If you need to hire high-power high-speed Xenon flashguns for your next photo-assignment then check Xenon Flash out
Jun 06 2015
Jun 05 2015
A couple of nights ago with a full Moon I took some Arcturus data with the 3 x Sky 90s.
I combined the recent data with some taken a while back and came up with this result
May 31 2015
I don’t have enough spare time to replicate posts on Astronomy forums and on my New Forest Observatory web site.
So, if you want to see the latest images or the latest developments at the New Forest Observatory, from today onwards you will only see these on this site.
I can prove that we live in a Matrix Universe. Trouble is – if I explain my proof the program will terminate.
Here is a CCDInspector result from one of the 200mm lenses with an M26C Trius OSC CCD from last night:
Last night I used the two Canon 200mm lenses and M26C Trius OSC CCDs to image the left hand half of Corona Borealis – the idea eventually to make a 2-frame mosaic showing the whole of the constellation. When I processed the image this morning I was very surprised to see that R Coronae Borealis was blazing away (relatively speaking) at magnitude 8. Why was this such a surprise? Because when I imaged the same star in August 2013 with the 3 x Sky 90s for quite some time I was really disappointed to find that I could hardly see the thing. Looking it up on Wikipedia I saw that it was not only at its minimum, but it had also been down there for the longest period in its (recorded) history. So at that point I forgot all about R Coronae Borealis – until this morning
The New Forest Observatory is run by Prof. Greg Parker from Brockenhurst in Hampshire. Do not be misled or confused by others using a similar name.
May 23 2015
I have reproduced below an e-mail conversation from a rather persistent fellow representing a very well known Publisher. For obvious reasons the Publisher’s name is crossed out as is the guy I’m having the conversation with – but all the same I think you’ll get the gist of it.
Urgent Image Request Dear Sir,
I am XXXXXX XXXXX, Picture Researcher with XXXX.
XXXX publishers (part of the XXXXXX Group) would like to use an image of Gamma Cas on one of our spreads of our educational children’s book XXXXXXX.
We have really liked your image on NASA website http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap091224.html. It would be great if you could give us the permission to use the image in our upcoming book.
XXXX always clears images for world, all language, all edition rights including E-books and Digital Spinnoffs of this book.
We have a very tight schedule so it would be great if you could get back to us on this as soon as possible.
Thanks and Regards
My New Forest Observatory http://www.newforestobservatory.com/ does provide deep-sky images, non-exclusively for publication purposes. The images are not available for free.
Prof. Greg Parker
Re: Urgent Image Request Thanks a lot for your urgent reply but we are interested in using the image in the link I have provided earlier. If you can provide us that image at A4 size at 300dpi we are happy to pay you 20GBP as this is what we have been paying to the well known agencies we are registered with.
We will also give you a credit in the book. I hope you will give us a chance to work with you and agree to our rights and rates.
Also, we might get in touch with you again for other images we like from your collection.
Thanks and Regards
Thank you – I understand what image you require, it is the one I provided from the NFO to APOD.
Your rate I’m afraid is insufficient for an A4 size at 300 DPI. Thank you very much for your interest.
Prof. Greg Parker
We wish to use the image at 1/4th size. It is not the final rate we can surely negotiate the prices. This is the rate we have been paying to our agencies. Please let me know what rate you want to give us the image at if it suits our budget we can use the image. The size of the book is really small and we have a really low budget on this project.
Thanks and Regards
Books are always “really small” and budgets are always “very low” but the images that are requested take many hours to acquire with very expensive equipment and very expensive programs (and computers) – so it looks like we will always have an impass here
Yesterday I sold a photomicroscopy image (about half the size of the image you are requesting) to Harvard Medical School for £196. They considered this a “low” budget. I think you can see that you will not be able to afford my image for your book, but thank you for your interest.
Prof. Greg Parker
And finally, thank goodness, this totally pointless conversation mercifully came to an end.
Please can I ask you – if you want some “free” or “cheapo” deep-sky images, to kindly go elsewhere
May 22 2015
Last night I managed to finish off setting up the 2 x Canon 200mm prime lenses and their M26C Trius OSC CCDs. The new Trius just needed a tiny tweak to get it perfectly flat to the imaging train. That took about an hour – then I was off imaging. I tell you – this setup is the business. Massive FOV at reasonable sampling and a fast f#3.8 optical system with no star-spikes from the lenses. I am going to be making a great deal of use of this rig every clear night we get
It was a beautiful clear Moonless night last night (we don’t get very many of those in a year) and instead of imaging I was setting up These things unfortunately need to be done, shame it was under almost perfect conditions though. Never mind. So I was working on the two Canon 200mm lenses and their Trius M26C cameras last night. Both lenses are now aligned with the Sky 90s so everything on the megawasp array is pointing to exactly the same point in space – great. Next was focus training. Tom How not only built a second autofocuser unit for the second 200mm lens, he also swapped out the original stepper motor I had for one with much finer steps. The result is that I now get great V-curves from both lenses and I only now need to click on “Focus” in FocusMax for both lenses to come to a very good focus. Excellent!! So the last job to do is to flatten the new Trius M26C to the optical train using CCDInspector. It’s now 12:30 a.m. CCDInspector running, camera downloading images for inspection – yes it is a little bit out (the other 200mm lens and M26C is almost perfectly flattened) so I just need the Allen keys to adjust the second camera. I can’t see them. They aren’t where I usually leave them. There’s been a big tidy up in the observatory especially as there is now yet another computer in there (making 5 in all) and I know I put them somewhere safe and obvious – but I can’t see them. O.K. it’s 1:00 a.m. now and I’m just going to break something if I carry on, so I shut down for the night and come indoors. Brushing my teeth before bed, of course, I remember where the Allen keys are – I put them in a clear plastic bag and stuck them to the side of the pier where they would be obvious!! Go out this morning and check – yep of course that’s where they are. Very annoying I didn’t get EVERYTHING set up and ready to go for the next rare, clear, night – but that’s the nature of this game. Pure frustration and annoyance for 360 nights of the year for the joy of 5 nights of great imaging.