Wednesday, May 27, 2009

M51 Whirlpool Galaxy - Test Run

The skies were clear last night, but transparency was maybe 3/5. I set up my LX200 out on the back patio, right next to my neighbor's porch light (he had gone to bed but left the #%@)* light on!)

Below is my first test run image of M51. It's about 30 minutes of data, using 30 second light frames (anything longer under these circumstances would have brought in too much light pollution). It's not great at all but this is what you get under heavily light polluted skies, thin clouds and no filters. When I get out under dark skies, with guiding in place, this object will appear very nice indeed.


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Ewan said...

Hi Phil! That's a very nice capture of M51. It's one DSO that I still have to observe. Hopefully I'll get around to it quite soon! I can sympathize with your situation. My next door neighbors have a fluorescent light in their kitchen that beams out into the back garden. I may buy them a blackout blind as a Christmas gift this year :-) I look forward to seeing the dark sky version of this.

Clear skies,


Phil said...

Thanks, Ewan!

Anonymous said...


Nice blog and nice photo of M51. My attempts haven't been that good with clear skies, so I eagerly await your next attempt under better conditions...

John F. (Arizona)