Solar System Picture Gallery


Most of the solar system images are recored in the Ruhrgebiet in Germany. The seeing is most of the time not very good (3-5/10 according to the pickering scale). For H alpha shots I use a TMB 115/805 APO with a 100 mm Baader C-ERF frontfilter and a PST Etalon combined with a 2" diagonal. For moon and planet I use the recently aquired DMK31AU03.AS, a black and white USB camera with 1024x768 pixel and 30 frames per seconds. The results are better regarding sharpness compared to the Phillips Toucam.

==> here is my Halpha imaging setup


A animation of Mars on November 09, 2020. I used 2 hours of data to generate an animation of the rotation with the morphing tool in PaintStar.

Celestron C11 XLT with eyepice projection using a Kasai 7mm Ortho@11000mm focal length. ASI120Mini@20ms, Gain 70. IRGB composite with 60% of 10000 frames each. 10 Micron GM2000 mount. Firecapture, Autostakkert, Registax 6 and Photoshop.

 

Even more Mars pictures from November 2020, roughly one month after opposition. The size of the Mars disc shriked to 18,5". Weather is playing games with me. I have to wait hours in my Observatory for short periods of clear skies. Catching 10000 frames per filter takes about 2-3 Minutes. However, seeing is ok. Unfortunately, the optical effects of the jet stream causes ring-like artifacts on the eastern side of the Mars disc.

Celestron C11 XLT with eyepice projection using a Kasai 7mm Ortho@11000mm focal length. ASI120Mini@20ms, Gain 70. IRGB composite with 60% of 10000 frames each. 10 Micron GM2000 mount. Firecapture, Autostakkert, Registax 6 and Photoshop.

 

Another Mars from November 3, 2020 between 19:34 and 20:16 UTC. The most prominent feature on this side of the Planet is Syrtis Major Planum, looking like the Indian subcontinent. It is flanked by Isidis Planitia on the left and Arabia Terra on the right. Near the center is Hellas Planitia. As opposition is over, Mars shrinks to 19" and shows a slight phase. Unfortunately, the opposition month October was dominated by unstable weather and bad seeing. Only in early November weather stabilized again, but still with mediocre seeing conditions. The Celestron C11 challenges me, as I have to collimate the optics after each pier flip on a star again at high magnification, to compensate for the inevitable mirror flop and to get the best optical performance out of the 11" aperture.

Celestron C11 XLT with eyepice projection using a Kasai 7mm Ortho@6900mm focal length. ASI120Mini@13ms. IR-RGB composite with 60% of 10000 stacked frames each. 10 Micron GM2000 mount. Firecapture, Autostakkert, Registax 6 and Photoshop..

 

More Mars pictures from the opposition in October 2020. I had to use short moments with clear skies during a long bad weather period. The new C11 however makes a good job. This time I aquired 10000 frames per channel each. Image quality is much better. Derotation however did not deliver a better sharper image. Please not the blueish fog at the pole and in some regions. I collected several dozend of Gigabyte of Mars videos in the last two month.

Celestron C11 XLT with eyepice projection using a Kasai 7mm Ortho@11000mm focal length. ASI120Mini@20ms, Gain 70. IRGB composite with 60% of 10000 frames each. 10 Micron GM2000 mount. Firecapture, Autostakkert, Registax 6 and Photoshop.

 

Mars on almost the same time, one day later than the previous picture, on October 14, 2020. Conditions were a little worse than the day before. The bright spot on the upper right is Olympus Mons. This high volcano is visible, because the blue filter catches the haze that surrounds the peak.

Celestron C11 XLT with eyepice projection using a Kasai 7mm Ortho@8700mm focal length. ASI120Mini@7ms, Gain 50. IR-RGB composite with 40% of 3000 frames each. 10 Micron GM2000 mount. Firecapture, Autostakkert, Registax 6 and Photoshop.

 

Another Mars picture from October 13, 2020. I had to fight with the bad weather conditions in late September and October, just during the opposition of the red planet. Mars reached a diamater of 22" during the 2020 opposition in October. Seeing was moderate. I had luck and could aquire a used Celestron C11 XLT in mint condition just in time for Mars opposition. In contrast to the ASA 10N, the C11 has a much smaller central obstruction and hence a better contrast for planetary imaging. Furthermore, the long native focal length of the optics is useful for having the optimum pixel scale of about 0,1"/px.

Celestron C11 XLT with eyepice projection using a Kasai 7mm Ortho@8700mm focal length. ASI120Mini@7ms, Gain 50. IR-RGB composite with 40% of 3700 frames each. 10 Micron GM2000 mount. Firecapture, Autostakkert, Registax 6 and Photoshop.

 

It is a long time ago since I posted a planetary image on my website. And I have never posted an image of Mars as I had none at all. So 2020 is the first time I had the opportunity to make an attempt to get a reasonable image of Mars. The red planet has a very good opposition sight in 2020 with about 22" diameter and a high altitude at my location. I used a newly aquired ASI120mmPro Mini and a QHY filter wheel with Optolong RGB filter to make an RGB composite. As seeing at my location is usually not very favourable for high resolution planetary imaging, the pictures have limited quality. Furthermore, the used ASA 10N Astrograph with 950mm focal length and a very large central obstruction of the secondary mirror is not the best weapon of choice for planetary imaging.

ASA 10N f3.8 with eyepice projection using a Kasai 7mm Ortho@6000mm focal length. ASI120Mini@6ms, Gain 50. RGB composite with 20% of 3000 frames each. 10 Micron GM2000 mount. Firecapture and Photoshop.

 

This is an images stack of the transit of the planet Mercury against the sun, shot on 09.05.2016 between 13:10 and 13:26 CEST. The small disc of the planet Mercury is slowly moving across the surface of the sun. The second picture from left was taken only seconds after the first contact and the 6th picture from left at the second contact.

I shot this image stack with my Canon 5DsR on a Canon EF 500 f4 L IS II USM super tele lens and a EF 2x III teleconverter at 1000mm focal length and f8. I used a Baader sun filter foil to reduce the solar energy and achieved 1/800s shutter speed at ISO200. The Sachtler DV6 on a Cartoni Smartstop tripod was used.

 

On 03.10.2011 I had an unusual good seeing at my location and fortunately I had time to make some videos of Jupiter with its moon Ganymed.

Celestron C9 with 2,5x Barlow at 5675 mm. DMK 31 with color filter wheel. 600 Frames stacked in Registax and Photoshop.

 

 

 

Planets. As the seeing from my location is most of the time very bad (3-4/10) I have not really many acceptable pictures of planets:

Webcam shots of the Moon. All the pictures are shot with a DMK31 USB camera in black and white, stacked and sharpened in Registax and Photoshop.

Sun in H alpha. I ue a modified Coronado PST Etalon with a 100 mm Baader C-ERF frontfilter for my TMB 115-805 APO, as well as a DMK31 USB camera.