Saturday, October 10, 2015

#16 - Saturday, October 10, 2015 - I Need More Dumbbell

I focused on just one object tonight, since we didn’t get out there and set up until about 10 PM and it was cold: the Dumbbell Nebula again.  This time, it turned out rather well!  But the accepted frames ratio was terrible: out of the 125 I took, I only deemed 23 to be good, and DSS only took 18.  At 30s apiece, that’s 9 minutes total.  But, the sky was fairly dark, and it was high in the sky, so it turned out rather well.  It was also cold, which reduced camera noise, and it was subtracted easily by DSS.  Also, my alignment must have been pretty decent, since the nebula stayed in nearly the exact same position for most of the time.  
M27 Dumbbell Nebula
Nikon D3100 on the C8
18x30s, ISO-3200
[Author's Note: Wow, my definition of "rather well" has definitely changed!]

I’m quickly hitting the limit of what I can do, though.  18/125 photos is awful.  And it was at 250° azimuth and 50-60° altitude, so no problem at all with high field rotation.  It’s just periodic tracking error.  I really need a wedge :/







Monday, October 5, 2015

#15 - Monday, October 5, 2015 - Finally, some not-so-bad images!

What luck to get two nights in a row of mostly clear skies.  It was humid though, and it had been warm that day and was still kind of warm, so the visibility was pretty poor.  The sky was even brighter than it was on Sunday night.  (Actually, most of the sky was pretty dark on Sunday night).  This was my friend Jared’s first time looking through a telescope, and he was thoroughly impressed.  We caught Saturn just before it set, so it wasn’t very clear, but you could still see it reasonably well with the 13mm eyepiece.  We also looked at the Andromeda galaxy, a few clusters including Hercules, Butterfly and Double, and double star Mizar and Alcor in the Big Dipper, which is now mostly behind the trees to the northwest.  There were a bunch of persistent and spread-out airplane contrails, along with a few other high-altitude clouds, which made the visibility even worse, so finding a suitable object for photography was difficult.  I tried the Omega Nebula, but didn’t get many pictures before it wound up behind a cloud.  I only got four good ones (again, cable got jiggled and several were turned into JPEGs), which stacked reasonably well, but is also grainy and dim.  This one is a promising target – I have another version where I increased the luminosity, and you can see even more of it, and it’s quite pretty – but it’s close to setting, and it’s in the southwest where all the light is, so this might have to wait until next year.
M17 Swan Nebula - you can really see the swan here!
Nikon D3100 on my C8, 4x20s, ISO-3200

After having to give up on the Omega Nebula, I couldn’t find any other nebulae that were a) bright enough, b) high enough in the sky, and c) not too high in the sky.  It seemed like everything was either between 10-15° or above 70° [above the horizon].  On the other hand, if I can go out on another weekend night before it gets too cold, the North America nebula is starting to get low enough in the sky on toward midnight or 1 AM that I could try to image part of it – it’s huge!  Also, the Orion nebula is now rising at about 12:30 AM, so if I can go next weekend, I won’t be able to start imaging it until about 1:30 AM, when it’ll be closer to 20° high.  But it is very bright - +4 magnitude – so maybe like 60 or 70 images will make something good.  We’ll see.  Also, for the record, Stellarium is a fabulous app for planning!  Other things to try include the Eagle Nebula, which I haven’t tried yet because during the summer it was too high, but now that it’s lower, I took a 30-second single exposure just to see if I’ll be able to see it, and I can’t see really any gas at all.  On others like the Omega, Lagoon and Dumbbell Nebulae, the gas is apparent even in a single exposure.  So I’m not sure I can take long-enough pictures of it to be able to get anything worthwhile.  That one might have to wait until I get a focal reducer. 
After giving up on the Omega, I ended up just imaging the Double Cluster, which looks nice in the telescope, but star clusters don’t make for great photographs, at least I haven’t been able to do very well.  There is very little color information; the RGB curves are nearly delta spikes. [As it turns out, you want the RGB curves to be narrow spikes in your RAW images].  So this was 17 images (out of 57 originals) taken of the Double Cluster, or, at least, half of the cluster.  It’s pretty large, apparently.
Part of the Double Cluster, taken with my Nikon D3100 on the C8.
17x20s, ISO-3200






Sunday, October 4, 2015

#14 - Sunday, October 4, 2015 - Persist!

