Fall '07 Astro 9A/B/C Student Photo Gallery

This semester we were graced with pretty good weather, an good group, and Comet Holmes - the brightest dark-sky comet in a decade.

Open Cluster M11 in Scutum. Sept 19. I shot this one. 11 seconds only! A simple 'grab' with the ST2000XCM on the 10" LX200 alt/az mounted. Very low signal/noise doctored with Photoshop levels, enhanced saturation, AstroTools 3x 'make stars smaller', 'space noise reduction'. Basically, a first test of the alt/az for shooting clusters.

Gamma Cygni Nebula Oct 4. Fred shot this 3x5 stack of the Gamma Cygni nebular region from Cabrillo Observatory. Heavy processing in Photoshop CS2 brought out the faint nebula against the light pollution of Aptos.

M27 The Dumbell Nebula - Nov 14. Fred shot this 3x5min stack from Cabrillo under a cresent moon and with the nebula into the west, over the lights of Santa Cruz. The nebula is small and so there's lots of cropping here. Nice!

M22 - Oct 10. Abbey took this 2x5min stack while the cluster barely cleared the redwoods on the ridge. Low altitude and poor seeing made for big stars. The color was re-balanced to de-redden it.

The Double Cluster in Perseus, Oct 10. Jimmy took this 5 minute shot of the brightest star cluster in the Fall sky. The red giants stand out from the blue main sequence stars nicely. No cropping.

The Dumbell Nebula Oct 3 - Tyler's 3x5min stack on a perfect night with good seeing; important since its pretty small for our image scale.

The Veil Nebula, Oct 10 - A tough challenge for Sakaya in Cabrillo's bright skies. This 3x5min stack had the sky brightness almost at the level of the nebula, hence the darkness of the final image.


Everyone got a chance to frame and photo the moon on Sept 20 through the 8" Meade scope. A snapshot of course, even for the ST2000XCM. Not guiding necessary, but the scope was roughly polar aligned and turned on.

The Moon. I did this one, an experiemental canvas for exploring what Photoshop can do. I tried lots; including the shadow/highlight adjustment for the first time. The seeing was poor and the moon low in the sky, so I did a ton of variants of 'sharpen'.

Comet Holmes - Fred Miles' stacked this set. Good balance of light and dark areas.

The Orion Nebula - Fred got this shot of the Orion Nebula just after it rose above the Hort building and trees. Careful processing made for a remarkable result

The Moon - Fred's version of the first quarter moon. Very nice!