Sunday, July 20, 2014

Camera tracking tests

On July 19th I set up the new equatorial mount right ascension axis for the first time. The goal was to test the tracking with a camera and 100mm lens. The photo's were taken in our backyard which is a 5minute drive from downtown tucson. As you would expect, the light pollution washes out the milky way, but fortunately I was able to prove the new mount is working extremely well. Polar alignment was roughly accomplished with a polar scope.

At first I was getting some very strange results. It turned out I didn't have the camera locked down on the swivel mount, whoops!

2 minute exposure, M8 the Lagoon nebula and M20 the Trifid Nebula are in the upper right. You can also see a Globular cluster in the far left of the field. Unfortunately this camera lens suffers from a great deal of Coma, which you can see in the comet shaped stars at the edges of the field.

Another photo of M8 and M20 more centered, this frame has been cropped.

5 Minute exposure of M17 the swan nebula and M16 the Eagle Nebula. You can see how washed out the image is due to the light pollution of downtown tucson. Note the pin point stars at the center of the frame, demonstrating the tracking is working great.

This is why you need a tracking mount. This is a 5minute exposure of Antares with the tracking turned off. Compare to the above images where there is no trailing in the images, even with a very rough polar alignment.

No comments:

Post a Comment