The long break was because I was gone for over half of September on work trips, and before that I was busy and the weather wasn’t good.  

I took some 220 pictures of the Dumbbell Nebula, but several things were not in my favor.
·         All of the good nebulae – Omega, Trifid, Lagoon, Eagle, etc. – are setting pretty early now, and since that puts them in the southwest, the direction of the town or city that is causing all the light in that part of the sky, imaging them yields not-very-good results. 
·         The camera cable got jiggled at some point, so over half the pictures were in JPEG before I realized it and reset that setting back to raw.  (The camera-control program I was using, digiCamControl, automatically sets the image to JPEG every time the camera is plugged in.  And no, I can’t edit the default settings.)
·         The Dumbbell Nebula was pretty high in the sky, up in the 60°-altitude range (part of the reason I picked it – somewhat less light and much less atmosphere), but that gets into the range where the tracking is poor for alt-az mounts.  So not only did it drift a lot, but the majority of the photos wad periodic tracking error.  So, out of 220, only 7 came out, since many were lost to JPEG and the rest to periodic error.


The picture didn’t turn out too badly, actually.  It is pretty grainy though.  And, of course, I always want more light.
M27 Dumbbell Nebula
Nikon D3100 on my C8, 7x30s, ISO-3200

Thursday, August 27, 2015

#13 - Thursday, August 27, 2015 - Don't image with the moon out

I decided to shelf Andromeda for now and try the Whirlpool Galaxy instead.  At first I wasn’t sure it was on the right spot, which it really needed to be because I could barely see it through the telescope, but sure enough, it showed up in a 30 second exposure!  Super exciting to see it. I played around with the telescope settings a bit, and decided to try much higher anti-backlash values.  At normal speeds, this causes a massive jump when I move the telescope, but at tracking speed, I thought this wouldn’t happen.  I think I got more of the stable pictures, but it wasn’t by much.  I took about 110 before the telescope got too dewy, which was early that night, only about 11:30 PM as opposed to the usual 1:30 AM or so.  I can’t remember how many DSS took, but not enough apparently, because I couldn’t even see it in the stacked image, even though I could just barely see it in the individual images.  This is because the moon was pretty full, bright, and high in the southern sky (which is what drove me to do the Whirlpool Galaxy in the first place, since it was one of the few objects in the northern sky).  Better luck next time.  I’ll just have to add the Moon as another discriminator against photo trips.  It’s fine for visual observing trips with my friends, since it looks so fantastic in the telescope view.

Single frame of M51 Whirlpool Galaxy taken on a moonlit night.
Tracking errors cause the stars to streak.
Nikon D3100 on my C8, 30s, ISO-12800



Monday, August 24, 2015

#12 - Monday, August 24, 2015 - Terrible Tracking

I messed around with different anti-backlash settings, but still couldn’t quite find any that worked well.  [Anti-backlash takes up the slack in the gears whenever they have to change direction by quickly spinning them at the end of a movement.]  I did also try moving the telescope in the same direction it was tracking after getting Andromeda aligned in the center and syncing on it in order to pick up the slack in the gears.  It didn’t seem to help, though. I think this is a real issue, though, but only for the first few photos – when I’m taking the test photos after moving it, the first two or three are really bad, but then it settles, so I think that’s how long it takes to pick up the play in the gears at tracking speed, about a minute.  Of some 217 photos I took, I accepted 102, and then DSS only accepted 62 of them.  Also, they were all accidentally taken in JPEG.  I went ahead and took darks and biases in JPEG too, but the dark subtraction doesn’t really work for compressed files, it needs to be pixel-by-pixel.  

[Author's Note: Don't ever take astro images in JPEG format! You literally lose data.  And then you can't stack them.  (Well, technically you can, but it turns out awful.)]






Saturday, August 22, 2015

#11 - Saturday, August 22, 2015

This was exclusively a photo trip.  I even left the camera on the telescope for alignment, so that GoTo would be programmed with the extra weight of the camera affecting how it moves.  (I can see quite well through the viewfinder, actually.)  I took about 150 photos of Andromeda.  For the first 75 or so, it slowly drifted up the frame, so I re-synced it after re-aligning it.  It didn’t rise as much this time.  
M31 Andromeda Galaxy
Nikon D3100 on my C8, 31x30s, ISO-12800

[Mo' data is mo' betta!  Except that M31 is far too large to fit the field-of-view (FOV) of my 8-inch.  But check out those dust lanes!  Also, I didn't know at the time that you had to move the Saturation slider up to 20-25% in DeepSkyStacker in order to get the color back.]





