Readers’ wildlife photos

August 5, 2022 • 8:00 am

Today we have some lovely astronomy pictures by reader Terry Platt. His captions are indented, and please click the pictures to enlarge them.

Here are some astronomical pictures for your WEIT webpage. All are ‘Hydrogen alpha’ images, taken through a 656 nM deep red filter to show only glowing hydrogen. This removes most light pollution and emphasises the gas and dust in the nebulae.

M20 – often called the ‘Trifid nebula’. In the constellation of Sagittarius on the Milky Way, as are all these objects.

M8 – the ‘Lagoon nebula’.

M16 – the ‘Eagle’ or ‘Star Queen’ nebula [JAC: also known as the Eagle Nebula] – famous for the ‘Pillars of Creation’ at the centre.

M17 – the ‘Omega’ or ‘Swan’ nebula.

All were taken from Bracknell in the south of England, using a 150 mm ‘Esprit’ refractor and Starlight Xpress 694 CCD camera.

8 thoughts on “Readers’ wildlife photos

  1. Wow! This set has a PUNCH to it!

    Hydrogen – never knew light pollution can be filtered like that…

  2. Very beautiful. I would love to know more details. In particular, the focal length and sensor size and integration time.

  3. Those are wonderful pictures. Like Lou, I too would love to know more details. I was particularly intrigued as to how Terry got such fine detail – anyone who has peered at the heavens through a telescope will know how atmospheric turbulence plays havoc with the image. As chance would have it, on the same day I came across this excellent photo of Saturn on Twitter: and the author said that he used a technique called “stacking”. I’d love to hear more from Terry on this.

    1. Jumbo, I am almost sure Terry used stacking. I hope he can give us more details. There are nice free programs for stacking (averaging) multiple images to reduce noise and get those nice smooth gradients. He probably also cooled the sensor of his camera down to -20 degrees C or thereabouts, to further reduce noise.

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