Deep Sky Photos I took

click on images for full size....

Click for full size I shot this while looking to catch some Quadrantid meteors on 1/4/00. Didn't catch any, but isn't this a lovely shot of Leo and the open cluster Melotte 111 in Coma Berenices?

Canon FTb body with a 50mm lens at f/2.8 for 10 minutes on Kodak Gold 400 ISO film piggybacked on the C8 at Stone Haven Observatory.

Click for full size Here's the same shot with a rough trace of the constellations. very rough trace.
Click for full size At first, I didn't like this one. I tried another bunch of deep space pictures recently, trying to get a handle on exposure times, only to find out my pier has somehow come out of alignment. Also, I still can't focus worth a darn. But when you look at it, it does actually show up as a brilliant edge on spiral galaxy. You can actually detect the large dust lanes around the center, too. I guess I'll keep it until I get a better one.

Canon FTb camera body taken at the Cassegrain focus of a C8 for 1/2 hour on Kodak Gold 400 ISO print film.

Click for full size Ok, it's kinda faint, but it's there. I think it looks better here than live, but what the heck. M74 is one of the lower surface brightness objects in the catalog.

Same exposure as Ngc 253 above.

Click for full size This is a picture of Orion-with a -7 magnitude Iridium flare going right between his legs! Makes Rigel look dim, doesn't it?
Here's a shot of the globular cluster M13 in Hercules I shot at the 1998 Grand Canyon Star Party on the last night we were there. There was no manual guiding at all, which just shows you how well drift alignment works, if you're patient. :-)
Click for full sizeHere's a shot of the Taurus region of sky. This shot was taken piggybacked on the C8 with a 35mm lens on Kodak Gold 800 film for 10 minutes. You may recognize it in gif form as the background on some of the other pages here. You can clearly see the Pleiades and Hyades clusters along with Aldeberan. I like the colors of the different types of stars in this photo, too. It's something you can miss with the naked eye sometimes.
 for full size This was the only successful shot of 10 exposures attempting to capture Leonid meteors on film. If you know the sky even a little, you can see how th meteors trace back to the "head" region of the lion. It really illustrates the "radiant" concept well. That being the illusion of the meteors all radiating from one point in space, much like driving through a snow storm, where all the flakes appear to come from directly in front of you.
Click for full size Ok, this one's not so great, but it _is_ the first deep sky object I attempted at prime focus from the permanent pier in Stone Haven. I figured it'd be a good target for starters. Big, bright, beautiful, hard to screw up. I think this was an 8 minute exposure on 800 speed film, but I'm not sure. It's only guidance was with the standard C8 drive, hence the periodic error is plain. I really like the colors though, and it _is_ one of the most recognizable objects in the sky.


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Copyright 1999, Steve Dodder
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Revised: 8/25/99