Jupiter rising…

Things never go quiet as planned. It was my hope to have either a one shoot color planetary camera or some nice filters and filter wheel by now. The plan was to have it all in time for Jupiter’s current apparition. But with things running behind schedule and no good filters or color planetary camera, I have been relegated to improvise. My guide camera, an ASAI120 mono is no slouch, but without the proper filters, it is slightly crippled for color. None the less, in dramatic fashion, I was able to use some “el cheapo” Celestron color filters and manually swap them out in an attempt to capture some images of the “King of Planets”. Bader RGB filters…these are not. So below is a nice salmon colored image of the gas giant. Oh well, yeah, the colors are off, but in due time and with the addition of better equipment, that problem should remedy itself. There is still time to prepare for the upcoming appearances of Saturn and Mars!

Some down time after the Rosette Nebula.

Imaging is progressing pretty well and the processing aspect of it seems to be improving steadily. However the latest image below of the Rosette nebula has brought to my attention a couple of issues with the recently added ES 80mm triplet refractor. Foremost is the inability to get a good flat field (sharp stars in the edges). It is likely some alignment issue within the scope. So I have sent it back to the factory for servicing. I had hoped to get more exposures to build upon for the Rosette image , but it looks it will have to wait until repairs are made and for when another opportunity arises. Even flawed and with minimum frames to work with, it looks promising. I’ll also take this time to finish up some odds and ends in the observatory itself and reprocess some older images, which I have already begun. Hopefully things will be back up and running within another week or two.