Friday, August 21, 2015

#10 - Friday, August 21, 2015 - Andromeda Woes

I brought two of my other friends along, Jessica and Ethan.  This was their first time stargazing, and they were amazed!  We looked at Saturn first of course, and then the Moon (1/2 waxing gibbous), as well as Neptune, the Butterfly Cluster, the Double Cluster,  the Andromeda Galaxy (which was particularly bright that evening), double star Mizar & Alcor, Arcturus, and M3, a globular cluster that appeared as a smudge.  They took off about midnight, and then Anton and I set to work on imaging Andromeda.
          
I took some 100 pictures (can’t remember the exact number), and 53 were stable enough to use.  DeepSkyStacker (DSS) accepted only 29 of those.  And the stacked image isn’t much to look at.
M31 Andromeda Galaxy
Nikon D3100, 29x30s, ISO-12800

More light-information is required, so more pictures.  [And for goodness sake, a lower ISO!] 





Tuesday, August 18, 2015

#9 - Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Anton & I looked at Saturn – it’s tilted 24 degrees towards us at the moment, so we should be able to see the Cassini division. With the high humidity and a low score on the “seeing” conditions rating on ClearDarkSky, there was a lot of shimmer, even under moderate power. But I think I could just make out the division.

M9 – neat-looking globular cluster. Didn’t photograph well for 30-second exposures, but you can see it. I tried stacking, and I took raw format photos, but these images turned out so dim and noisy that I aborted the operation.

M13 Hercules Cluster – Also a great-looking globular cluster. Still pretty dim under 30-second exposure, so I took a series of 30-second exposures, ISO 1600, in the raw format. However, either I need more photos to stack, or I’m not doing something right in DeepSkyStacker, because the stacked photo is very dark and I can barely see anything. It is even darker than the individual images, which leads me to believe I’m doing something wrong. Time to consult some YouTube tutorials.

Anton tried to find an asteroid based on its astronomical coordinates he found online, asteroid (15) Eunomia, in the eastern sky around 12:30 AM. We saw a dot of light, like a dim star, and there wasn’t anything in the telescope’s catalog that was nearby, so it may very well have been an asteroid. Cool!





Thursday, August 13, 2015

#8 - Thursday, August 13, 2015 - First stacked image

I moved the telescope from the asphalt to the grass – we originally moved it to the asphalt to reduce dew, but the grass helped reduce vibration during long exposures. I even waited until I sat down to hit the shutter. Thank goodness for the remote shutter! It’s the only way to take long exposures.

I tried the Lagoon Nebula again, and after trying different exposure times and ISOs, I decided on 30-second exposures and ISO-3200, and took 10 of them to try a post-processing technique called stacking using a software called DeepSkyStacker. Of the 10, only 8 were jitter-free, so this made for a 4-minute total exposure time. The resulting photo didn’t turn out much better than the individual ones, although I didn’t mess with the color or luminance settings. [About a week later, I did; below is the result. Much improved!] Also, my camera automatically subtracts a dark frame from photos with exposures longer than 6 seconds, so I didn’t use any dark frames in the software.
My log entry seems to disagree with the files I have; I count 12 images.
Nikon D3100 on my C8, 12x30s, ISO-3200

The sky rotation is evident in the stacked pictures – you can see the turning in the edges of the photo (before I cropped it). The DeepSkyStacker software is very good at aligning the points of light. Since the light pollution is too bright around here to do longer than 30-second exposures, an equatorial wedge isn’t necessary just yet. At some point though, when I live somewhere darker, I’ll shell out the money for one. [I later corrected this little problem with a light pollution reduction filter.]

Next, I tried the Eagle Nebula. While I can see the stars, I can’t see any gas, or maybe it is just barely visible in the image. Perhaps stacking several images for a 10 or 20 minute total exposure time will reveal it (thought later). Images I see online contain a lot of red, though, which may not show up well on my camera, since I don’t want to have the IR filter removed.

Next, I tried Messier 101, a spiral galaxy in the northern sky. You can just make it out in the image – you can see the core, and just barely see the arms. This one may also be a good candidate for stacking.

