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Urban Astrophotography : City Moon

Portable Deep-sky Astro-imaging System

March and April are nice months for urban astrophotography. The weather is cold-but-getting-warmer, yet not so warm that night-time air currents disturb the “seeing.” At the end of March, we caught sight of Venus and the waxing Moon. They were in close proximity around 9:15PM and we rushed out the front door to get some shots of the pair before they descended below the tree line.

MoonAndVenus

We managed to get a shot of the two with the Nikon D90/18-300mm on a tripod, but were hoping to get a better one using the 6″OTA. Unfortunately, the gear wasn’t ready and the pair set before we could get thing set up.

ScopeOnTristand

Our efforts were not wasted as we knew that the Moon and Jupiter would be high up in the sky a few nights later. We left the scope and camera rigged just in case the sky was clear on that night. On Sunday, we were excited that it was crisp and cloudless, and we went out to try for some closeup shots of both.

MoonMar29

MoonCloseup

MoonBottom

We only ended up with some of the moon because at 11 PM it was deceptively cold out. Also, we should have been able to get a better focus on the shots we did get, but we didn’t spend enough time futzing, as the cold was getting to us. Those who were out looking at the sky or doing their astrophotography at that time of the night know what we are talking about!!!

Update: April 28

We noticed the night was especially clear and the moon was particularly bright. So we grabbed a few shots before settling in for night. These were a lot crisper than the ones taken earlier in the month, probably because it was still warm out and we can take our time focusing!!!  Ahhh…Spring 🙂

HalfMoon1

HalfMoonTop3

HalfMoonRidge

HalfMoonBottom

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