Astrophotography on the Go

Author: Joseph Ashley
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 3319098314
Format: PDF, Mobi
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No longer are heavy, sturdy, expensive mounts and tripods required to photograph deep space. With today's advances in technology, all that is required is an entry-DSLR and an entry level GoTo telescope. Here is all of the information needed to start photographing the night sky without buying expensive tracking mounts. By using multiple short exposures and combining them with mostly ‘freeware’ computer programs, the effect of image rotation can be minimized to a point where it is undetectable in normal astrophotography, even for a deep-sky object such as a galaxy or nebula. All the processes, techniques, and equipment needed to use inexpensive, lightweight altazimuth and equatorial mounts and very short exposures photography to image deep space objects are explained, step-by-step, in full detail, supported by clear, easy to understand graphics and photographs. Currently available lightweight mounts and tripods are identified and examined from an economic versus capability perspective to help users determine what camera, telescope, and mount is the best fit for them. A similar analysis is presented for entry-level telescopes and mounts sold as bundled packages by the telescope manufacturers. This book lifts the veil of mystery from the creation of deep space photographs and makes astrophotography affordable and accessible to most amateur astronomers.

Video Astronomy on the Go

Author: Joseph Ashley
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 3319469371
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Author Joseph Ashley explains video astronomy's many benefits in this comprehensive reference guide for amateurs. Video astronomy offers a wonderful way to see objects in far greater detail than is possible through an eyepiece, and the ability to use the modern, entry-level video camera to image deep space objects is a wonderful development for urban astronomers in particular, as it helps sidestep the issue of light pollution. The author addresses both the positive attributes of these cameras for deep space imaging as well as the limitations, such as amp glow. The equipment needed for imaging as well as how it is configured is identified with hook-up diagrams and photographs. Imaging techniques are discussed together with image processing (stacking and image enhancement). Video astronomy has evolved to offer great results and great ease of use, and both novices and more experienced amateurs can use this book to find the set-up that works best for them. Flexible and portable, they open up a whole new way of seeing space.

Making Beautiful Deep Sky Images

Author: Greg Parker
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 3319463160
Format: PDF, ePub
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This book is based around the author’s beautiful and sometimes awe-inspiring color images and mosaics of deep-sky objects. The book describes how similar "Hubble class" images can be created by amateur astronomers in their back garden using commercially available telescopes and CCD cameras. Subsequent processing and image enhancement in the "electronic darkroom" is covered in detail as well. A range of telescopes and equipment is considered, from the author’s 11-inch with Hyperstar camera, down to more affordable instruments. Appendices provide links to free software – not available from a single source – and are themselves an invaluable resource.

Budget Astrophotography

Author: Timothy J. Jensen
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 1493917730
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Here are clear explanations of how to make superb astronomical deep-sky images using only a DSLR or webcam and an astronomical telescope – no expensive dedicated CCD cameras needed! The book is written for amateur astronomers interested in budget astrophotography – the deep sky, not just the Moon and planets – and for those who want to improve their imaging skills using DSLR and webcams. It is even possible to use existing (non-specialist astronomical) equipment for scientific applications such as high resolution planetary and lunar photography, astrometry, photometry, and spectroscopy. The introduction of the CCD revolutionized astrophotography. The availability of this technology to the amateur astronomy community has allowed advanced science and imaging techniques to become available to almost anyone willing to take the time to learn a few, simple techniques. Specialized cooled-chip CCD imagers are capable of superb results in the right hands – but they are all very expensive. If budget is important, the reader is advised on using a standard camera instead. Jensen provides techniques useful in acquiring beautiful high-quality images and high level scientific data in one accessible and easy-to-read book. It introduces techniques that will allow the reader to use more economical DSLR cameras – that are of course also used for day-to-day photography – to produce images and data of high quality, without a large cash investment.

Astro Imaging Projects for Amateur Astronomers

Author: Jim Chung
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 3319185462
Format: PDF
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This is the must-have guide for all amateur astronomers who double as makers, doers, tinkerers, problem-solvers, and inventors. In a world where an amateur astronomy habit can easily run into the many thousands of dollars, it is still possible for practitioners to get high-quality results and equipment on a budget by utilizing DIY techniques. Surprisingly, it's not that hard to modify existing equipment to get new and improved usability from older or outdated technology, creating an end result that can outshine the pricey higher-end tools. All it takes is some elbow grease, a creative and open mind and the help of Chung's hard-won knowledge on building and modifying telescopes and cameras. With this book, it is possible for readers to improve their craft, making their equipment more user friendly. The tools are at hand, and the advice on how to do it is here. Readers will discover a comprehensive presentation of astronomical projects that any amateur on any budget can replicate – projects that utilize leading edge technology and techniques sure to invigorate the experts and elevate the less experienced. As the "maker" community continues to expand, it has wonderful things to offer amateur astronomers with a willingness to get their hands dirty. Tweaking observing and imaging equipment so that it serves a custom purpose can take your observing options to the next level, while being fun to boot.

Inside PixInsight

Author: Warren A. Keller
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 3319256823
Format: PDF
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In this book, Warren Keller reveals the secrets of astro-image processing software PixInsight in a practical and easy to follow manner, allowing the reader to produce stunning astrophotographs from even mediocre data. As the first comprehensive post-processing platform to be created by astro-imagers for astro-imagers, it has for many, replaced the generic graphics editors as the software of choice. With clear instructions from Keller, astrophotographers can get the most from its tools to create amazing images. Capable of complex post-processing routines, PixInsight is also an advanced pre-processing software, through which astrophotographers calibrate and stack their exposures into completed master files. Although it is extremely powerful, PixInsight has been inadequately documented in print--until now. With screenshots to help illustrate the process, it is a vital guide.

