Category Archives: Comets

Comet NEOWISE in the Morning Sky

Comet NEOWISE on July 9, 2020. 20 seconds of exposure using 8×2 sec and 1×4 sec sub-images. Canon T3 at ISO 400, Sigma 28-70 Zoom at 70mm, F/4. Camera on tripod. Taken from a metro location with Bortle 7 red zone light pollution levels.

Clear skies, but muggy and lots of muck to shoot through with it that low. It was the clearest morning so far since the comet became visible. That’s a dirt pile in the foreground, btw and not a mountain. LoL!

Below is an image that is a reprocess job on the data with a different color balance, slightly more sub-images and tighter cropping.   I also did dark and offset calibration to try and reduce noise.

I was hoping it would come out better than the first one, but since conditions were sub-par to begin with,  I guess I will just have to wait until it gets in the evening skies to get a better shot.  Oh, well…

Comet NEOWISE on July 9, 2020. 48 seconds of exposure using 14×2 sec and 5×4 sec sub-images. Canon T3 at ISO 400, Sigma 28-70 Zoom at 70mm, F/4. Camera on tripod. Taken from a metro location with Bortle 7 red zone light pollution levels.

Imaging Session April 29, 2020

The Moon on Apr 29, 2020. Televue TV-85 at F/5.6, QHY183c, UHC-S filter.
Comet ATLAS (C/2019 Y4) on Apr 30, 2020 UT. 20×60 sec, Gain 30, Offset 15, QHY183c at -10C, UHC-S Filter, Televue TV-85 at F/5.6.
M81 & M82 Galaxies, 3hrs on Apr 29, 2020. 180×60 sec, Gain 30, Offset 15, QHY183c at -10C, UHC-S filter, Televue TV-85 at F/5.6.
M12 Globular Cluster on Apr 30, 2020. 70×60 sec, Gain 30, Offset 15, QHY183c at -10C, UHC-S filter, Televue TV-85 at F/5.6.

These are all the objects I managed to image on the night of Wednesday, April 29, 2020 and on into Thursday morning.  SharpCap 3.2 LiveStacking with dark and flat calibration plus dithering was used for acquisition.  Only minimal processing for all of these captures in Fitsworks and PS CS3.

I was trying not to waste a very clear evening after a storm had moved through earlier that day.  Not too bad, I guess.

Comet ATLAS (C/2019 Y4) Disintegration

Comet ATLAS on Apr 14, 2020, 03:42 UT. 20×30 sec, Gain 37, Offset 49, QHY183c at -20C, UHC-S Filter, Televue TV-85 at F/5.6.

Looks like Comet ATLAS was a dud.  It broke up into pieces after it had brightened much higher than predicted last month.  The brightening and breakup so soon afterwards indicates a large release of material from inside the object as it cracked open, so to speak.

By the time I took this pic, there were at least 3 to 5 major pieces in a line and the out-gassing of volatiles available was over with.   Just rock and dust was all that was left.

Comet ATLAS (C/2019 Y4)

Comet ATLAS (2019 Y4) on Mar 27, 2020, 3:05 UT. Base was 5×60 sec and I added another 10 minutes with 15 sec and 30 sec subs. QHY183c, UHC-S filter, TV-85 @ F/5.6.

I fought clouds on Mar 27, 2020 and also two nights before that on Mar 25, 2020.  The March 27th session produced this image.  The image data from the 25th was not worth posting.  This image, even though it is only a few minutes of exposure that I pieced together, was decent enough to post online.  Better than nothing, I suppose.

I am hoping that better conditions are coming soon.  I need to get a continuous set of  sub-images for this comet instead of having to put together a hodgepodge of exposures taken between bouts of cloud cover.