Sunday, December 18, 2005

Glorious Saturn rises in the east

Ah, my favourite planet is back. Saturn is rising earlier. From my back garden I'm getting a clear and unobstructed line of site to the ringed giant. I spent a good three hours imaging Saturn on 17th December 2005. Temperatures had dipped to almost -2C in the local area so it was back to looking like an Inuit again!

Click on each image to view it at the proper size.

image of saturn

Tonight I tested out my IR filter for the first time, though I must admit on Saturn it made little difference compared to images without the IR filter. I've read that a yellow #11 Meade filter will do much to to bring out the mid equitorial belt on Saturn. I'll have to try that out next time.

image of saturn

I had a rather peculiar experience when it came to processing the AVI files in Registax. I was using the Philips ToUcam Pro II 840K for the first time (thanks Robin!). It comes with a rather nice video capture application called VRecord. The default colour space/codec setting in in this software is set to I420. It appears Registax 3 doesn't like AVI files captured using the I420 codec. When I tried to process a 1350 frame AVI file it had only managed to stack 78% of the frames after six hours! I decided to capture an AVI indoors of the sofa and use the IYUV codec which is selectable in VRecord. Registax appeared to like this file very much. Therefore, I used VirtualDub to convert all the AVI files IYUV AVI files. I later received an email from the author of Registax who recommended I use the "Save old format AVI" in VirtualDub. I haven't tried this out yet but I'll give it a go later.

image of saturn

Seeing cinditions were pretty average to poor tonight, even though it was cold and cloud free. I had trouble getting a sharp focus. I'm going to have to make a Hartman mask very soon and use that to see if I can improve the accuracy of my focusing.

image of saturn


At Mon Dec 19, 01:16:00 am UTC, Anonymous Tom said...

Hey they came out great! My "sky shack" is finished and I will be bringing it out tomorrow. Its a little shelter with heat for the computer, so I may be back in business. Hope the LX200 can take the cold though.

At Mon Dec 19, 02:35:00 am UTC, Anonymous Rob said...

Nice shots.

At Mon Dec 19, 06:11:00 am UTC, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice job man. Apart of the image...annotations are really good. Which s/w is used for annotations? Good Luck


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