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ETX-70AT Lunar Imaging with iPhone 6s Plus & Revolution Imager;
ISS Pass

Posted: 15 June 2016

Open: Tuesday, 14 June 2016, 1904 MST
Temperature: 88°F
Session: 983
Conditions: Clear

Equipment Used:
AutoStar #494 handset
1.25" 25mm eyepiece
1.25" 26mm eyepiece
1.25" 3X TeleXtender

Revolution Imager
iPhone 6s Plus
D7200 DSLR

Set up the ETX-70AT on the observatory patio for some work with the Revolution Imager:


1937 MST: sunset. ETX ON. Faked the star alignment by accepting the alignment stars as "centered" even though they were not yet visible. As it turned out my initial set up (level, True North pointing) was pretty good. A GOTO the Moon put the Moon in the field-of-view (FOV) of the 25mm eyepiece (14X). Viewed the Moon at 14X and 42X. The Moon did not fill the FOV at either magnification.

Attached the iPhone 6s Plus to the ETX-70A using the Orion SteadyPix Universal Smartphone Telescope Photo Mount for afocal imaging using a 26mm eyepiece (13X). With the iOS Camera app the Moon was overexposed, even when reducing the camera brightness setting. I could have added a Moon Filter but I decided to try using the iOS app NightCap Pro with its expanded camera settings. This is the Moon, afocal 13X with NightCap Pro (ISO 200, 1/2000sec):


Added the 3X TeleXtender (40X). This photo was taken with NightCap Pro (ISO 25, 1/150sec):


1956 MST: ended iPhone afocal lunar imaging.

2000 MST: attached the Revolution Imager at prime focus of the ETX-70AT. This is a screen photograph of the view from the Imager:


Added the 3X TeleXtender and viewed the Moon. Here are some selected screen photos:




Did a GOTO the Moon. Two Jovian moons were visible on the monitor:


2036 MST: removed the Imager and viewed Jupiter, Mars, and Saturn at 42X. Then reattached the Revolution Imager and viewed Saturn, as seen here:


2049 MST: ended working with the ETX and Revolution Imager.

I quickly began preparing to photograph a nice pass of the International Space Station (ISS). I put the D7200 DSLR on a photographic tripod. This is an f/5, 295 seconds, ISO 5000, exposure with an 8mm fisheye lens pointed near the Zenith:


North is at the bottom and west at the left. The bright Moon (top) really made this a difficult shot to get. The stars trailed during the exposure (as expected). The "Big Dipper" is visible below center, just above the ISS trail.

Close: Tuesday, 14 June 2016, 2122 MST
Temperature: 69°F
Session Length: 2h 18m
Conditions: Clear

Later today I plan to post some new information about the Revolution Imager in a review update. Current users will want to check it out.

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