Technical Details & Equipment

Main Imaging Setup
2015-2016

2015 Imaging Orion

William Optics 132FLT 5.9 telescope w/WO .8 reducer
QHY 16200 mono camera with 7 position filter wheel & Astrodon Filters
Astro Physics Mach 1GTO
Astro Physics Eagle 1 Pier
QHYm OAG & QHY 5L2 mono guide camera
Kendrick dew system
Moonlite focuser- rotation & focus
Bioenno 100ah LifePo battery




Dual imaging with twin WO 132flt

Main Setup 2017
Dual William Optics 132FLT 5.9 telescopes w/ WO .8 reducer
QHY 16200 mono cameras with 7 position filter wheels & Astrodon Filters
ADM Dual aiming saddle
WO Guidescope w/ QHY 5L2 mono guide camera
Astrodon filters
Moonlite focusers- rotation & focus
Bioenno 100ah LifePo battery
ATS 10×42 Pier





Moving into the Observatory was amazing. Here’s timelapse of the first month, with a LUNAR ECLIPSE at 1:52/3!

Lunar Eclipse at 1:52… WHY does this not have a million views?

Stay with the video for 37 seconds and then prepare to be mesmerized! We spent two months building the camera and had a great month of clear-ish skies to tes…

Pier # 2 in Marathon Texas at the Marathon Sky Park



Observatory Setup 2017- Current
William Optics 132FLT 5.9 telescope w/WO .8 reducer
QHY 16200 mono camera with 7 position filter wheel & Astrodon Filters
Astro Physics Mach 1GTO
QHYm OAG & QHY 5L2 mono guide camera
Kendrick dew system
Moonlite focuser- rotation & focus




Secondary Setup 2017- Current

If it’s clear, I pack up the gear!


For shooting at home-
William Optics 132FLT 5.9 telescopes w/ WO .8 reducer
QHY 16200 mono camera w/ 7 position filter wheel & Astrodon Filters
WO Guidescope w/ QHY 5l2 mono guide camera
Moonlite focusers- rotation & focus
Bioenno 100ah LifePo battery
ATS 10×42 Pier





Dual imaging on SGP- One primary scope with guider, one secondary scope without guider and pauses to ensure equal numbers

Software used in aquisition, calibration, and integration
Sequence Generator Pro from Main Sequence Software
PHD2 Guiding
Pixinsight
Astro Pixel Processor
Photoshop







Project highlights

The 192 Panel Mosaic began as a 12 panel mosaic on a different system

– 2013: Development of idea
– 2014: Purchase of initial equipment
– 2015: Refinement of process
– November 2015: Officially began mosaic with a failed start- re-figuring equipment
– 2016-2017: Backyard and weekend warrior- decided to create dual imaging system (two tubes, one mount)
– 2016-2017: Local imaging at dark sites anytime the skies allowed
– 2016- 2017: Completion of 52 panels as a travelling imager – Fall 2017: Invited into MaRIO Observatory in Marathon. Tx at the Marathon Sky Park. Amazing opportunity that allowed me to complete another 28 panels in one season
– 2018: Completion of an additional 49 panels in one season in an observatory
– 2019: Completion of a total of 58 panels in the observatory
– Spring 2020: Completion of a total of 26 panels (many redone because of subpar data) in the observatory – Summer 2020: First attempt at processing complete data met with failure because of inefficient processing/computing power.  Limited to sections of the mosaic at a time. – Summer 2020: Compiled data and built a website to house the data during spare time afforded by pandemic
– Summer 2020: Built a computer to process the 22 TB of data stored across 12 hard drives
– August 27, 2020: Calibrated and registered all 204 panels with astrometric solutions via Pixinsight
– Projected October 2020: Solving and processing the final data for release

Marathon Skies: An Astronomy Adventure

Three years of visiting the dark skies of Marathon! I can never get enough. If you are an astronomer and looking for a wonderful place to observe, recharge y…