Monthly Archives: March 2013

Cosmic Tadpoles – IC410

Ha image of emission nebula IC410 acquired using my system at AstroCamp, Nerpio, Spain. Comparing this with the image of IC410 (below) taken using my ST-10/Megrez 120 system in Bristol shows the benefit of the dark skies at AstroCamp enabling an equivalent image in terms of signal-to-noise ratio to be acquired in less than a third of the total exposure time. The higher resolution of the STL-6303E/CDK 12.5 system at AstroCamp can be seen although it is not as significant as might be expected. This is probably explained by a combination of poor seeing at AstroCamp over the three nights of acquisition and the high precision guiding by the Starlight Xpress Active Optics unit attached to the system in Bristol.

Right ascension: 05h 22m 44.17s | Declination: +33° 24′ 45.2″ | Distance: 12,000 Light Years
Field of view: 37.4 x 24.9 arcmin

Camera: SBIG STL-6303E
Telescope: PlaneWave Instruments CDK 12.5 F/7.9
Guiding: External 80mm F/4 guidescope with an Atik 314L+ for guiding
Mount: Paramount PME
Filters: Astrodon Ha (5nm)
Exposures: Ha 10 x 10 min
Total exposure: 1 hour 40 minutes
Image composition: Monochrome Ha
Scale: 0.73 arcsec/pixel
Image acquired: 7&8/01/2013; 29/01/2013

Image capture with MaxIm DL, FocusMax, ACP; Image processed with MaxIm DL, Photoshop CS4, Focus Magic, Silver Efex Pro 2

The Tadpole Nebula in Ha – IC410

Emission nebula IC 410 in the constellation of Auriga imaged in the red visible part of the electromagnetic spectrum at the hydrogen-alpha spectral line (656nm). The image shows a cloud of glowing gas over 100 light years across sculpted by stellar winds and radiation from the embedded open star cluster. The cluster can be seen just below the prominent dark dust cloud near image centre. The popular name for the nebula derives from the two tadpole shaped features with their tails made up of relatively dense material steaming away from the nebula’s central region. This is the first image acquired from Bristol observatory with Astrodon 3nm narrowband filters. Sub exposure time was increased to 20 minutes although this is still below the optimal sky limited exposure time for this site.

Right ascension: 05h 22m 44s | Declination: +33° 24′ 45″ | Distance: 12,000 Light Years
Field of view: 57 x 38 arcmin

Camera: SBIG ST-10XME
Telescope: William Optics Megrez 120 F/7.5
Guiding: Starlight Xpress Active Optics (SXV-AO-LF) unit
Filters: Astrodon Ha (3nm)
Exposures: Ha 18 x 20 min
Total exposure: 6 hours
Image composition: Monochrome Ha
Scale: 1.56 arcsec/pixel
Image acquired: 06/02/2013; 02/03/2013; 13/03/2013

Image capture with MaxIm DL, FocusMax, ACP; Image processed with MaxIm DL; Photoshop CS4; Focus Magic, Silver Efex Pro 2