Whirlpool Galaxy – Color

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The subexposures for this stacked image were taken with LRGB filters.  The total exposure time was about 25 hours with the Celestron 11 inch telescope.

From Wikipedia:

“The Whirlpool Galaxy, also known as Messier 51a, M51a, or NGC 5194, is an interacting grand-design spiral galaxy with a Seyfert 2 active galactic nucleus in the constellation Canes Venatici. It was the first galaxy to be classified as a spiral galaxy. Recently it was estimated to be 23 ± 4 million light-years from the Milky Way, but different methods yield distances between 15 and 35 million light-years. Messier 51 is one of the best known galaxies in the sky. The galaxy and its companion, NGC 5195, are easily observed by amateur astronomers, and the two galaxies may even be seen with binoculars. The Whirlpool Galaxy is also a popular target for professional astronomers, who study it to further understand galaxy structure (particularly structure associated with the spiral arms) and galaxy interactions.”

Solar 05/23/2016

Both images were imaged with a Lunt 80mm solar scope and an Imaging Source camera at 30 FPS. The first image was magnified an additional 2.5x with a Barlow lens. Ten thousand images were taken in each case and the best 20% were stacked. The images were captured with IC Capture, stacked in Autostakkert, sharpened in Registax, and then processed in Photoshop.

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Mercury Transit

All of the images were taken with an 80mm Lunt Solar Telescope and an Imaging Source video camera. The image at the bottom was a composite of 25 of the best images out of 100 and had no further magnification. The second image was a composite of 50 of the best images out of 200 and was magnified 5x with a Televue Barlow. The top image was magnified 5x with Televue Barlow and involved 50 stacked images out of 200.

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