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Old 17-09-2012, 11:03 AM
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pvelez (Pete)
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Solar imaging - where to start?

Hi team

I've invested in a Lunt 80mm solar scope with B180 Ha filter. I have an Atik Titan camera that can take shots at 0.001s. The PMX works a treat.

So where do I go from here? I'm looking for any websites that provide an idiot's guide to solar imaging and processing. Something that addresses basic issues such as:

1. When to image - midday when the sun is high? Early morning where there is less variation in seeing?

2. How to focus efficiently - do I focus with the focusser and then play with the etalon? Is there some clever way to tighten up the focus?

3. How many expsoures should I be taking? Is Registax the best way to align, stack and pre-process?

4. Do I calibrate with darks?

Rather that bore everyone silly, I'm happy to do my own research - but if there is a good introductory site you can point to, I'd appreciate it

Pete
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Old 17-09-2012, 11:31 AM
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Merlin66 (Ken)
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Pete,
head over to the Solar Chat forum...all the answers are there....
http://solarchat.solarastronomy.org/index.php/en/

Quick answers:
1. Early morning gives the steadiest seeing
2. Yes. No easy way...trial and plenty of practise...
3. As many exposures as you can! Autostakker2 seems to be better for solar..
4. No darks but you may need flats to correct gradients...
(Interested...what are you doing with the LISA???)
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Old 17-09-2012, 12:42 PM
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pvelez (Pete)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Merlin66 View Post
(Interested...what are you doing with the LISA???)

Thanks Ken - thats very helpful. I'll do some study on this.

At the moment the LISA is sitting quietly in my study. I had a heavy run with it in April/May when trying to assess redshift for some quasars for an SAO Project last semester. Managed fine with 3C-273 as its so bright but struggled with a second target. I was using an EQ6 which wasn't quite up to the task. So after finishing the project, I decided to give it a break.

Since then I've acquired a PMX (a beautiful thing), have trained myself Pixinsight and CCD Autopilot and spent what feels like weeks trying to solve a colour gradient issue that wasn't even there.

After what seemed like endless frustration seeing clear blue skies but cloudy nights and looking at other solar images - I opted for a solar scope.

I expect to dust the LISA off in a few weeks. I still have an RC8 sitting on the mount and that works well with the LISA with a focal reducer. Terry's work keeps me wanting to get back to it. If it wasn't such a pain to set up, I'd be out with it more often.

Pete
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Old 17-09-2012, 01:20 PM
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Merlin66 (Ken)
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Yes, I had similar problems with spectroscopes and cameras....bit the bullet and mounted the ATik314L on the spectroscope and the spectroscope on the C11, on the NEQ6pro - no more moving of equipment. They just all stay together......
Look forward to seeing some of your LISA results.
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