Messier 81 and Messier 82 – a classic pairing

Making the most of my improved guiding I have been using the big 250mm Newt to image some classic galaxies:

Messier 81
Messier 81 – Bode’s Galaxy 23/1/22

This is a combination of several partial sessions that I had to stop for one reason or another. 10hrs split as 4hrs of Red, 2 hrs of Green and Ha, and only 1hr of Blue! I’ve no idea how many frames were rejected – I left that to the WBB scripts. 

I’d like to make the Holmberg IX dwarf galaxy a bit more prominent if I can (I have some Ha there but it’s very faint).

RBG 30s sub @ 0 Gain

Messier 82 – The Cigar Galaxy 25/2/22

For once my guiding was sub 0.5 arc-sec and conditions were great all night (even with gusts of wind) so I was able to capture all the data in one sessionšŸ„³. This is 3hrs or RGB and 4hrs of Ha. On this occasion I used unity gain for RGB and 200 for Ha, I’ve decided that with so few good nights it makes sense and the noise isn’t excessive. I combined the Red channel as 80%Ha+20% Red to emphasize the disruption.Ā This is probably my best galaxy to date. Only my processing skills limit what my kit can produce.

In comparison here is a wide field image I took last year using my 150mm newt. There’s a lot wrong with the image but it shows the progress I am making.

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