The Moon

The Moon was at about first quarter when I captured this image.  There are a lot of firsts in this image when capturing as I discuss below.

Moon, 22 Dec 2020

First up, this is the first time I used the QHY268C for planetary photography in video mode.  Before now, I always used this camera in long exposure mode.  I think the camera works very well and when I cropped the capture area down to 1600×1200 from its native 6000×4000, I was capturing16fps in Sharpcap, which is quite reasonable.

Secondly, this is the first time I used my Takahashi FSQ85 as a planetary/lunar scope.    I think it worked our pretty well.  I would normally have moved the camera over to the TEC140 or even the C925 SCT scope, however, I do not yuet have the adapters for the QHY268C to do that just yet.

Technical Details

As mentioned, imaged with FSQ85 and QHY268C.  I used Lakeside motorfocus and captured 2000 frames in Sharpcap – another first use of this software (excellent) and utilised the best 35% of the frames in Autostakkert.

I used Photoshop to process the outputr from Autostakkert.  Try as I might, and despite colour correction, I still think there is a slight green tinge to The Moon in this image so I will experiment with some different processing techniques.

EDIT:  I am leaving the image as is but the reason for the green tinge is because I did not equalise the RGB channel intensities properly.  There are several ways to achieve this.  You can use linear fit in PixInsight and use the weakest median channel as the master with which to equalise the other two channels.  Or, again with PixInsight, you could combine the RGB with channel combination with the channel intensities as they emerge from the stacking program and then do a colour combination to equalise the three channels.  Or, you could use autocolour in Photoshop to achieve the colour calibration.  Actually, there is a fourth way too, bu using Helmut Bornemann’s autocolour script in PixInsight.


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