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Quasar CTA 102, Galaxies, Bubble & Ring Nebulae

Posted: 30 September 2019

Saturday, 28 September 2019, was mostly clear until sunset, when there were just enough clouds to make going out to the observatory unproductive. Sunday, 29 September, dawned clear and stayed clear.

Open: Sunday, 29 September 2019, 2023 MST
Temperature: 74°F
Session: 1386
Conditions: Clear

Equipment Used:
12" f/8 LX600 w/StarLock
2" 24mm UWA eyepiece
Focal Reducer


2028 MST: LX600 ON, StarLock OFF, High Precision OFF.

Viewed Jupiter and four moons, followed by Saturn and four moons, 102X.

Slewed to NGC7305 to check seeing conditions for StarLock autoguiding. Seeing was OK for DSO imaging.

Mounted the D850 DSLR at prime focus + focal reducer, focused on the star Altair, and locked the 12" primary mirror.

2043 MST: High Precision ON. Slewed back to NGC7305 (galaxy).

2045 MST: StarLock ON.

This StarLock autoguided, 5 minutes, ISO 6400, White Balance 4550K, image (cropped) shows Quasar CTA 102 (8 billion light years distant) and NGC7305:


Removed the focal reducer and mounted the D850 at prime focus, focused on Altair, locked the mirror. I then resumed galaxy imaging for my Extragalactic Supernova Project, which had been delayed by travel and cloudy nights. Imaged NGC6503 and NGC6946, StarLock autoguided, 5 minutes, ISO 6400, White Balance 4550K, cropped:



No supernova detected in either image.

Then slewed to NGC7635 (Bubble Nebula) in the constellation of Cassiopeia for this StarLock autoguided, 5 minutes, ISO 6400, White Balance 4550K, cropped image:


2156 MST: High Precision OFF.

SYNCed the AutoStar on the star Vega. This is M57 (Ring Nebula), StarLock autoguided, 30 seconds, ISO 5000, White Balance 4550K, cropped:


Seeing was getting worse. Ended imaging.

2208 MST: StarLock OFF.

Viewed M57 (Ring Nebula), 102X.

2224 MST: LX600 OFF.

Close: Sunday, 29 September 2019, 2233 MST
Temperature: 65°F
Session Length: 2h 10m
Conditions: Clear

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