Here are some of the CCD images I took on June 5th 1999 from Fremont Peak in Northern California. On most images I did no image processing besides stretching (in particular look at the M57 images which are the same image but stretched differently). On one image (M51) I tried Maximum Entropy Deconvolution with good results.

Actually, I'm quite amazed that I got any results because:

1. I was using a new mount and telescope (a Takahashi FS-128 and Astrophysics 900 mount). BTW, the FS-128 and AP900 are both absolutely first rate. I'm looking forward to doing many more images with this equipment, especially some color images!

2. All images were unguided without PEC .

3. This was also the first time that I tried to accurately polar align a scope (my Vixen GP with SkySensor 2000 only needed to be approximately aligned).

4. This was the first time I used my upgraded CCD camera (an SBIG ST7E) since I got it back from the manufacturer.

5. This was the first time I used my Dell notebook running Windows NT and Software Bisque's CCDSoft software (I usually use MaximDL/CCD but it can't control my camera when running on Windows NT).

6. This was the first time I did image acquisition from a remote site. I wan't sure if I had remembered everything I needed to acquire images!

7. No flat frames were taken or used.

-Ray Gralak, June 6th, 1999

M104: 2 minute exposure:

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M51: 8 one-minute exposures:

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Same M51 image after using MaximDL's Maximum Entropy Deconvolution algorithm (6/7/99):

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Which one do you prefer (A-D)? Send me email at (6/9/99):

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M57: 2 minute exposure, minimal stretch to bring out just the Ring:

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Same image of M57 but "stretched" digitally to bring out IC1296 left of the middle in the image:

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