Friday, April 18, 2008

Moon through the Scope

Last night was another decent night for astronomy and this time I decided to haul the scope into the yard. My main goal was to see how the moon would turn out through the camera. The moon was a little late coming into the backyard so in the mean time I took a quick shot of Saturn (pictured below). Even at 2000mm, Saturn is still tiny, next time I'll use a barlow and webcam :)

The picture above is a little deceptive. Its actually the end product of several hours of processing in Registax. Even with stacked tele-converters the Canon 600mm lens has more resolution than the RCX400 (which I guess isn't that surprising). The scope though did exhibit much less CA. To make the image above, I cropped a region of the larger image (prime focus I could fit about 1/2 the moon on the XSi sensor). I took 11 shots and used 10 in Registax. I then brought it back into Photoshop and did some more work with sharpening and noise reduction.

I'm not sure if the results with the telescope warrant all the extra work, though it was a lot easier getting it pointed at the moon. Maybe I need to get out to a really dark location (with altitude) and give this a try.

Technical Specs: Canon Rebel XSi, Meade 10" RCX 400, f/8, ISO 400 top: 1/250s, left: 1/20s.
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