Monday, February 23, 2009

More on Comet Lulin

Tuesday morning comet Lulin will pass just 2 degrees from Saturn in the sky. I'm kind of excited to see what kind of images those lucky enough to have clear skies for that event will come up with.
I had a chance to view and image Lulin Friday night. We were out until about 2am despite the somewhat hazy skies and 28 degree temperatures. I took this image of the comet - with special thanks to Steve on the CCD-Newastro Yahoogroup for tweaking my image a bit. I had some really ugly dust blobs that didn't process out since I must have twisted the camera accidentally when I took the flat-field images. Didn't line up very well then. Steve used the Photoshop "heal' tool to fixe that. I'll give that a try myself and play with it some more and see if I can improve the colors some more in this shot.
There is hope for us in Seattle. Live comet images of the Saturn/Lulin conjunction will be availible on the Coca Cola Space Science Center web page. I thought Coca Cola was only good for keeping us late night guys up with a caffeine and sugar high? I guess the do sponsor some cool astronomy stuff too!
Also took this image of the Rosette Nebula while waiting for the comet to get higher in the sky. It's H-alpha with 10 exposures at 800 ISO at 7 minutes each.

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