Next, I tried M17, the Swan/Omega/Checkmark Nebula. It showed up well on the camera screen, but turned out to be darker when I looked at it on a larger screen. Will need to try this one again as well. Also a good candidate for stacking.
Single frame on M17, using my Nikon D3100 on the C8.
30s, ISO-3200.

I figured out that if I sync the scope to a nearby star, it is more accurate at finding the object – M17 was nearly in the center of the view on goto.

I tried the Eagle Nebula again, a couple 20-seconds and a 1-minute, but no go.

I tried the ET Cluster, NGC 457, and it is a very nice cluster of stars. Will need to try again to try and get a shot without jitter.

Helix Nebula – used Deneb Algedi to sync. Couldn’t find it, or was very dim.

Wild Duck Cluster – synced to Altair. Couple bright stars, lots of noise though. Not much to see in the shots.

Not many meteors tonight. It was supposed to be the peak of the Perseids!







Wednesday, August 12, 2015

#7 - Wednesday, August 12, 2015 - First deep sky object image!

I attached my camera to the telescope and tried getting a photo of my first deep-sky object.  I focused the telescope with the camera attached using a nearby star, and then slewed to where the telescope thought the Lagoon Nebula was, and took a 1-minute exposure using the remote shutter, which worked like a charm.  I got a great photo on the first try! 
My first deep-sky object! (I'm not counting the one of M7). 
Single frame with my Nikon D3100 on the C8, 60s, ISO-3200.

A little bit of jitter, but not bad, and you can see a decent amount of red light, despite the IR filter built into the camera.
[A note here: Modern consumer cameras are built to have as similar of a spectrum to the human eye as they can.  This means that green dominates, and transmission in the red and infrared wavelengths is severely limited, since we can't see IR and are not very sensitive to red.  This is a bane for astrophotography, since many things in the sky glow a brilliant, deep red!]

 I tried taking some longer exposures, but there was too much noise.  I tried Andromeda next, but I couldn’t get a still one in the few tries I made, and all you could see was the bright center, no detail on the arms.  I also tried Bode’s nebula, but it wasn’t where the telescope slewed to.  I also tried the Eagle Nebula, but couldn’t get anything with that either.  Then I tried the Cat’s Eye nebula, and I didn’t think at first that it was in the frame, but later I looked at its apparent size – 0.4 x 0.3 arcmin – and realized that the large blue dot in the photo I took of that area was, in fact, the nebula.
The Cat's Eye Nebula is the blue circle to the left of center.
Nikon D3100 on my C8, 60s, ISO-3200.

Last, I tried the Dumbbell Nebula, and was pleasantly surprised!  It is very dim in the 30-second exposure (the 1-min exposure had some jitter), but you can just make out its pretty blues and greens!
That thing you can juuuuust barely see to the left of center is the Dumbbell Nebula (M27). 
Nikon D3100 on my C8, 30s, ISO-3200

On top of the excitement of getting some images of deep-sky objects, the Perseids were exciting as well.  While we weren’t able to see nearly as many as predicted (40-60 per hour; we saw maybe 5 per hour), it was still really neat to see them, and some long-exposure shots of the sky revealed several more.  I learned from my friend Emily, whom I also brought along that night, that having a slower f/stop allowed me to take longer exposures without star trails, as long as 30 seconds with f/5.6.  This did require a higher ISO, though; I took some with 6400.  This made for some noisy pictures, especially with all the glow from the city.
The Milky Way with a foreground of meteors.
Nikon D3100, 18mm @ f/5, 30s, ISO-6400






Friday, August 7, 2015

#6 - Friday, August 7, 2015

It was relatively cloudy until about midnight, but then all the clouds cleared, and the moon didn’t rise until 1 AM, so we had pretty good darkness.  We went hunting for some deep-sky objects, but could only see dim smudges.  We looked at Bode’s Nebula (well, it's actually a galaxy), the Whirlpool Galaxy, globular cluster M3, and the Andromeda Galaxy.  We looked at the Whirlpool Galaxy and Andromeda with binoculars as well.  We also looked at Neptune, which did have a bluish color to it, but couldn’t quite find Pluto.   We forgot to put the dew shield on, so that ended our night early, plus I really need to clean the corrector plate, both from drying dew spots and my attempt at an isopropyl alcohol solution that I made my own distilled water for that I suspect wasn’t distilled enough. [For all of you who just cringed at the thought of me using semi-distilled water with isopropyl alcohol to clean a multi-coated optic, do not fret - the corrector plate suffered no permanent damage!]  

