£10 Camera Tracker – First Light

 CHDK AstroKam, Deep Sky  Comments Off on £10 Camera Tracker – First Light
Jan 132020
 

I just built an astro camera tracker with bits costing around £10 and tried it out with my Canon SX230HS. It seemed to track very well and here is a shot of Orion made up of 35 exposures of 150 seconds stacked together in DSS and processed in StarTools.

Click for full image to check tracking accuracy

 Posted by at 10:17 am

M42 by CHDK AstroKam

 CHDK AstroKam, Deep Sky  Comments Off on M42 by CHDK AstroKam
Dec 232019
 
M42 by Canon SX530HS

Another shot taken with my £95 SX530HS. Software = CHDK, Astrokam, ASPS, PHD2, DSS, StarTools and Paint.Net.

I am a member of the Powershotters group who asked for some details on how I processed this image. Here is a light image:

Original light image. 180sec, 1600ISO, full aperture, 50x optical zoom.

and here is a dark image

Dark image

The 48 light and 15 dark images were stacked in Deep Sky Stacker along with 25 flats and 15 offsets to produce the FITS image below. This was then processed in StarTools to give the final result above.

FITS result in Deep Sky Stacker
 Posted by at 9:28 am

AstroKam Flame and Horsehead Nebulae

 CHDK AstroKam, Deep Sky  Comments Off on AstroKam Flame and Horsehead Nebulae
Nov 302019
 

Here is a shot I took with my SX530HS PowerShot at maximum optical zoom. Captured in CHDK AstroKam, guided by PHD2, stacked in Deep Sky Stacker and processed in StarTools and Paint.NET.

Not bad for a second hand camera with no telescope?

 Posted by at 2:50 pm

M42 and M45 by AstroKam

 CHDK AstroKam  Comments Off on M42 and M45 by AstroKam
Nov 182019
 

Took these using my Canon SX530HS controlled by AstroKam. Other software used: CHDK, PHD2, ASPS, DSS and StarTools.

M42
M45
 Posted by at 1:44 pm

CHDK AstroKam Overnight Test

 CHDK AstroKam  Comments Off on CHDK AstroKam Overnight Test
Sep 242019
 

I left AstroKam running overnight with my SX530HS recently and it worked great. I had set up an 8 target observing list in Cartes du Ciel and imported it into AstroKam with 60 minutes per target and 300 seconds per exposure. Darks and biases were set at 1 per 5 lights.

AstroKam automatically controlled PHD2 autoguiding and plate solved each target using All Sky Plate Solver to provide spot on aiming.

The next morning I used the sort module to remove any duff shots and satellite trails and then generate Deep Sky Stacker project files. These were then batch processed in DSS and processed in StarTools. Final touchup in Paint.Net and I got the results below.

These were all shot at 25x zoom so I can still zoom in to 50x for more detail.

 Posted by at 2:11 pm

Canon SX530HS First Light

 Deep Sky  Comments Off on Canon SX530HS First Light
Sep 022019
 
M31 with Canon SX530HS

Here is my first attempt at deep sky with my new (second-hand) Canon SX530HS compact camera. I shot this with a beta version of AstroKam that I hope to release soon. I only used about a third of the optical zoom range so there is plenty of scope (pun) to chase smaller targets.

Still messing with settings for it but I think it compares well with a similar shot I took with my Canon 1100D below.

M31
 Posted by at 12:03 pm

Dave’s SpeedCam

 Uncategorized  Comments Off on Dave’s SpeedCam
Jul 252019
 

Here are the first results from my upcoming SpeedCam app which turns any camera capable of shooting video into a radar speed gun. The graph below is a summary of traffic speed in my street over a 7 hour period. SpeedCam also saves a picture of each vehicle with its speed printed.

Summary graph from SpeedCam
 Posted by at 9:42 am

Vultures in DMS

 Birds  Comments Off on Vultures in DMS
May 292019
 

Dave Lochhaas kindly gave me permission to show his first published video using Dave’s Motion Stacker. Great to see how they trace out rollercoaster tracks in the sky.

 Posted by at 7:11 pm

Dave’s Motion Detector – First Trial

 Birds  Comments Off on Dave’s Motion Detector – First Trial
May 282019
 

This is a first test of my latest software. It allows you to scan multiple videos and only select scenes with action. Great for subjects like bird feeders above.

 Posted by at 10:42 am

Sunspot AR2738 13th April 2019 Timelapse

 Solar HA, Uncategorized  Comments Off on Sunspot AR2738 13th April 2019 Timelapse
Apr 152019
 

This was taken with my Coronado PST solar scope from Inverness, Scotland over 8 hours of sunshine. It repeats a couple of times at different speeds so you can watch the action.

 Posted by at 6:19 pm