Astrophotography

DaveH

Striker
Was decent weather last night so I had my first stab at star trails. I'm usually doing things to stop the stars trailing:


I didn't quite have the camera timer working properly, which give 80 second gaps between frames, which is why they look grainy. The few 'fixed stars' are noise on the camera sensor.

To do it, I played around with settings to give the longest exposure I could without too much noise. 80 second exposure, f/5.6 aperture (the widest it will open) and ISO400. I then used a remote shutter release to keep taking pictures and went back in the house leaving it. This shutter release:
You also need a tripod.

I didn't do a delay between images to give the camera time to save, should have had a 10 second interval. What I should have done is half a dozen 'dark frames' at the end, where you take images in the same way with the lens cap on. This will give you only your fixed sensor noise. The two dotted lines going past are planes. With reduced air travel, now is a really good time to do this sort of thing!

There is a free application StarStax which will take the images and combine them into the trails. You can also load in your dark frames and it will try to subtract the hot pixels.

I'm pleased but hopefully my second attempt is better. General advice is to make the trails behind an interesting foreground image. The bit of my guttering in the corner of the shot does not really count as interesting.
 
Got a few i've taken, all using my Huawei P20 Pro Phone.

1. ISS - long exposure over haggerston castle caravan park



2. 30s Long Exposure of the stars, laid my phone onto of the car and left it to do its thing, taken outside the house in Bishop Auckland IIRC



3. Startrails, only done this once and this was the result, will probably have to give it another go at some stage

 

DaveH

Striker
Got a few i've taken, all using my Huawei P20 Pro Phone.

1. ISS - long exposure over haggerston castle caravan park



2. 30s Long Exposure of the stars, laid my phone onto of the car and left it to do its thing, taken outside the house in Bishop Auckland IIRC



3. Startrails, only done this once and this was the result, will probably have to give it another go at some stage

Those are really impressive for a mobile phone. Do you know what time of year the middle one was taken? I mainly know the night sky from the brightest stars. It is hard when you have the ‘noise’ of all the other stars you can’t normally see unless you get away from light pollution
 
Those are really impressive for a mobile phone. Do you know what time of year the middle one was taken? I mainly know the night sky from the brightest stars. It is hard when you have the ‘noise’ of all the other stars you can’t normally see unless you get away from light pollution
Looking at phone info, it was taken Tuesday 17th December at 19.08
 

DaveH

Striker
Looking at phone info, it was taken Tuesday 17th December at 19.08
More precision than I was expecting! I can't work out what bit of sky it is, I've compared it to stellarium for those dates and nothing leaps out. I did wonder if that brown shading on the right was part of the milky way or just a camera effect.
 

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