Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Crescent Moon (Day 3), Earthshine, M13 revisited, and more!

This is the third day in a row that the weather has permitted a warm summer evening to scan the heavens!
Here is "day 3" of my effort to photograph the moon every night!

When the moon is in crescent shape and you expose for a longer time you can see what is called "Earthshine" on the moon's shaded surface! You can make out the various "seas" (darker portions) of the moon.

Here is a shot of my observatory with the moon in the background (see the Earthshine?)

I revisited the Great Globular Star Cluster in Hercules last night, taking 17 - 8 second photos and stacking them together to create this image. Can you make out the different colored stars (yellow, blues)? The overall color is slightly greenish due to the insufficient number of images to be stacked. I will go for more in the future!

It was during this effort that I noticed flashes in the southern approaching dry lightning storm coming up from California. Never heard the thunder but WOW, was there a lot of lightning strikes somewhere! I stacked my "wide field" views into a single short video below. Sadly the lightning flashes didn't show up, but you can see the apparent rotation of the stars in the sky as the clouds approached!

So I decided to pull the plug on my observing session about 11:45 pm. It was good to see the Lord's handiwork again!

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