Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Blood Moon

Early this morning there was a total lunar eclipse. I observed the event from my backyard using a couple of digital cameras attached to a Canon EF 400mm lens and a Questar 3.5" telescope. The two cameras were mounted on my Takahashi EM200 in anticipation of the long exposures necessary to capture the event. Below are a sample of some of the images I was able to get. From a visual standpoint the eclipse seemed darker than most I've observed in the past. (L= 3.8?).

The larger scale images were obtained through the Questar. Exposures with this instrument ranged from 10 seconds to 23 seconds working at ISO 800 and F/16. Wider field images were shot through the EF 400 F/2.8L IS lens at F/4.0 ISO 800 with expsoures from 4 to 15 seconds.

A 23 second exposure at mid eclipse.

A 15 second exposure showing the sparse star field of the event.

A 4 second exposure showing the turquiose blue tinge of the shadow - possibly due to ozone in Earth's upper atmosphere.

Remember this old trick? A Looong exposure of a total lunar eclipse through a wide angle lens? Well - this is what you get when you try it with a digital SLR, no noise reduction and high ambient temperatures. An ill-fated attempt at capturing the full eclipse from beginning to end in a single 3 hour long exposure. Even with the camera set to ISO 100 - the noise was just shocking. The ambient temperature was 86 degrees Fahrenheit. A task best left to film for sure! ;-> Canon EOS 5D | 16-35mm F/2.8 L lens @ 24mm and F/18 | ISO 100 | exposure @ 10600 seconds!

1 comment:

Tuguldur said...

Images are awesome! :)

wish I had my camera.. :(

Anyways your mount looks like Takahashi(is it?) - I can imagine what a piece of an art it is. And questar... wow! :)