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Randy Strauss
Papillion, Nebraska
03/04/2024
08:30 pm

Equipment Details:

Celestron 4SE, Canon SL2 (200D) and Neewer URS-7000 shutter release. No filters. I used the mount's EQ North feature.

Post-processing Details:

Sequator to stack; GIMP to enhance colors, bring out details and minimize effects of light pollution.

Image Details:

I had clear skies March 3 and 4 and wanted to see if I could capture M42 using my Celestron 4SE and Canon SL2, under my backyard's heavily light polluted skies (I estimate Bortel 7+). As usual, I used a patio umbrella to block the worst of an LED street light that was directly in front of my scope. I wasn't sure how well it would work since the 4SE is F/13 and 1325mm focal length. I ended up with 336 good frames, each 15 seconds exposure time with half at ISO 6400, the other half at ISO 3200. Keeping the exposures short I was able to limit trailing and not blow out the trapezium too badly. I tossed out another 100 frames that had oblong stars. GIMP's curves features worked well at minimizing the effects of the light pollution.

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