Ah, what the hell

I know we just did some moon stuff a few days back, and we also just had (or are about to have, if I finish this post before the other hits its schedule) a lot of B&W images, but I liked this clip and had to share.

After playing around a bit, I angled the camera to align with the diagonal direction of travel for the moon, aiming slightly above it to let it come into the frame; it was definitely more dramatic with the terminator leading and the details slowly coming into view. Yeah, I know it’s not quite centered – you try to perfectly line up something traveling diagonally by shifting the camera ahead of it while it’s tilted at a matching angle.

Again, this is real time, the amount that the moon actually travels across the sky (or the Earth rotates, blah blah.) I did several clips, and this was the last, coming up pretty clear. But I have others in the middle that showed a noticeable amount of scintillation which caused the details, especially along the terminator, to ripple. While this is caused by atmospherics, air densities and movement and all that, I don’t know why they changed so significantly, back and forth, in the half hour or so that I was out. Yet this also shows that, unless conditions are optimal, a long exposure of a dimmer subject (everything else in the sky, really,) would easily be blurred by these changes, no matter how stable and sharp the rig, no matter how accurate the tracking system.

I’m gradually getting closer to doing some real telescope stuff, and expect to have some results this winter. We’ll just have to see what transpires.