Time Lapse Video of Lunar Eclipse


Stitched together the 330 photos of the September 27th Lunar Eclipse into a video.

A few things to note.  The Moon “jumps” a few times in the video, and I now realize that it’s due to my presence on the wooden deck is sufficient to cause the telescope to shift ever slightly.  Also I didn’t really take time for proper polar alignment, I was a good 5deg off and had to re-align during the total eclipse because the tracking was not perfect.  And last, some cloud cover rolled in so I wasn’t able to capture the tail end of the eclipse.

Nevertheless, still much better than the few frames I captured back in 2008.

For the curious of the camera setting.  The start with the full moon is taken at ISO 200 1/320sec and then increased up to 3.2sec exposures at ISO 400 during the eclipse.

“Super” Moon Just Prior to the Eclipse


On September 27th, there wasn’t just a lunar eclipse… There was a large magnificent full moon in the sky.  Therefore once I had all my gear setup and ready for the show, I decided to snap a few frames before the start of the eclipse.

The sky was wonderfully clear and the seeing great.  Through the telescope I noticed very little turbulence in the air.  Below is a stack of 11 frames, to which I adjusted the color, the levels and played with the wavelets sharpening to get some detail out of the lunar surface.

Click on the photo for a full resolution version.

September 27th Full Moon

September 27th Full Moon

September 27th 2015 – Lunar Eclipse


Transferring over 300 photos (2.5GB) from the old astro-laptop via USB key to my main PC will take some time (30 minutes just to transfer 1.0GB on the key).  Therefore the work towards making a time lapse video will be tomorrow.

In the meantime here is one quick pick from the lot of photos taken with the Canon mounted on the telescope.  Did a quick stretch and level adjustment, just so I’d have something to show before going to bed.

September 27th 2015 Lunar Eclipse

September 27th 2015 Lunar Eclipse

Earth’s Shadow is Creeping Over the Moon


Getting down to a crescent as Earth’s shadow creeps over the Moon.


Down to a crescent

Lunar Eclipse has Started


The trusty Skywatcher 80ED is on my Vixen GP mount and have the camera taking one frame every 20 secondes.

I’ll have to adjust the exposure as totality approaches. Below is a view off the computer screen.


Left edge already in the shadow

SuperMoon Lunar Eclipse This Sunday


I quick reminder of the SuperMoon lunar eclipse this Sunday.  The next time that a lunar eclipse coincides with the Moon’s closest approach will be 2033.  So recharge your camera and get your tripod out of the closet to record the event.

CBC News has provided the viewing times for different parts of Canada.



Atik Infinity Camera – For Video Astronomy

Atik has just released a new camera dedicated to video astronomy: the Atik Infinity.  It is a step up from their Titan that sells for about $600, but still marketed as entry-level camera due to its ease of us and just scratching the $1000 selling price.

Atik Infinity Camera - Atik

Atik Infinity Camera – Atik

It’s designed around the Sony ICX825 sensor, the same one used with good success on their 414EX, and can be ordered as monochrome or color.  Atik also supplies a custom software application that allows you to live view, control the camera with real-time integration and broadcast on YouTube the resulting video stream.

While it may not have the active cooling of the 414EX, the lower price, smaller footprint and freedom from dew/frost issues that cooling brings it will certainly draw attention.

Below is a recap of the Atik Infinity live broadcast performed by Atik on September 8th to demonstrate some of the Infinity’s capabilities.


Comet C/2013 US10 (Catalina) Continues To Be Visible

Comet C/2013 US10 (Catalina) continues to be visible at around magnitude 6 to observers in the southern hemisphere.  For people north of the equator, we’ll have to wait until late November when it will become an early morning comet.

One date to mark on your calendar is the morning of December 7th.  A wonderful early morning opportunity to spot C/2013 US10 next to Venus and a Lunar crescent all within a 6 deg window.  This will be fairly low (20 deg) over the South-East horizon.

Comet C/2013 US10 Catalina, Venus and the Moon

Comet C/2013 US10 Catalina, Venus and the Moon

Under dark skies it should be observable to the naked eye.  But binoculars or even a camera zoom lens will provide for better observation.

September 27th 2015 – Don’t Miss it: Superbloodmoon

A total lunar eclipse is sometimes referred as a Blood Moon due to the reddish-brown hue the Moon takes when passing in Earth’s shadow.  So why “Super“?  The Moon has an elliptical orbit around Earth, with the distance varying by 20,000km between the closest (perigee) and farther (apogee) approaches.  When there is a full Moon during its closest approach it’s called a Supermoon.  The result is a Moon that is 14% larger in area and 30% brighter than at apogee.

September 27th 2015 happens to be special because both events will take place at the same time: a total lunar eclipse at perigee.  Last time that happened was nearly 30 years ago!

Total Lunar Eclipse 20-Feb-2008 - Benoit Guertin

Total Lunar Eclipse
20-Feb-2008 – Benoit Guertin