Show All

  • 2016
    • April
      • Jupiter on the last day of March
        Here is my latest picture of Jupiter: it was captured last month (March 2016). It is rare these days that the sky is clear and I have time to image. I almost thought I would have forgotten how to do it, but I was able to get this image which is not bad for me.
        I used my Orion UK SPX 250 newto

  • 2015
    • January
      • Comet Lovejoy
        Comet C/2014Q2 "Lovejoy " is now visible from the Northern hemisphere. It appeared brightest on 10 January 2014 and will be visible for several more weeks as it gets closer to the sun before Perihelion on January 30th.
        Click the image to see the full-sized picture.

  • 2014
    • April
      • The Red Planet Returns
        Mars comes close to Earth every 18 months or so. This year opposition was on 8 April, and I was able to image the planet that night.

        This image was captured from my Orion SPX 250 telecope using an AE 3x Imagemage. The camera was Philips ToUCam 740 and I captured separate colour (using a

    • January
      • Jupiter at the Beginning of 2014
        In this very wet UK winter I found some gaps between cloud banks and took some images of Jupiter.
        The two images shown here show a stack of 740 frames from around 1200 captured at 00:44 and a stack of 800 frames from around 1700 captured at 00:55.
        Both the images show the red spot moving a

  • 2013
    • January
      • First Jupiter image of 2013
        Here is an image of Jupiter I captured a few days ago - my first of 2013. The Galilean moon Io is visible on the right of the picture.
        Click the picture to see the full-sized version.

  • 2012
    • November
      • Jupiter, 23 November 2012
        Seeing and transparency were not good in the sky on 23 November and there was a lot of humidity and mist in the air. However Jupiter was shining bright and I knew the Great Red Spot was going to be on view, so I captured a couple of AVIs of 3000 frames each with varying settings.
        I stacked 300

      • More pictures of Jupiter
        Here are a couple of recent pictures of Jupiter.
        Each is 300 frames stacked from a capture of 3000 frames. I have found recently that best results seem to be from capturing on the ToUCam 1/33sec exposures at 10fps, at least it takes less time than capturing at 5fps although in theory 5fps shou

    • October
      • Jupiter 15 October 2012
        Jupiter is now rising early enough that I can see it rise above my house around 3am. I imaged it on the night of 14 October, capturing 3000 frames and stacking 300 to create this picture.
        Imaging was done using a ToUCam Pro with 3x Imagemage on a SPX250 f6.3 Newtonian telescope.

    • May
      • Saturn and some of its moons
        The weather in the UK has finally improved and yesterday was the hottest day of the year here in Eastern England. I took the opportunity of a clear sky to have a look at Saturn, now just past opposition in the southern sky.

        Seeing was fairly good and I captured a couple of streams of ima

    • April
      • A bright pairing in the evening sky
        Recently it's been exceptionally good for seeing planets in the night sky. Mercury has now sunk out of sight but a few weeks ago you could see that planet plus Venus, Jupiter, Mars, and if you were willing to wait up a few more hours, Saturn - all in the same night.

        The recent pairi

    • January
      • Jupiter and Ganymede
        The weather cooled significantly here in England recently and the sky cleared for a couple of days. I was able to get this picture of Jupiter on Saturday night. I captured 4000 frames using my Orion SPX 250 telescope and used Registax 6 to stack the best 1400. The image was enhanced using that pr

      • Jan Timmermans: 1941 - 2012
        On Wednesday 4 January I was saddened to receive the news of the death of amateur astro-imager Jan Timmermans.

        Jan was an active member of several online groups and in the amateur astronomy community. I first came into contact with him in 2004 via the QCUIAG (QuickCam and Unconventional

  • 2011
    • November
      • Spots on the sun
        It's been a while since I imaged the sun. The last time was in fact the ISS-Crossing in August 2010.
        Today the sun is much more active than back then, and there are quite a few spots on the sun.
        Click the image to enlarge it!

        To identify all these sunspots I looked at This

      • Jupiter with Great Red Spot
        After a lot of cloudy nights, I got a clear sky before the fog came down on this November night.
        I captured three sequences of frames using my TouCam Pro and this was the best after stacking in Registax and processing with The Gimp.

        Click the picture to see it full-sized.
        In thi

    • October
      • GRS at last
        You have probably seen many images of Jupiter with the Great Red Spot prominent. This huge storm has been raging for hundreds of years (it was observed in the 1600s) and is large enough to fit the entire planet Earth within it.
        However most of my images in this blog so far have not included th

      • Jupiter and Io
        No...not that Jupiter and Io but the planet and its innermost moon.
        These two pictures were taken within 15 minutes of each other a few days ago on the night of 7 October.
        Click the pictures below to see them in full size.

        Each one is the result of stacking 3000 webcam frames ca

    • September
      • Tranquility Base
        It may be a long time since I got a decent image of Jupiter (see previous blog entry) but it's even longer since I did one of these. A mosaic of the lunar surface.
        This image was composed of four sections covering Mare Tranquilitatis, Mare Crisium, Mare Fecunditatis, and part of Mare Sere

      • Jupiter is back
        After a long gap, I have made a reasonable picture of Jupiter again, and with the Galilean satellite Europa, too. I have had a few tries recently but the weather here has been pretty bad and even when it was clear it was very windy, leading to very bad astronomical seeing.
        I captured this one

  • 2010
    • December
      • First full narrowband - M42 in Hubble Palette
        I recently acquired an S-II (Ionised Sulphur) filter, to go with my Hydrogen Alpha, and O-III (Doubly-Ionised Oxygen) filters. I can now do tri-colour narrowband imaging, assigning each of red, green, and blue to those three filters.
        I imaged the Orion Nebula using the new S-II filter, and com

    • October
      • Jupiter and a Comet
        On the night of 6 October I captured some more pictures of Jupiter. This one is a stack of 1440 frames, selected from 4000 captured with a ToUCam Pro 740 using K3CCDTools. Stacking and wavelet processing was done in Registax 5, while some further sharpening and cleaning up in The Gimp.

      • Comet 103P/Hartley2
        On 4 October I got my first view of a comet that's been raising hopes among amateur astronomers of seeing a brightish comet in our sky.

        I still haven't seen Comet 103P/Hartley2 in binoculars, but I saw it the other day through my Megrez 80 telescope and captured this image.
    • September
      • Eclipse on Jupiter - Io passes by

        Io is of course one of the four Galilean moons of Jupiter. As these moons orbit the planet they from time to time pass by the planet leaving a shadow on the disk of Jupiter. These shadows can be easily seen from Earth.

        I imaged Jupiter using my TouCam Pro on the night of 24 Septem

      • My best ever image of Jupiter
        Here is an image of Jupiter I captured last night. The night was a little cloudy and I didn't expect great results. The image on my screen while capturing looked reasonable but very blurry.
        However after capturing 2000 frames and stacking 864 of them it turns out to be the best image of