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SAC8-II First Night, January 1, 2005

ALLEGRO GRADIENT EDITOR A Program to use colourful themes with Allegro
SPACE FX Planetary Animation Frame generator
SPACE FX TUTORIAL A Brief tutorial covering basic parts of SPACE FX
ASTEROID (Windows) Asteroid Finder - Windows (98...XP)  version
ASTEROID (Linux) Asteroid Finder - Linux (Fedora) version
TELESCOPE and MOUNTING My 12.5 inch F5 Newtonian with a Split-Ring Mounting
TELEScoPIC - Digital Setting Circles Digital DSC using a PIC 16F628  microcontroller
SAC8 CCD CAMERA My Pictures taken with a Telephoto lens and the SAC8-II CCD Camera
SAC8 CCD CAMERA -Page 2 My Pictures taken with the new Telescope Mounting
THE ORIGIN OF LIFE Musing on the Origin of Life, the Universe and Everything...

This page is a summary of my astro photos with my SAC8 Mark II CCD camera.

First, I found out two things:

1. The SAC CCD is super sensitive!

2. My telescope mount has a stability like jelly.

SAC8-II with a 10" f6 Newtonian

Here are two frames of M42 taken with my 10" f6 newtonian at prime focus.
These are the only ones with reasonable star images. The others had pretzel shaped stars due to mount wobbles.
First at low gain. One second exposure. Star distortion is mainly from wind gusts.
 Notice that the small size of the camera ccd and long focal length 1500mm means
 that only the core of the nebula around the trapezium was captured.
M42-1sec.jpg

Next at high gain. Same one second exposure.
M42-1sHi
Man, is this a sensitive camera or what!
As a result of this test, I am now in the process of redesigning the mounting for more stability.

SAC8 with a 135mm f2.8 Tamron SLR lens

Next I tried connecting a 135mm f2.8 Tamron telephoto lens to the SAC8 CCD camera.
This gives a Field of View that is two degrees wide.
 I had to use a 27mm extension tube to reach focus.

Since I have yet to master (or use) dark frames and flat frames, the pictures are just as they come off the camera.
At least it has Peltier cooling which minimises hot pixels. The hot pixels can be seen in the photos below as a line of 3 or 4 dots.

First I tried m42 with the telephoto lens. This is a stack of 4 frames, 10 seconds each at low gain.
m42-1.jpg

Here I tried the Flame nebula and the horsehead nebula.
This is a stack of 4 frames and 10 second exposures at medium gain. The horsehead nebula is barely visible just below centre.
I am really amazed at actually seeing the horsehead with only 4 x 10 second exposures in a 135mm lens. (no telescope!)
hh1.jpg

Next picture:
The Crab Nebula with the SAC8 and 135mm telephoto lens. 3 frames at 10 seconds and 70% gain

crab1.jpg

Next comet Macholz near Taurus. 3 frames at 10 seconds Medium gain.
I edited out the hot pixels in Paint Shop
comet.jpg

Next the Eta Carina Nebula. 3 frames at 10 seconds Low gain.

eta1.jpg
I tried this nebula at high gain and got a white-out in 10 second exposures...

Next the globular cluster ngc104 (47 Tucana) 4 frames at 10 seconds 70% gain.

ngc104.jpg
(More pictures to come)
My New Telescope and Split-ring Mount
Asteroid
SpaceFX
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