first fumbles
first fumbles

Initial stumbling blocks :-(

Mostly, when perusing ap images we only get to see the images that people are proud of.
On this page you will see some of the horrors that usually end up in the recycle bin!
I think these bad images are useful for diagnosing or confirming some issues that arise when first fumbling with ap.


Out of focus stars

This screenshot shows an image opened in Canon's 'Digital Photo Professional'. You can see the smaller stars have 'holes' in them so that they look like little rings.

I have no idea why the larger stars don't do the same thing.

Magenta cast

Screenshot of an image opened in 'Photivo'. I shot my first night sky images in RAW and this is what I ended up with. The images looked fine on the camera preview but when opened in a RAW editor they were horrible.

This is an unresolved issue. I will seek help from my peers on an astronomy forum.

This issue has now automagically resolved itself!

Condensation or Dew on the lens

It looked like it was getting foggy ..... but it wasn't!

You would think that the wet grass, drenched deck and moisture dribbling down the shed wall would be a dead giveaway that I might get dew on the lens but no .... must have had my stupid hat on that night.

It's a mystery

Sometimes it's a bit hard to say what went wrong.

Wobbly mount

This is a video (14.5 MB) of the Sun through a 80mm refractor captured with a Canon 80d camera.

You can see the effect that a light variable breeze has on the stability of the mount & tripod, in this case the standard mount that is supplied with the Celestron 80 EQ telescope .... equivalent to an EQ2 mount.

This demonstrates why a solid mount is so important in astrophotography. Note the sunspot on the right side of the sun's disc at the 14:30 postion.

Can't connect to mount

I have re-purposed my trusty dual boot notebook, a Medion Akoya E6224 circa 2004 (purchased from Aldi) as part of my astrophotography kit to use in the field. I was able to connect to my mount using ASCOM & Windows 7 OS, but could not connect using Indi & Linux on the same machine. I eventually decided to bypass cables altogether and use a "Shoestring Astronomy" bt2eq6 adaptor hoping to solve the issue once and for all. Still no connection, so I tried connecting with my new desktop (same OS as notebook, Ryzen 3 processor) & found that it had no Bluetooth adaptor. I had a usb bluetooth dongle lying around so I plugged it in and tried connecting to the mount. A single click later and I was connected. Tried the dongle on the notebook and also had an instant connection.

So my problem was that the default bluetooth adaptor in my notebook could connect using Win 7 but not with Linux. Probably a driver issue. With the dongle left in place I now have a reliable serial connection using the Indi control system under Linux.

Focussing an astronomy camera

This is a 'jpg' of a 'fits' image produced by my asi224mc.

I expected an image of Jupiter but managed to image this instead! Goes to show the difference between a 'point & shoot' camera and an industrial video camera! I'm pretty sure this issue is a result of not being able to focus because I do not have the correct 'back focus' distance set up for this camera.