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Contains:  M 13, Great Cluster in Hercules, NGC 6205, The star ηHer
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Messier 13 - widefield, 


Messier 13 - widefield

Messier 13 - widefield

Technical card

Resolution: 6982x4506 job: 2671585

RA center: 250.342 degrees

DEC center: 36.436 degrees

Pixel scale: 2.428 arcsec/pixel

Orientation: 108.582 degrees

Field radius: 2.802 degrees

Data source: Backyard


This was a nightmare to process! I decided to use my Nikon D800 for the very first time, because with an object like this, I did not need a modified camera, and besides I wanted to do something different for a change , i.e. get a significantly widefield image on a very familiar, and regularly imaged, object.

But, the light pollution was really bad and I also had someone in the distance somewhere shining out one of those massive lights, that splits into different beams of light, into the night sky! The beams could be seen on many of the subs. Also, out of the subs I took only the last 7 were relatively good - so I wish I had not shut the camera off when I did - and for some inexplicable reason I forgot to put my light pollution filter on!

On top of that, the files were so massive that my poor laptop was in agony trying to process the data, and then Pixinsight created an awful final image - I had loaded up a lot more flats than normal, to try and counteract these issues, but I think it was a bit much for it. I then ran it through Deep Sky Stacker and that crashed. I then, the following day, tried to run it through DSS again, and this time it worked! I was really pleased with the result it gave too.

The gradients unsurprisingly were very bad, and so part of the field of view had to be cropped away... But somehow I was able to remove most of them and all in all I am really pleased with the image, with the cluster just hovering there in space, with lots of stars around it for context.

I used 49 subs each at 4 minutes long, using my unmodified Nikon D800, at ISO 400, through my 3" triplet refractor. I am also pleased to have been able to image the very distant galaxy right near the cluster, IC 4617, and still capture the 'propeller' and other structural aspects of the core, which considering how small these are on the sensor, is pleasing. These can be seen more easily in the full size version of this. I hope you enjoy the image...



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Messier 13 - widefield,