Horsehead IC 1396 Horsehead

(These are very large files - Broadband recommended on anything 50% size and over)

(Click on image for 50% Resolution)

(Click here for 100% of full size - 6.06MB)

(Click here for my AP155/ST-8E shot of just the Elephant's Trunk)

Date: July 6-23, 2007
Exposure: HaLRGB : 150:495:555:495:390
5 x 1800s Ha, 33 x 900s L, 37 X 900s R, 33 X 900s G, 26 X 900s B
Processing: CCDAutoPilot3 used to collect data over multiple nights. CCDSoft for image acquisition, CCDStack on a x64 Vista machine for Image calibration, Astrodon Ha,L,R,G,B filters (15 flats each Ha,L,R,G,B, Bias subtracted and Sigma Clip combined, 25 bias frames Sigma Clip combined, 12-1800s darks Sigma Clip combined), alignment, normalization, FITS master files creation, and RGB raw TIFF creation. Photoshop CS2 for final HaLRGB processing, final layers adjustment and jpg conversion for the website.
Conditions: Good to Excellent, Mag 6-7 Skies, very clear and low humidity.
Scope: FSQ-106N @ F/5 on a Paramount ME
Camera: SBIG STL-11K, -20°
Comments: This was taken over multiple nights to get the almost 35 hours of data needed to have good S/N. Even with the small amount of Ha data collected, it still overpowered the RGB when combined with the R and B frames. I combined the Ha with the L at 30% opacity and then used this as an additional Lum layer combined at 15%. This seemed to add just the right amount Ha detail without sending the image into the salmon color range. As an added treat, PLN 97+3.1 appears in the top left corner. I thought at first it was a processing anomaly until I zoomed in and saw it had more structure than just a red spot. After researching it, it is the Planetary.