Experiments with Venus

December 15, 2007

Uploaded 12/16/07

Getting up at 7 am on a Saturday isn't easy, but I really wanted to try out my new DMK camera with the new Schuler UV filter on the clouds of the planet Venus, to see if I could capture any dark markings in the cloud decks. The images below also show that for the white light views, stopping down to 5 inches off axis seem to sharpen the blur a bit. The bottom set is in UV and had to be full aperture to let enough light to the camera through for a reasonable exposure. All images have been processed for maximum detail, since the originals, selected as the best hundreds or so from thousands of frames, were just one big blur.

This image is full aperture - 12.5 inches with a 2x Televue
Big Barlow. 

With the scope stopped down, the overall sharpness is better,
but still one big blur in the Raw's.

This is a prime focus shot, at f/5 with the UV filter.  You can
now see some dim shadings on the disk. 

With the most power I can use on this morning - a 2x barlow,
the view is similarly detailed.  I see polar cusps, and a bright
patch in the center of the disk.  This is the most detail I have
ever recorded in Venus - so far.
Instrument: 12.5" f/5 with no or 2x Barlow Platform: Astrophysics AP1200 CCD Camera: Image Source DMK 31AU03.AS Exposure: 1/15 - 250 sec 7fps Location: Payson, Arizona Elevation: 5150 ft. Sky: Seeing Poor to Average about 10 arcsec FWHM, Transparency 8/10 Outside Temperature: 27F Processing: Registax, PixInsight Pro, Photoshop CS3