Scientific Astrophotography

Author: Gerald Hubbell
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 1461451736
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Scientific Astrophotography is intended for those amateur astronomers who are looking for new challenges, once they have mastered visual observing and the basic imaging of various astronomical objects. It will also be a useful reference for scientifically inclined observers who want to learn the fundamentals of astrophotography with a firm emphasis on the discipline of scientific imaging. This books is not about making beautiful astronomical images; it is about recording astronomical images that are scientifically rigorous and from which accurate data can be extracted. This book is unique in that it gives readers the skills necessary for obtaining excellent images for scientific purposes in a concise and procedurally oriented manner. This not only gets the reader used to a disciplined approach to imaging to maximize quality, but also to maximize the success (and minimize the frustration!) inherent in the pursuit of astrophotography. The knowledge and skills imparted to the reader of this handbook also provide an excellent basis for “beautiful picture” astrophotography! There is a wealth of information in this book – a distillation of ideas and data presented by a diverse set of sources and based on the most recent techniques, equipment, and data available to the amateur astronomer. There are also numerous practical exercises. Scientific Astrophotography is perfect for any amateur astronomer who wants to go beyond just astrophotography and actually contribute to the science of astronomy.

Observing Nebulae

Author: Martin Griffiths
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 3319328840
Format: PDF, Kindle
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This book enables anyone with suitable instruments to undertake an examination of nebulae and see or photograph them in detail. Nebulae, ethereal clouds of gas and dust, are among the most beautiful objects to view in the night sky. These star-forming regions are a common target for observers and photographers. Griffiths describes many of the brightest and best nebulae and includes some challenges for the more experienced observer. Readers learn the many interesting astrophysical properties of these clouds, which are an important subject of study in astronomy and astrobiology. Non-mathematical in approach, the text is easily accessible to anyone with an interest in the subject. A special feature is the inclusion of an observational guide to 70 objects personally observed or imaged by the author. The guide also includes photographs of each object for ease of identification along with their celestial coordinates, magnitudes and other pertinent information. Observing Nebulae provides a ready resource to allow anyone with a little experience in astronomy, whether professional or amateur, to locate, identify and record the nebulae in our home galaxy. The author enables the observer to use a telescope and filters to the best advantage to see these celestial wonders, or to couple filters to a CCD camera or digital SLR camera in order to take quality images of celestial objects. By using these techniques it is even possible to make a valid contribution to professional investigations. And the views are unbeatable.

The Observer s Guide to Planetary Motion

Author: Dominic Ford
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 1493906291
Format: PDF, Kindle
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To the naked eye, the most evident defining feature of the planets is their motion across the night sky. It was this motion that allowed ancient civilizations to single them out as different from fixed stars. “The Observer’s Guide to Planetary Motion” takes each planet and its moons (if it has them) in turn and describes how the geometry of the Solar System gives rise to its observed motions. Although the motions of the planets may be described as simple elliptical orbits around the Sun, we have to observe them from a particular vantage point: the Earth, which spins daily on its axis and circles around the Sun each year. The motions of the planets as observed relative to this spinning observatory take on more complicated patterns. Periodically, objects become prominent in the night sky for a few weeks or months, while at other times they pass too close to the Sun to be observed. “The Observer’s Guide to Planetary Motion” provides accurate tables of the best time for observing each planet, together with other notable events in their orbits, helping amateur astronomers plan when and what to observe. Uniquely each of the chapters includes extensive explanatory text, relating the events listed to the physical geometry of the Solar System. Along the way, many questions are answered: Why does Mars take over two years between apparitions (the times when it is visible from Earth) in the night sky, while Uranus and Neptune take almost exactly a year? Why do planets appear higher in the night sky when they’re visible in the winter months? Why do Saturn’s rings appear to open and close every 15 years? This book places seemingly disparate astronomical events into an understandable three-dimensional structure, enabling an appreciation that, for example, very good apparitions of Mars come around roughly every 15 years and that those in 2018 and 2035 will be nearly as good as that seen in 2003. Events are listed for the time period 2010-2030 and in the case of rarer events (such as eclipses and apparitions of Mars) even longer time periods are covered. A short closing chapter describes the seasonal appearance of deep sky objects, which follow an annual cycle as a result of Earth’s orbital motion around the Sun.

Grab n Go Astronomy

Author: Neil English
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 149390826X
Format: PDF
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Like everyone else, most amateur astronomers live busy lives. After a long day or work or looking after young children, the last thing you want as an observer is to have to lug out a large telescope and spend an hour getting it ready before it can be used. Maybe you are going on vacation somewhere in the countryside where there are sure to be dark skies, but you don’t necessarily want astronomy to dominate the trip. Or suppose you are not quite committed to owning a large telescope, but curious enough to see what a smaller, portable setup can accomplish. These are times when a small “grab ’n’ go” telescope, or even a pair of binoculars, is the ideal instrument. And this book can guide you in choosing and best utilizing that equipment. What makes a telescope fall into the “grab ’n’ go” category? That’s easy – speed of setting up, ease of use, and above all, portability. In Part I of this book, we survey the various types of equipment, including accessories and mounts, that are available, and what it is best for what kind of viewing. Part II is about using your grab ’n’ go telescope to visit a wealth and wide variety of objects. There are chapters on solar, lunar and planetary observing, as well as descriptions of many deep sky objects, including double and variable stars, planetary, emission and reflection nebulae, open and globular clusters and distant galaxies. This ambitious text is dedicated to those who love to or – because of their limited time – must observe the sky at a moment’s notice, whether from the comfort of a backyard or while on business or vacation far from home. Everything you need to know is here. So get started!.