SaratogaSkies Jim Solomon's Astropics


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M65 (Part of the Leo Triplet)

Image Details:

Camera: Canon Digital Rebel (300D)
Mount: Celestron AS-GT
Scope: Celestron C8-N (8" f/5 Newtonian)
Configuration: Prime Focus
Additional Optics: n/a (Prime)
Filter: None
Effective Focal Length: 100mm
Effective Focal Ratio: f/5
Exposure: ~14min @ ISO 800 and 1600
Total Exposure: 0hrs, 14min
Date: 5/8/2004 11:20:54 PM PDT (start)
Location: Saratoga, CA, USA
Acquisition: Manual
Focus: DSLRFocus
Dithering: None
Guiding: None


  • IRIS: Dark subtraction, registration, and stacking
  • JimP: White balance, ASINH stretching
  • Neat Image: noise reduction
  • Photoshop: Levels, cropping, scale, JPG conversion

Image Description:

This was an attempt at capturing the Leo Triplet. By confusing my directions I managed to frame this wrong and capture only M65 (right) and M66 (left). NGC 3628, the third in the Triplet, will have to wait for another day. North is up, though I really wish I would have realized this simple fact at the time. D'oh!!!!

Update 3/18/2005: This is a reprocessed stack of a hodgepodge of frames and exposures ranging from 30sec to 2min at ISO 800 and 1600. Amazingly, IRIS was able to scale, translate, and rotate all of these frames in order to align them, even though their intersection was only a tiny fraction of the entire sensor's range. Way to go IRIS! Obviously, this image needs much more exposure to bring out the faint spiral arms of these galaxies. And, since the framing was all messed up, most of the frames were captured in the "severe coma" portion of the field, which is why the stars show significant signs of coma. But as my first DSO image with the 300D, this ain't too shabby!