Next week is the Perseids meteor shower!!  And it will be a moonless night, so I’m going to set up the camera to try and take some long-exposure pictures of some deep-sky objects.  I’m going to order a remote shutter button for my camera when I order the cleaning fluid so I can take more than 30-second exposures on Bulb mode.




Thursday, July 30, 2015

#5 - Thursday, July 30, 2015 - ISS, more photo attempts

We watched the ISS flyover!  It was pretty high in the sky, and transitted for like 6 minutes.  I almost caught a glimpse in the telescope as it dipped below the trees – it was hard to keep up with.  Anton caught a few glimpses.  I also got a long-exposure photo of it flying across the frame.  
Overhead passage of the International Space Station!
Nikon D3100, 55mm @ f/6.3, 30s, ISO-400

The moon was nearly full, so we could only really look at planets and stars.  We also looked at:
  • ·         The Double Cluster
  • ·         Double star Mizar – its twin was very close, but resolvable at not too high of magnification, and pretty bright as well. [Mizar/Alcor is the second star from the end of the handle of the Big Dipper.]
  • ·         M7, Ptolemy's Cluster – very pretty arrangement of stars with the 25 mm eyepiece.  You can see some of the star colors with the telescope, and more colors with a 10 second exposure on the camera.
Single exposure on M7, Ptolemy's Cluster.
Nikon D3100 on my C8 (shorthand for the 8-inch Schmidt-Cassegrain), 5s, ISO-1600

We also set up the camera on my tripod to look down through the eyepiece, and had some success getting higher magnification photos of Saturn this way.  I’ll try using the camera attachment Anton got for me sometime in the future so that I can take long-exposure shots that will move with the telescope.  It’s just really hard to set up.  The photos are still pretty blurry, though.  I now have a 7 Ah lead-acid battery as the power source, and that seems to have solved the problem of the telescope ‘getting lost.’  It performs perfectly all evening now.  Yay!

A rather blurry attempt at Saturn, aiming down through an eyepiece (I didn't specify which one in my original log).
Nikon D3100 on the C8, 30mm @ f/5, 1s, ISO-800




Tuesday, July 28, 2015

#4 - Tuesday, July 28, 2015

The moon was so bright that I barely needed my red headlamp.  It was blinding in the telescope without the neutral density filter, which we quickly put on.  I got some great pictures of the moon.  We also looked at:
  • M6, the Butterfly Cluster – very pretty group of stars, and color is easily visible in the 10-second exposure photos I took.  Finally figured out how to focus the telescope with my camera attached.
  • Altair and its nearby neighbors.  Altair is a pretty bright star that I’ve ended up using several times for alignment.
  • I think we looked at Neptune, but it was difficult to tell whether the bright dot I was looking at was actually Neptune or not.
I also took some 5-10 second exposures of the sky and trees with my camera on its tripod, and the moon was so bright that it looked like day but with stars.  The sky was blue and the trees green.  I even took a picture of my moonshadow.  I finally have a dew shield now for the telescope, and while there was still some dew on the corrector plate by the end of the night, it took much longer than usual.  We still had trouble with the telescope behaving erratically, though, so we didn’t get to look at much that we couldn’t find ourselves.

[I later learned that this seemingly erratic behavior - bad gotos, other issues - was because I was running the NexStar mount off of its internal AA batteries, which it runs down very quickly!]

Daytime with stars??
Nikon D3100, 18mm @ f/4.5, 20s, ISO-1600.







Tuesday, July 21, 2015

#3 - Tuesday, July 21, 2015 - First image through the scope

[I took a group of my friends out to a nearby state park.]
We looked at the Moon through the telescope for the first time, wow what a sight!!  Looking at it when it’s not full is definitely a treat, the shadows increase contrast on the craters and it looks really cool.  I can’t get the whole Moon in a single camera shot, however, when I’m using my camera directly attached to the telescope with my new T-adapter.  With the 32 mm eyepiece, I can see the whole thing in one view.  I put the T-adapter on the 2x Barlow lens to make Saturn bigger, but there was so much moisture in the air that the picture was especially grainy and dim.  It was dark enough though that I got some great pictures of the Milky Way with my camera.  

I suppose this qualifies as my first astrophoto!  It's a single frame, taken on my Nikon D3100, 1/125s, ISO-400.

