M51 from Bortle9 – Planetary Setup

M51 from Bortle9 – Planetary Setup

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Imaging Telescopes Or Lenses : Celestron C14
Imaging Cameras : ZWO ASI183MM Pro
Mounts : Astro-Physics 1100GTO
Filters : Astrodon Clear 50 mm · Astrodon Gen1 E-Series Tru-Balance Red · Astrodon Gen2 E-Series Tru-Balance Red 36 mm · Astrodon Gen2 I-Series Tru-Balance Green 36mm
Accessories : Astro-Physics 2.7″ Photo-visual Telecompressor (27TVPH)
Software : Pleiades Astrophoto PixInsight · Stefan Berg Nighttime Imaging ‘N’ Astronomy (N.I.N.A. / NINA)
Guiding Cameras : ZWO ASI290MM

Acquisition details

Dates : Sept. 10, 2022
Frames : Astrodon Clear 50 mm: 628×45″(7h 51′) bin 1×1
Astrodon Gen1 E-Series Tru-Balance Red: 35×240″(2h 20′)
Integration : 10h 11′
Avg. Moon age : 14.85 days
Avg. Moon phase : 99.99%
Bortle Dark-Sky Scale : 9.00


M51 LRGB from Bortle 9

This was an interesting exercise and a bit of a brute force approach.
While waiting for a new deep sky telescope, I used the planetary Celestron C14 (non-edge version) with the very small pixeled 183 mono camera with 2.4 micron pixels.
The 4000mm focal length of the C14 was too long and lower by almost 0.5x with the Optec Nextgen reducer.
That reducer is only suitable for small sensors and has limited back focus so no OAG was possible. I had a 76mm triplet on top of the C14 as a guidescope (dew shield was used as well).

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