Hemisphere:  Southern  ·  Constellation: Orion (Ori)  ·  Contains:  41 the01 Ori  ·  42 c Ori  ·  43 the02 Ori  ·  44 iot Ori  ·  45 Ori  ·  De Mairan's nebula  ·  Great Orion Nebula  ·  Hatysa  ·  Lower Sword  ·  M 42  ·  M 43  ·  M43  ·  Mairan's Nebula  ·  NGC 1973  ·  NGC 1975  ·  NGC 1976  ·  NGC 1977  ·  NGC 1980  ·  NGC 1982  ·  NGC1973  ·  NGC1975  ·  NGC1977  ·  NGC1980  ·  Orion Nebula  ·  PGC3081010  ·  Sh2-279  ·  Sh2-281  ·  The star 42Ori  ·  The star 45Ori  ·  The star θ1Ori  ·  And 4 more.
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Orion Nebula - First Light with new QHY268c, Celestron Motor Focus, N.I.N.A., multistar guiding with PHD2, 



    
        

            Alan Brunelle
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Orion Nebula - First Light with new QHY268c, Celestron Motor Focus, N.I.N.A., multistar guiding with PHD2

Getting plate-solving status, please wait...
Orion Nebula - First Light with new QHY268c, Celestron Motor Focus, N.I.N.A., multistar guiding with PHD2, 



    
        

            Alan Brunelle
Powered byPixInsight

Orion Nebula - First Light with new QHY268c, Celestron Motor Focus, N.I.N.A., multistar guiding with PHD2

Imaging telescopes or lenses: Celestron RASA 11

Imaging cameras: QHYCCD QHY268c

Mounts: Celestron CGX-L

Guiding telescopes or lenses: Agena Astro Finder Scope

Guiding cameras: ZWO ASI 120 MM Mini

Software: Nighttime Imaging 'N' Astronomy  ·  Celestron CPWI Telescope Control  ·  Pleiades Astrophoto PixInisight 1.8 Ripley (x64)  ·  Cartes du ciel  ·  PHD2

Filters: Optolong L-Pro 2"

Accessory: Celestron Motor Focuser  ·  Baader Planetarium RASA 11 UFC system with 2" filter slider


Dates:March 1, 2021

Frames: 7x100" (11' 40")

Integration: 11' 40"

Avg. Moon age: 17.13 days

Avg. Moon phase: 93.78%


Astrometry.net job: 4269487

RA center: 5h 35' 4"

DEC center: -5° 27' 37"

Pixel scale: 1.255 arcsec/pixel

Orientation: -148.783 degrees

Field radius: 1.310 degrees


Resolution: 6252x4176

Data source: Backyard

Description

Two images submitted as first light examples for some new gear and software that I just incorporated into my setup. This is what happens with 5 months of no clear skies. Fortunately, I have a window that opened last night and with luck, again tonight. Wish me luck! Before I discuss the new camera, I will briefly mention that I have also decided to adopt N.I.N.A., because I had time to play with it and I am very satisfied how well it integrates everything. There are some other advantages for me, but I won't detail them here. Also, I decided, once again, to try adding the Celestron focus motor and this time it worked. This has now allowed me to drastically reduce the cabling on my rig and helps me do my backyard work remotely (sort of).

So the camera. In my off time, I have decided to replace my two year old ZWO asi071mc pro with an identically sized sensor OSC camera, the QHY268c. The new camera is true 16bit, smaller pixel (3.76uM), back illuminated, very deep well, and multiple exposure modes that I hoped to put to the test here with these two images. Still, I hope to someday get a full-frame mono camera, but that can wait. Since I run an F2.2 system, I will always want an OSC. I like that fact that the Bayer layer is invisible to NIR and IR, so it can serve as my IR "mono camera" in the short term.

One of the coolest things about the QH268 cameras (mono and OSC) is that they have 4 different imaging modes. Of these, 3 seem to be particularly useful. They allow for choices of gain and offset (of course), but also options to trade off read noise and well depth along with bit depth. In the examples I give here I calculated that mode 3, Extended Well Depth, would be an ideal setting for objects that have a crazy dynamic range when used at gain 0, while yielding a deep well of about 90k e- along with the full bit depth and reduced noise levels. I tried this on the Orion Nebula, with attention as to how this camera/mode handled the very bright stars and hot Trapezium region.

I had a tight window of opportunity, so shot 7, 100sec subs with my RASA11. I calibrated these with bias and darks, debayered and stacked. I also did a simple TGV denoise and photometric color calibration. The large crop of the Trapezium region is only lightly stretched. The full frame image is stretched to approach what is typically displayed for the nebula. I did cut the low end to darken the blackpoint/background, but I did not do any masked stretches or other methods to tease out the darker nebula that are in fact throughout the frame.

There are some stars that are fully saturated or nearly so. Also not focused as nicely as I would like. I will need to dial in the autofocus, which is also new. That aside, I have to say that I am happy with the dynamic range that I have captured. In particular, when I compare this data to my Orion Nebula with my asi071, while I am very happy with that image, the data are simply fully saturated in the local Trapezium region and I cannot get the details that I am seeing with this data. If and when I come back to this target, I will likely use this mode, shorten the sub length and try to collect many more subs.

Comments

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  • Final
    Orion Nebula - First Light with new QHY268c, Celestron Motor Focus, N.I.N.A., multistar guiding with PHD2, 



    
        

            Alan Brunelle
    Original
  • Orion Nebula - First Light with new QHY268c, Celestron Motor Focus, N.I.N.A., multistar guiding with PHD2, 



    
        

            Alan Brunelle
    B

B

Description: This is the full frame image. Again, preprocessed 7 subs with bias and darks, and only simple post processing and stretch to make the point.

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Orion Nebula - First Light with new QHY268c, Celestron Motor Focus, N.I.N.A., multistar guiding with PHD2, 



    
        

            Alan Brunelle