameter of a full Moon is just half a degree).

I also have a huge portfolio of faint deep-sky objects captured using the Hyperstar III – so I am now in the happy position of being able to grab huge star fields in one go using the DSLR and then filling in any faint objects using Hyperstar III data – a process called compositing.

The image below is a 10 x 6.8 degree deep-sky image centred on the Cocoon nebula in Cygnus.  Towards upper right we have open cluster M39, towards lower left is open cluster NGC 7209, and towards upper right is a large open cluster NGC 7243.  Trailing behind the Cocoon nebula we have the highly impressive dark nebulosity Barnard 168, one of the most high-impact naked-eye nebulosities in the northern hemisphere.

The combination of the 200mm/Canon 5D MkII and Hyperstar III data is going to feature highly in forthcoming deep-sky images from the New Forest Observatory.

 

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This month’s image is a wide-field taken using the amazing Canon EF200 f#2.8 prime lens and a Canon 5D MkII DSLR.  Piggy-back mounted on the C11 I took 10 x 5-minute subs at ISO 400 and f#4 with an IDAS filter attached to the EF200.  As expected the Heart and Soul nebulae didn’t come out too well with the un-modified 5D MkII, but I am very pleased indeed with the nice round stars from corner to corner over a 10 x 6.8 degree field of view – something well beyond the capabilities of my refractors.  Looks like I will be using this rig for star fields and reasonably high resolution constellation shots.

 

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Got today’s Earth Science Picture of the Day – EPOD – http://epod.usra.edu/blog/2013/09/navigators-companion.html -with an image of Polaris.

Thank you Jim at EPOD for continuing to publish my work.  That is EPOD number 53 for me :)

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This month’s Image of the Month is a stacked-focus photomicromosaic of a Dragonfly’s eye.  Even at a low magnification of only x20 the Dragonfly’s eye is still far too big to fit into a single frame using the Canon 5D MkII.  This means a mosaic has to be constructed from several individual frames.  In addition, in order to keep the whole of the eye in focus each frame must also be a focus-stacked series of images.  This means that taking a focus-stacked photomicromosaic as seen in this image is a painstaking business – but somebody’s got to do it :)

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