The aforementioned Milky Way photo I took at the park.  Nikon D3100, 18mm @ f/4.5, 15s, ISO-3200.

Next post: #4 - Tuesday, July 28, 2015


Previous post: #2 - Sunday, July 12, 2015


Table of Contents





Sunday, July 12, 2015

#2 - Sunday, July 12, 2015

It was cloudier than the Clear Sky forecast predicted [Clear Sky is a great astronomer's forecast, although it is only updated once every 12 hours.  http://www.cleardarksky.com], but we could still see some stars in the northern sky.  In the southern sky, there were clouds with nearly constant lightning far away.   The clouds cleared out at around 11 PM.  We looked at Saturn with some higher magnification, which did make it bigger but fuzzier.  We [my friend Anton and I] tried to find some other objects, but the telescope would get near it, and then just keep moving somewhat slowly for a long time.  It also tried to rotate up and over.  So I mostly took long exposure pictures of the sky with my camera.  We were out until almost 2 AM.  

Friday, July 10, 2015

#1 - Friday, July 10, 2015 - First light!

[I was given my first telescope - a Celestron NexStar 8SE - the week prior to my first trip out with it.  It is an 8-inch Schmidt-Cassegrain reflector on a computerized, tracking alt-az mount.]
What a telescope to have as my first!

First trip!  After failing to align the telescope after three or four attempts, we finally figured out that I wasn’t entering the correct time zone.   During alignment, I didn’t have it focused yet, but after we got it aligned, we looked at Saturn, and I brought it into focus, and there it was!  It was so amazing to see, this tiny object hanging in space that you’ve seen pictures of so many times, but somehow seeing it with your own eyes makes it completely real.  Also looked at Pluto, which was just a dot.  [In retrospect, we probably couldn't really distinguish which dot of light it was among the starfield, but given a good alignment, it may have indeed been in the viewfinder.]  Everything was soaking wet by the end of the evening, and the corrector plate was covered in dew.





Thursday, July 9, 2015

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Welcome!
I generally have two types of posts - tutorials and log entries.  Navigating them in the little sidebar Blogger provides can be difficult, especially since the first two years of log entries weren't posted when I created them (I started this blog two years into my hobby), so here is hopefully an easier way.  It runs from newest to oldest.

Also, I have a store on Zazzle!

You can find me on social media as well:
Facebook: www.facebook.com/astronomolly
Instagram: @astronomolly_images (www.instagram.com/astronomolly_images)

Video Tutorials

Introduction to PixInsight: Complete Workflow on NGC 1333

Tutorials

Coming Soon: Planetary Image Processing
Coming Soon: Image Processing 3.0: One-Shot Color Images in PixInsight

