galacticsights

astrophotography

Equipment

The Type of Telescope We Use

We use two different Newton Reflector Telescopes.
The latest one is a ONCT 12" f/4 Carbon Newton from Telescope Service in Germany. This Newtonian is equipped with a TS 2,5" Wynne Coma Corrector and a 2.5" MoonLite Focuser with a High Resolution Stepper Motor.

The second one is a Skywatcher Quattro 8CF 200 DS Fibre OTA Newton Carbon with 2" dual speed focuser, stepper motor and a Skywatcher Newtonian F4 Coma Corrector.

Teleskop Service: Excellent shop, very responsive and knowledgable, fast delivery.


The Type of Mount We Use

We started first with a Skywatcher AZ-EQ6 Pro SyncScan GoTo. Due to the 12" Newtonian being heavier we upgraded our mount to a iOptron CEM60 Center-Balanced Equatorial Mount.


The Type of Camera We Use

Cameras - Nikon DSLR D810A, Nikon D7100
The D810A is Nikon's first full-frame DSLR dedicated to astrophotography. A specialized infrared cut filter captures the red tones of H-alpha emission nebulae. Having first used a standard Nikon DSLR camera, we were thrilled by the superb capturing of the red colours often found in nebulae.


The Type of Autoguiding We Use

The Lacerta MGEN2 Stand-Alone Guider is a fully functioning, reliable and high sensitivity precision autoguider that will guide your telescope basically without a PC or laptop. This device consists of a simple 50mm (9x50) finderscope connected to a CCD camera. It comes with a controller that shows the live image of the camera and allows the user to control the software. Alternatively the autoguider can be controlled remotely by a Windows app via USB, which is our preferred method.

Teleskop Austria: Top Equipment from Lacerta, excellent service, fast delivery.


The Kind of Session Control We Use

We tested many tethering tools and learned from each of them. For over two years now we are very happy with the Astro Photography Tool APT. APT is a very versatile software that has the right tools for planning, collimating, aligning, focusing, framing, controlling/tethering, imaging, synchronizing, scheduling, meridian flipping, analyzing and monitoring. All its features are packed in one comprehensive interface.
The underlying software to connect the devices like mount, focuser or planetarium software is based on the ASCOM platform version 6.

APT - Astro Photography Tool: Superb Tool and a wonderful team around Ivo. Great support.

ASCOM - Standards for Astronomy.


The Type of Collimation Aid We Use

MetaGuide is a video-based tool for precise collimation using the in-focus diffraction pattern of a star. MetaGuide also autoguides and has several novel features that allow optimal guiding of mid-range mounts under typical seeing conditions. MetaGuide can provide insight into both the optics of the telescope, and the tracking behavior of the mount. Since MetaGuide does not support NIKON cameras directly, we use digiCamControl as webcam server.

MetaGuide - Collimating and Guiding

digiCamControl - Open Source Project


The Type of Polar Adjustment Aid We Use

The ALccd-QHY PoleMaster is an innovative electronic polar alignment aid for almost any astronomical mount. QHYCCD's PoleMaster reduces the polar alignment process by employing a highly sensitive camera. Mounted to the front of the RA axis, the the polar alignment camera will capture an image of the northern sky and then will calculate true north based on that image. Displaying this information and RA rotation on a screen, you can then quickly and easily adjust the mount to the correct position. The PoleMaster is very handy, fast and reliable.

QHYCCD - PoleMaster


The Type of Power Supply We Use

Power supply is essential out in the field if no power plug is available. We are very happy with our Goal Zero Yeti 400 Solar Generator.


This and That

AOKswiss - Astro Optik Kohler: A rich source for astro equipment.