Camera - Olympus EPL1 micro 4/3rds digital camera - 12 MP.

The standard zoom lens is great for photos on holiday, but no good for astrophotography. I've bought several adapters that allow me to put a range of lenses on the camera including my OM series:-

  • 28mm
  • 50mm f1.4
  • 35 - 70 zoom
  • 75-150 zoom
  • 500mm

The nature of the micro 4/3rd system is the focal length of each lens is effectively doubled - so the 75 - 150 zoom becomes a 150 - 300 zoom.

 

3. Astronomy -Photos 

After months of waiting for the weather to clear I finally have my barn door tracker working, and the skies are clear. These are the results of my initial calibration shots.

Altair, single image with 70mm lens (=150mm) 15 x 10 degree field. no image processing, 60 secs F5.6 - click here for full size image

17.45hrs 55 deg N, 28th July - 4 stacked images of 60 secs duration - click here for full sized image

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August - just outside of Bedale, North Yorkshire. Finally a chance to try out the tracker with a clear dark sky. The tracker performed very well. As I hadn't used the tracker for several weeks I recalibrated the motor to run at 1 rpm - took around 10 mins. Alignment was "good enough" and the sky was a wonderful black - perhaps not as black as other parts of the World, but black as it gets in England. Most of my shots were taken with a 100mm (equivalent) lens, ASA 400 and around F2. One of the shots captured a meteor burning up or possibly a satellite flare. The only thing that interfered with the astrophotography was my telescope. I was having so much fun looking through the scope that I kept forgetting to take photos.

Image 1 - The handle of the Plough with Mizar towards the top left corner. image taken 20 Aug 12, 23:05 hrs, 60 secs duration, 100mm focal length. Can anyone identify the satellite?

Image 2 - Part of the Milky Way, towards the Zenith. Image taken 20 Aug 12, 22:48 hrs, 60 secs duration, 100mm focal length

Image 3 - same as image 2, but processed to remove most of background clutter in an attempt to make it easier to locate.

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Images from Users of my barn door mount kits:

  • Milky Way from Ayeshire - 2 min exposure - almost the first image taken by Paul of Ayrshire with this Barn Door Mount