Log Entries

2021

2020


2019

#267 - Tuesday, December 31, 2019 - A 2017 Comet in 2019
#266 - Monday, December 30, 2019
#265 - Thursday, December 19, 2019 - Star Wars
#264 - Monday, December 16, 2019
#263 - Sunday, December 15, 2019 - Surprise!
#262 - Saturday, December 14, 2019 - Rain Rain Go Away!
#261 - Sunday, December 8, 2019 - Finally!
#260 - Monday, November 25, 2019 - Some New Targets
#259 - Sunday, November 24, 2019 - Collimation Nation
#258 - Saturday, November 23, 2019 - Growing Pains
#257 - Friday, November 22, 2019 - T-Pointing
#256 - Thursday, November 21, 2019 - Working out the kinks...as usual
#255 - Wednesday, November 20, 2019 - A Special Project
#254 - Monday, November 18, 2019 - First Night with the Paramount MyT
#253 - Sunday, November 17, 2019 - Setting Up the Mighty MyT
2019 Advanced Imaging Conference
#252 - Monday, November 11, 2019 - The Transit of Mercury
#251 - Sunday, November 10, 2019 - California Dreamin'
#250 - Saturday, November 9, 2019 - Meridian Madness
#249 - Wednesday, November 6, 2019 - Catching an Eruptive Nova
#248 - Monday, November 4, 2019 - One Can Only Have So Much Good Luck
#247 - Sunday, November 3, 2019 - Keep On Truckin'
#246 - Saturday, November 2, 2019 - The Problems Continue
#245 - Friday, November 1, 2019 - Lots of Little Problems
#244 - Thursday, October 31, 2019 - A Spooktacular Evening
#243 - Wednesday, October 30, 2019
#242 - Tuesday, October 29, 2019
#241 - Sunday, October 27, 2019 - Collaboration
#240 - Friday, October 25, 2019 - Smoked Out, Day 2
#239 - Thursday, October 24, 2019 - Smoked Out
#238 - Wednesday, October 23, 2019 - More AVX Tweaks
#237 - Tuesday, October 22, 2019
#236 - Monday, October 21, 2019 - Long Exposure
#235 - Sunday, October 20, 2019
#234 - Saturday, October 19, 2019
#233 - Friday, October 18, 2019 - Refinements
#232 - Thursday, October 17, 2019
#231 - Tuesday, October 15, 2019 - Just Another Night
#230 - Friday, October 11, 2019
#229 - Wednesday, October 9, 2019 - Luck of the ISS-ish
#228 - Monday, October 7, 2019 - Focus Pocus
#227 - Sunday, October 6, 2019 - Outreach Again!
#226 - Saturday, October 5, 2019 - Target of Opportunity
#225 - Friday, October 4, 2019 - Odd Happenings
#223 & #224 - Wed & Thu, October 2-3, 2019 - Another Sleepful Night
#222 - Tuesday, October 1, 2019 - Well, It Could've Been Worse
#221 - Monday, September 30, 2019 - I'm Still Up Late Sometimes!
#220 - Sunday, September 29, 2019 - Camera Swap
#219 - Saturday, September 28, 2019 - The Real Party is After Dark
#218 - Wednesday, September 25, 2019 - More Stuff I Need to Fix
#217 - Tuesday, September 24, 2019 - Smooth Sailing
#216 - Monday, September 23, 2019 - Continuous Process Improvement
#215 - Sunday, September 22, 2019 - Unnoteworthy
#214 - Saturday, September 21, 2019 - Computer Swap
#213 - Friday, September 20, 2019 - Routine
#212 - Thursday, September 19, 2019 - New Targets
#211 - Wednesday, September 18, 2019 - Back in Action
#210 - Tuesday, September 10, 2019 - Curse You, Moon!
#209 - Monday, September 9, 2019 - It's All Coming Together
#208 - Sunday, September 8, 2019 - Automation Nation
#207 - Saturday, September 7, 2019 - Chugging Along
#206 - Thursday, September 5, 2019 - Backyardathon
#205 - Tuesday, September 3, 2019 - Working Out the Bugs, Part 2
#204 - Monday, September 2, 2019 - Working Out the Bugs
#203 - Sunday, September 1, 2019 - Handywoman Skills
#202 - Saturday, August 31, 2019 - New Digs!
#201 - Saturday, August 3, 2019 - Final Members Night
#200 - Friday, August 2, 2019 - Outdoor Outreach
#199 - Tuesday, July 23, 2019 - New Scope!
#198 - Wednesday, July 10, 2019 - Last Dark Night of the Atacama
#197 - Tuesday, July 9, 2019 - Shooting with an Astro-DSLR
#196 - Monday, July 8, 2019 - High-Tech Star Hopping
#195 - Sunday, July 7, 2019 - With My Own Eyes
#194 - Saturday, July 6, 2019 - In the Atacama Desert
#193 - Tuesday, July 2, 2019 - Solar Eclipse in Chile
#192 - Sunday, June 30, 2019 - Southern Skies from Mamalluca Observatory
#191 - Sunday, June 29, 2019 - First Peak at the Southern Sky!
#190 - Tuesday, June 25, 2019 - Star Tours
#189 - Tuesday, June 11, 2019 - Jupiter Double-Shadow Transit
#188 - Monday, June 10, 2019 - Finally, Some Outreach!
Texas Star Party 2019 Summary
#187 - Friday, May 3, 2019 - Baggin' Targets: Texas Star Party Night #6
#186 - Wednesday, May 1, 2019 - The Long Night: Texas Star Party Night #4
#184 - Monday, April 29, 2019 - At Last, Some Success: Texas Star Party Night #2
#183 - Sunday, April 28, 2019 - A Perilous Night! Texas Star Party Night #1
#182 - Monday, April 15, 2019 - Pre-Texas Star Party Checkout
#181 - Tuesday, April 2, 2019 - Fuzzy Colors
#180 - Sunday, March 31, 2019 - In like a lion, out like a lamb
#179 - Tuesday, March 26, 2019 - Finally, a little success!
#178 - Saturday, March 23, 2019 - If it's not one thing, it's another
#177 - Monday, March 11, 2019 - Sharing the Love
#176 - Sunday, January 20, 2019 - Lunar Eclipse!
#175 - Saturday, January 5, 2019 - Winter Fun
#174 -Thursday, January 3, 2019 - A Cloudy Start to the New Year

