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Old 07-04-2024, 10:06 PM
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First light for 16 inch RCOS

This is an official first light image of NGC5128 taken with the 16" RCOS at Swan Reach Imaging.

Over the last couple of months I have been sorting issues with the system. Some minor, some needed more work. There has been quite a bit of tweaking to get things working in the modern age. The software for RCOS scopes is painfully old but can be manipulated to work with NINA. At present we still need to resolve the rotator connection to NINA (or more properly for it to rotate under NINA's direction as it does connect) but all other functions are commanded by NINA with the Advanced Sequencer.

The image was processed in CCDstack2, Pixinsight and Photoshop CS6.

Resolution is pretty good given that we are located at 63 meters above sea level. Seeing has been average for the last few months too. I am tempted to see if I can fit the SBIG AOX into the guiding solution to assist in the production of sharper data.

Click here for the larger image.
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Old 08-04-2024, 08:31 AM
Mickoid (Michael)
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Despite the average seeing, the large scope has resolved the detail well Paul, that's a great start to many more fine images to come from the 16" RCOS.
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Old 08-04-2024, 08:46 AM
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Looks pretty reasonable, Cen A rarely fails to please

Mike
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Old 08-04-2024, 05:02 PM
Dave882 (David)
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Thatís a wonderful first light! Wonderful resolution. Looking forward to many more images from this setup!!
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Old 08-04-2024, 05:33 PM
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Imaging at that sort of focal length needs so much to go right and nothing
to go wrong. Clearly the case here.

No high hill required, just great technique.

A beautiful result
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Old 09-04-2024, 08:25 AM
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Ryderscope (Rodney)
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Great work in getting up close and personal to Centaurus A
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Old 10-04-2024, 01:35 PM
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WOW!

Very nice, Paul!
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Old 11-04-2024, 07:23 PM
TrevorW
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I like that
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Old 12-04-2024, 10:42 AM
Startrek (Martin)
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Spectacular Centaurus A
The resolution is astonishing but then again what a piece of kit $$$. As PW mentioned you have to know how to tune this monster to maximise its capabilities regardless of atmospheric conditions
Thanks for posting
Martin
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Old 13-04-2024, 10:53 AM
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Thanks everyone for the comments.

Peter, I reckon at altitude it would improve the detail sharpness, but probably not worth the cost differential, especially the cost in Chile. Tweaking out the system has been a little challenging as every little error shows up as a big error at that focal length.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Startrek View Post
Spectacular Centaurus A
The resolution is astonishing but then again what a piece of kit $$$. As PW mentioned you have to know how to tune this monster to maximise its capabilities regardless of atmospheric conditions
Thanks for posting
Martin
Actually the cost was not so bad, a mere fraction of what this scope would have cost when new. I am the third or fourth owner and it does have a chip on the primary but it's abilities have been barely diminished from what I can tell. When the seeing is on, the detail is pretty sharp on each sub. When the seeing is off, it looks quite soft, as I would expect from a system of this calibre.
In regard to the tuning I have drawn on my many years of experience and advice from those who own or have owned these scopes to get it to perform well in an automated way. Like I said though there are few more issues that need to be resolved prior to it being put up for rent. I imagine it will be quite popular when we do rent it.
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Old 17-04-2024, 08:32 PM
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Great pic Paul,
it is a little soft but it's still better than 90% of the pics I've seen
and far better than anything I ever did.

cheers
Allan
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Old 19-04-2024, 01:04 PM
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wasyoungonce (Brendan)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul Haese View Post
This is an official first light image of NGC5128 taken with the 16" RCOS at Swan Reach Imaging. .

Wow.....capturing the relativistic jets "top left". Of course this link to them is upside down wrt southern Pretty hard to capture them!


Well done
Bren
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