Observing Report – 2023-02-17 – WSP Night 5/Horse Head and Flame Nebula, Leo Galaxy Triplet, and Omega Centauri Globular Cluster

My objectives for this session were to shoot Horse Head/Flame Nebula, Leo Triplet, and Omega Centuari. My only test objective was to image an emission nebula (Horse Head/Flame), a galaxy (Triplet), and a stars only (Omega) target to validate my planned exposure times in a dark sky site.

The temperature was in the upper 80s at the beginning of the session, and RH was 65% and rising. I felt a very occasional and light breeze. Dew formed on equipment cases, the metal table, and on the telescope and mount. The optics stayed clear under a fully on dew heater.

Power up, start up, initial focus and polar alignment were all nominal. I had planned to take flat frames at dusk, but I had difficulty getting the cardboard tube over the telescope dew shield, so I gave that up.

Horse Head/Flame (IC 434)  was shot from 1945 to 2300 and Leo Triplet was shot from 2300 to 0200. Both captures were 120s subs (L x 30, RGB 10 each). Omega Centauri was shot from 0200 to 0130 (L: 100 x 20s, RGB 30 ea x 20s).

The only issues I encountered is that I had set up the Omega capture for 120s subs when I meant to capture 20s subs. I halted the erroneous run after the first sub, so not much time was lost there. I had some trouble restarting the sequence after correcting it. I also had to wait for the target to transit behind a light post, about 20 minutes.

The only to-do item that I have is to p  ut a looser cardboard tube on the flat panel box.

Session was over by 0145. Temperature was 72 degrees, and RH was 90%. It was a soggy night, but I really enjoyed it.

Omega Centauri (NGC 5139) - 2023-02-18 - Winter Star Party
The Horse Head Nebula and The Flame Nebula - 2023-02-17 - Winter Star Party
Horse Head and Flame Nebulae
The Leo Triplet - 2023-02-17 - M65, M66, and NGC2638
The Leo Triplet

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