2018

#173 - Tuesday, December 18, 2018 - The Moon and the Library
#172 - Sunday, December 16, 2018 - A Rude Fog
#171 - Monday, December 10, 2018 - Can't Get Lucky Twice
#170 - Sunday, December 9, 2018 - Back After a Long, Cloudy Hiatus
#169 - Saturday, November 10, 2018 - I'm Not Ready for Winterrrrrrr
#168 - Tuesday, November 6, 2018 - Weeknight Warrior
#167 - Monday, October 29, 2018 - Little Green Planets
#166 - Thursday, October 18, 2018 - Winter is Coming
#165 - Sunday, October 7, 2018 - Chasing Clear Skies
#164 - Saturday, October 6, 2018 - Imaging Through Fog & Sog at Hidden Hollow (Night 3)
#163 - Friday, October 5, 2018 - A Foggy Night at Hidden Hollow (and I fixed my mount!!)
#162 - Thursday, October 4, 2018 - First Soggy Night of Hidden Hollow
#161 - Saturday, September 15, 2018 - The Comet and the Supernova
#160 - Thursday, September 13, 2018 - Back to the Borg
#159 - Sunday, September 2, 2018 - Just For Fun
#158 - Saturday, September 1, 2018 - Labor Day Weekend Labors
#157 - Thursday, August 23, 2018 - Back to Basics
#156 - Sunday, August 19, 2018 - Astronomy Merit Badge
#155 - Saturday, August 18, 2018 - Could Somebody Invent Some Darn Cloud Filters Already?
#154 - Tuesday, August 14, 2018 - Passing It On
#153 - Saturday, August 11, 2018 - Failure Just Makes Room for Future Success
#152 - Saturday, August 4, 2018 - Testing the Lumicon Off-Axis Guider
My First Date with PixInsight
#151 - Friday, July 13, 2018 - "Coffee, Enthusiasm, and Sheer Willpower"
#150 - Thursday, July 12, 2018 - Hardcore Astronomer
#149 - Wednesday, July 11, 2018 - Finally, A Little Sleep
#148 - Monday, July 9, 2018 - National Youth Science Camp Night #2
#147 - Sunday, July 8, 2018 - National Youth Science Camp Night #1
#146 - Saturday, July 7, 2018 - Configuration Experimentation
#145 - Friday, July 6, 2018 - A Colorful Black Eye
#144 - Wednesday, June 27, 2018 - Mars in the Wee Hours
#143 - Friday, June 15, 2018 - I'll Take my Chances
#142 - Friday, May 25, 2018 - Dancin' in the moonlight
#141 - Thursday, May 24, 2018 - Finally, some good atmosphere
Texas Star Party 2018 Summary: Walking in the Light of the Stars
#140 - Friday, May 11, 2018 - Sleep Deprivation - Texas Star Party Night #6
#139 - Thursday, May 10, 2018 - I'll Take What I Can Get - Texas Star Party Night #5
#138 - Wednesday, May 9, 2018 - ♫Deep in the daaaaaaark of Texas!♪ Texas Star Party Night #4
#137 - Tuesday, May 8, 2018 - Persist! Texas Star Party Night #3
#136 - Monday, May 7, 2018 - Texas Star Party Night #2
#135 - Sunday, May 6, 2018 - On the Road Again!
#134 - Sunday, April 29, 2018 - Pre-TSP Gear Checkout
#133 - Friday, April 27, 2018 - At the Mercy of the Atmosphere
#132 - Thursday, April 26, 2018 - More library telescope outreach!
#131 - Friday, April 20, 2018 – Astronomy Night with the Brownies
#130 - Thursday, April 19, 2018 – Eye of the Needle (and Utility of the Refrigerator)
#129 - Wednesday, April 11, 2018 - Library Telescope Program
#128 - Thursday, March 15, 2018 - The Clear Skies Call, and I Must Go
#127 - Saturday, March 10th, 2018 - Daylight Saving Time, and Other Tales of Woe
#126 - Friday, March 2, 2018 - Curing Cabin Fever
#125 - February 20th, 2018 - See Stars While Seeing the Stars!