Hemisphere:  Northern  ·  Contains:  IC 342  ·  IC342
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IC 342, LRGB, 6 Nov 2019, 


            David Dearden
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IC 342, LRGB, 6 Nov 2019

Imaging telescopes or lenses: Astro-Tech AT8IN

Imaging cameras: ZWO ASI1600MM-Cool

Mounts: Skywatcher NEQ-6 Pro Synscan

Guiding telescopes or lenses: Astro-Tech AT8IN

Guiding cameras: ZWO AS120MM-Mini

Focal reducers: High Point Scientific Coma Corrector Photo & Visual For Netwonian Telescopes 2"

Software: DeepSkyStacker  ·  Silicon Fields StarTools 1.3  ·  Noel Carboni's Astro Tools for PhotoShop  ·  AstroPlanner  ·  PHD2 Guiding  ·  Sequence Generator Pro  ·  EQASCOM  ·  photoshop

Filters: ZWO Red 31 mm  ·  ZWO Luminance 31 mm  ·  ZWO Green 31 mm  ·  ZWO Blue 31 mm

Accessory: Orion Thin Off Axis Guider (TOAG)  ·  Robert Brown's Arduino ASCOM Focuser Pro DIY  ·  ZWO EFW filter wheel

Dates:Nov. 4, 2019Nov. 5, 2019Nov. 6, 2019

ZWO Blue 31 mm: 20x180" (gain: 139.00) -20C bin 1x1
ZWO Blue 31 mm: 20x180" (gain: 19.00) -20C bin 1x1
ZWO Green 31 mm: 40x180" (gain: 139.00) -20C bin 1x1
ZWO Luminance 31 mm: 160x180" (gain: 139.00) -20C bin 1x1
ZWO Red 31 mm: 40x180" (gain: 139.00) -20C bin 1x1

Integration: 14.0 hours

Avg. Moon age: 8.34 days

Avg. Moon phase: 59.97%

Bortle Dark-Sky Scale: 5.00

Astrometry.net job: 3044178

RA center: 3h 46' 53"

DEC center: +68° 5' 31"

Pixel scale: 1.718 arcsec/pixel

Orientation: 2.712 degrees

Field radius: 0.692 degrees

Resolution: 2298x1770

Locations: Mapleton Lateral Observatory, Mapleton, Utah, United States

Data source: Backyard


10.7 ± 0.9 MLy

After a long gap in opportunities to image (this is the first since late August), I finally had a coincidence of clear weather with having time to get my gear out. The session got off to a slow start because the focuser was badly misbehaving. First, after a lot of messing around I found a broken wire leading to the stepper motor. Fixed that, but then a new problem emerged. Unless the tension is set just right, the focuser won’t move both directions, and the tension was not just right. Eventually I gave up on autofocus and just set the focus manually. I think this galaxy is a bit under appreciated as a beautiful target; it has certainly been under appreciated by me because the last time I tried it was 5 years ago. It’s a nice size for my optics. The galaxy’s core is much brighter than the arms, which have quite low surface brightness. Their relative dimness is obscured after all the stretching I did in processing. I think this image is far better than my 2014 effort.

Date: 4-6 Nov 2019
Subject: IC 342, sometimes called “The Hidden Galaxy” because it is obscured by Milky Way dust
Scope: AT8IN+High Point Scientific Coma Corrector
Filters: ZWO 31 mm diameter unmounted 7 nm Hα, OIII
Mount: EQ-6 (EQMOD 2.000j)+PEC
Guiding: Orion Thin Off-axis Guider + ASI120MM-mini +PHD 2.6.6 (Win 10 ASCOM)
Camera: ASI1600MM-Cool, -20 °C, Gain 139 Offset 21
Acquisition: Sequence Generator Pro
Exposure: 160x180 L, 40x180 R, 40x180 G, 40x180 B
Stacking: Deep Sky Stacker 4.2.2 (64-bit) dark+flat+bias, κ-σ stacking with κ = 1.5.
Processing: StarTools 1.6.380: Combined R, G, & B. Software binned 2x2, cropped, wiped, developed, HDR “hard” optimized, used the color module, and untrack denoised. Separately processed L in StarTools: binned 2x2, cropped, developed, HDR “hard” optimized, deconvoluted and untracked denoised. Combined L with RGB in Photoshop. Small adjustments with levels, deep space noise reduction, and space noise reduction. AstroFrame.



David Dearden
License: None (All rights reserved)

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IC 342, LRGB, 6 Nov 2019, 


            David Dearden