Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Whirlpool Galaxy, Circumpolar stars, Crescent Moon, and More!

Two nights in a row of clear skies! Woohoo!

Got outside just in time to capture the second crescent moon in a row:

I also took another shot of the southern skies in the Milky Way...lots of interesting objects here!

If you step outside tonight after it gets a little dark and look to the south-south west you will see a triangle of bright objects: one a star (Arcturus) at the top, Saturn to the lower left, and Mars at the lower right (next to Spica in the constellation Virgo):

I purposed to photograph the Whirlpool Galaxy tonight just below the handle of the Big Dipper (Ursa Major) Here is a shot of the Big Dipper to the west of my observatory roll-off roof:

Believe it or not (you had better!) this image of the Whirlpool Galaxy is the result of stacking 38 5-second shots using a program for Mac called "Lynkeos." Simply amazing given that you could hardly make out anything in the 5 second shots! This galaxy is also known as M51.
Finally I took a "circumpolar" photograph by pointing the camera at the "North Star" (Polaris) and leaving the shutter open for about 10 minutes. You can see the earth's rotation creating little arcs in the stars!

Well that is all for one night! Maybe I'll get three nights in a row!
God is good!

1 comment:

  1. "In the stars His handiwork I see...��" I especially love that circumpolar photo! Thanks for the tour Sunday night- we all loved it!