noctilove
15
NOV
2014
The Pleiades

The Pleiades

The open cluster of the Pleiades is a captivating sight in the winter sky, with nebulosity visible even to the the naked eye. Longer exposures reveal the electric colour of the blue hot stars at the cluster’s heart. These bright stars make it tricky to capture the fainter...
02
SEP
2014
M17 omega nebula 180mm f2.8 ed

Omega nebula & Eagle nebula

The Omega nebula, also known as the Swan nebula (although it looks more like a snail to me) in Sagittarius is a tricky one from this latitude (54° north) as once the summer twilight passes and it’s dark enough to take photos again, it barely gets above the horizon. I had a...
20
AUG
2014
comet jacques 2014 heart soul nebula barn door tracker

Comet Jacques – C/2014 E2

Comet Jacques is now perfectly placed for Northern hemisphere observers. Visible all night for the next month or so, it’s path takes it directly along the spine of the Milky Way. This should make for some interesting conjunctions, and some good photo ops in the coming...
19
APR
2014
M51 whirlpool galaxy

Whirlpool galaxy & comet PANSTARRS

Spring is a great time to for viewing galaxies in the northern hemisphere. The Virgo supercluster arches overhead in a vast swathe through the constellations of Virgo, Leo, Coma Berenices and Canes Venatici. Many famous and recognisable galaxies occupy this region, but none may...
06
MAR
2014
rosette nebula barn door tracker

Rosette nebula

I was a bit hesitant to image the Rosette nebula as it sits quite low in the sky, and is even fainter than the tricky Horsehead nebula which I had difficulty capturing a few months ago. So I didn’t expect much of a result when capturing the images with my DSLR/barn door...
31
JAN
2014
cigar galaxy supernova M82

Supernova!

Eleven and a half million years ago, a massive explosion lit up the Cigar galaxy (M82), and just last week, the light from this dying star finally arrived on Earth. This is a rare supernova event (and the closest to Earth in 20 years) so I thought I’d have a go at capturing...
02
DEC
2013
north america nebula cygnus barn door tracker

North America nebula

The Sun sets by mid afternoon this time of the year in the north of the UK. This is not good news for SAD sufferers, but it’s great for astrophotography! Because of the long nights, the summer constellations sit high in the late afternoon/early evening sky well into January. This...