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ISS on 20th May 2020


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About this observation
Chris Hooker
Time of observation
20/05/2020 - 00:31
International Space Station
Observing location
Didcot, Oxfordshire
254 mm Newtonian
5x Powermate
ZWO ASI174MM camera
Baader IR cut filter
0.5 msec
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Conditions were good for the second pass of the evening. The large sensor of the ASI174 camera allows the use of a 5x Powermate without the field of view becoming too small to track the station successfully. The image is a stack of 70 frames selected from a 3 second sequence near the middle of the pass. The heat-rejection panels are overexposed, as usual, but the other parts of the ISS show plenty of detail. The Space Exposure Facility, at the 'upper' end of the hammerhead, shows the different modules that are deployed to allow samples to be subjected to the vacuum environment.


Fossil Light's picture

Tremendous detail on the main body of the ISS, Chris. Very well done- top drawer stuff.
What gain did you use and any ADC in use?
Best wishes

Chris Hooker's picture

Hi Martin,

Thanks for your appreciative comment. Using an ADC isn't possible with the ISS, because its altitude constantly changes and the setting would vary. The gain in this run was 350, which does generate some noise, but I was able to stack a reasonable number of frames to reduce it. I'm still trying to improve the smoothness of my tracking, but it's getting there.


Stevek1804's picture

That is astonishingly good Chris.  Like many of us I suffer as well from overexposed heat rejection panels.  I tried the audio histogram feature of Firecapture last night (thanks Martin for letting me know it existed) and found it very useful (apologies to neighbours for irritating beeps in garden).  With your more advanced tracking you probably don't need it.  The real challenge for me is tracking ISS at zenith with a 25kg telescope on an altaz mount.

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