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NGC 5985 Spiral Galaxy in Draco

This week I introduce the first CCD image taken with the 8" Newtonian telescope I made in the early 60's. It can be seen on the Telescope Page.

I started doing astrophotography with this scope and then built the 10", followed by the 16". With film photography, a telescope is never big enough but with CCD, that is not necessarily the case. I have been experimenting with the 4" recently and then last week, did what I thought I would never do. I removed the 16" from the mount and re-installed the 8" and I am really pleased with the results.

The most obvious feature is that the focal length is only 40" or about half the length of the 16". This provides a much larger field but of course, at the price of smaller images and less resolution.

It also happens to be f/5 instead of f4.5 and surprisingly, it produces a much cleaner image, primarily because of the greatly reduced coma at the edges.

The following image was posted at full size to get a better idea of the quality of the image and hopefully it is now finished loading.

NGC5985 lies at a distance of about 100 million light years and is about 160,000 light years across, which is about the same size as the Milky Way.

The white blob to the right is NGC 5982, and eliptical galaxy.

This image was a stack of 5 x 10 minute exposures with the MX716 camera and the 8" telescope.


This higher resolution image was taken several years ago with the 16" scope and the MX516 camera.

For the most recent Astrophotos of the Week... RECENT PHOTOS

All film photos taken with the...JSP ASTROCAMERA

Astro Photo Index

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