Monthly Archives: July 2017

Table Mountain Star Party – Trip Report

It has taken a few days to recover from the long drive back from Eden Valley (just east of Oroville, WA) and the Table Mountain Star Party.  I had never been to this event before, although it has been going on for longer than I’ve been into astronomy, and it used to be much closer.  So while I don’t yet have any astro-photos from there, I want to give you a quick report. To put it in as few words as possible:  Wonderful!  Aside from the long drive, that is.  Not so many years ago, this star party was held, […]

Sharpless 86 in Vulpecula

I did it again.  Here is another object from the Sharpless catalog, taken over the last few nights.  Capturing this has, unfortunately, kept me from processing the images I took at the last star party.  Not so much because I haven’t had time, but because I need to capture some calibration frames (what are called “flat frames”) before I can process them, and that means switching the camera from narrowband filters (what I use in my home observatory) to the RGB filters I used at the star party, then back again.  But I will get to them eventually. Sharpless 86 (Sh2-86) […]

A Sharp Picture of a Sharpless Object

A while ago, I posted a monochrome image (H-alpha channel) of M16 and another bright, but unknown (to me) hydrogen region.  The second object did not appear in my planetarium software and very few images I could find on the internet included it, so I asked people for help in identifying it.  I eventually came up with an answer myself:  It was Sh2-54, AKA Sharpless 54.  More importantly, this led me to the online catalog of Sharpless objects, Stewart Sharpless was an American astronomer who worked on a number of important projects and with some well known astronomers, including Edwin […]

Star Party in the Round

Recently, a friend has been making 360 degree by 180 degree panoramas of the night sky in various locations as part of a light pollution study.  As you can see, this is a pretty useful tool to document and demonstrate what light pollution looks like, but it also makes a pretty nice picture, so I asked him how to do it.  Mike was very helpful.  Not only did he show me how to do it, he loaned me his fancy tripod head to capture the frames, and did part of the processing that requires some software I don’t have (yet). […]