Sunspot group 2665 – July 11, 2017

Posted in ASTRO, Uncategorized on July 11, 2017 by maxpho

After some time (ages actually) of “astro-inactivity” I’m slowly trying to get back at it…

After the lucky ISS transit in the morning, I’ve spared two hours for some solar imaging. A lovely giant was present on the Sun, so a few quick shots were obligatory 🙂

The setup: TS APO 114mm, F/7, with the ASI 174MM camera. The Herschel wedge for White Light, and the Quark Chromosphere for H-alpha. Good seeing.

A comparison shot:

AR 2665.jpg

The White Light:

AR 2665 WL.jpg

Some H-alpha:

AR 2665 H ALPHA BW 7 19 UT.jpg

AR 2665 H ALPHA COLOR 7 19 UT.jpg

SMALL PROM.jpg

ISS and a sunspot

Posted in ASTRO, Uncategorized on July 11, 2017 by maxpho

A lucky transit of the ISS occurred over my home. Only a fast setup of the astro gear was required for this event.

The large AR 2665 sunspot group added the already interesting view.

Equipment: 127mm Maksutov, full aperture solar filter, H-alpha 35nm filter, ASI 174 MM camera.

iss bw maximilian july 11.jpg

iss color maximilian july 11.jpg

Hyles hippophaes – May 12, 2017

Posted in Specii rare on May 12, 2017 by maxpho

After a very long period of inactivity on this blog, I’m finally posting some new shots. Not “astro” ones, but Nature-related ones.

The following shots are of a hawk moth (Fam. Sphingidae), Hyles hippophaes (Esper, 1789). This species is threatened by human activity, as many other insect species. In Romania it occurs mainly in Dobrogea, but can occasionally be found further to the west. 

The larva was found in August 2016, and the adult emerged in May 2017. The moth is active at night, and is attracted to artificial light.

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Jupiter in March 2017

Posted in ASTRO on April 7, 2017 by maxpho

These are my only two shots of Jupiter this year. At least for now. The opposition is occurring these days, but the weather these days and the low altitude of the planet are both unfavorable for a good imaging session.

Jupiter March 2017.jpg

Solar Eruption – April 3, 2017

Posted in ASTRO on April 3, 2017 by maxpho

A lovely session with the Sun today, both in H-alpha and in white-light. Two large and very active sunspot groups are still visible, one of which (named 2644) released a small eruption just as I was acquiring images.

Equipment: TS 115mm F/7 Refractor, Quark H-alpha filter, ASI 174MM, 700/2500 frames. Seeing 6/10.

flare april 3.jpg

April 3 flare.jpg

A comparison of the white light view and the H-alpha one:

H ALPHA VS WHITE LIGHT.jpg

A short animation spanning 27 minutes, showing the evolution of the small eruption and the plasma traveling along the magnetic field lines:

eruption april 3.gif

A filmstrip from the above animation:

evolution.jpg

And an image of AR 2645, the largest of the two sunspot groups visible on the Sun these days:

ar 2645 april 3.jpg

Markarian’s Chain – April 1, 2017

Posted in ASTRO on April 2, 2017 by maxpho

This is one shot I was planning to acquire for some time now. It shows some superbly aligned galaxies from the Virgo galaxy cluster. More about it here.

The image was acquired under rather dark skies near Runcu Stone.

Markarian's Chain.jpg

And some identified objects:

NAMES.jpg

ISS over the Moon – April 2, 2017

Posted in ASTRO on April 2, 2017 by maxpho

My first transit of the ISS over a celestial body for 2017. The celestial body this time was our Moon. I’ve observed this transit together with my wife and a few other enthusiasts under a very transparent sky, with the Sun still hanging above the western horizon at the time of the transit. As for almost all these events, I had some issues with the acquisition, but the end result shows the shape of the Space Station nicely. Equipment: 115mm F/7 APO Refractor, 2.5x Powermate, ASI 174MM with UV/IR cut filter.

One crop:

ISS OVER THE MOON.jpg

And a three-frame sequence:

ISS SEQUENCE.jpg

And a better processed image:

ISS around the Moon.jpg