Tag Archives: MilkyWay

Timmelsjoch High Alpine Road, 2509 m

On Sept. 19th 2019, I went on a short-trip to Timmelsjoch, a high alpine road in the Alps, connecting the Ötztal in Austria with the Passeiertal in South Tyrol/Italy. Spent the night up there, met some nice people, took some photos and got back home the next day with a refueled soul. Enjoy!

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Towards the Timmelsjoch, from the Austrian side…

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Timmelsjoch, 2509 m…

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Nautical twilight, facing the north-west…

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Low stratus coming in, adding some drama to the night sky…

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Dense fog creating some mystical moods…

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The next morning, facing South Tyrol…

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Like a spaceship, the so-called ´Passmuseum`…

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Border sign ´Austria`…

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Timmelsjoch sign…

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The so-called ´Fernrohr`…

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Solitude…

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Albania: From Dusk Till Dawn

Some nighttime impressions from my latest journey to Albania, joined by my two grown-up  sons, late September/early October 2018. What can I say…Albania might be the least known country in whole Europe, some unchartered territory, wild and untamed, enchanting in its own unique way, with very helpful and heartwarming people. Albania is on the list for becoming a future travel destination and will hopefully find its balance and keep its spirit, serving adventurers and tourists alike. Enjoy!

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Earth shadow and belt of Venus appear about 15 min. after the sun has set on the opposite site @ Albanian Alps…

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Stars and the Milkyway appear @ the end of astronomical twilight, Albanian Alps…

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Full Moon setting over the serpentine of Rrapsh, about 20 min. before sunrise, with some Earth shadow and belt of Venus, Albanian Alps…

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Earth shadow and belt of Venus, Theth National park…

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Camp @ Theth National park…

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The two brightest dots in the image are Mars (left) and Saturn (right), using a Cokin diffuser…

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Just before sunrise @ the Albanian Alps…

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Tirana @ night…

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Arriving late at a most beautiful spot to stay for the night, everyone does what needs to be done…

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Terrestrial lights against celestial lights…

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Not much is spoken while enjoying the show…

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Jupiter (top left) and Venus (lower right) @ nautical twilight…

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Looking north @ the Ionian Mediterranean Sea…

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Arcturus (center), the brightest star in the Northern Hemisphere…

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Single shot of the towering Milkyway, using the Polarie…

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Just before sunrise…

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Planets Galore

Being a night out seeing the planets come and go is a special treat, standing on the premises of my family’s farm makes it even more better, but accompanied by my teenage daughter makes it a night to remember for sure. Enjoy!

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Venus over the wheat fields…

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Jupiter over “family ground”…

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While Venus is setting to the west (just above the bushes, center)…

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…Mars is rising to the east…

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Mars, Saturn, Jupiter, the Milky Way…standing on “holy ground”…what better?!  When I was my daughter’s age, I used to work a lot around those fields, doing farm work, these days I´m out there doing star-gazing with my daughter…a blessed father for sure…

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The Milky Way-In All Its Glory

When starting digital imaging in 2010, I admired all the images showing  the milky way in all its glory, not knowing a single thing about how they were taken or even how they have been accomplished/processed. I knew back then, that there is a software out there for stacking multiple images, but that has been all Greek to me. While being in Australia in Aug. 2013, I took heaps of images of the milky way, which is in its own full glory at that time of the year, using a modified Canon 1100 D camera and a Vixen Polarie  star trekking device. Being back home, I had the images, but I still couldn´t figure it out how to process them and using a Mac/iOS made it more difficult to find a proper/for free stacking software. A friend of mine introduced me into PixInsight software, which is a fantastic tool, but it got a very steep learning curve. After years of try and error, being unsatisfied with the outcome, I neglected the project of stacking the images and putting together a multiple mosaic panel of the milky way. Again with the aid of my friend Bernd, who introduced me into processing the images via PixInsight, and a lots of free time during the winter months, I finally have been able to figure things out  I started almost six years ago. The downside of this? The longing for the stars increases more and more every time I look at the final image. To view the image in all its glory – click on it, best seen on a 27″ screen. Enjoy!

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Six-panel mosaic, stacked with PixInsight and stitched together with Lightroom, no adjustments applied…focal length: 70mm…

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Six panel mosaic of the center of the milky way, each panel is a stacked image of multiple photographs. The final image contains 181 single frames, with a total of 74.6 min. exposure time. Stacked with PixInsight, some enhancement in ColorEfex and global adjustments with Lightroom. My all-time favorite is the so-called Cat Paws Nebula (NGC 6334), but there is so much more in it: NGC 6357, M6, M7,M8, M20, the Galactic Center, the “Kiwi” to the lower right and some sort of “skull” right in the center…

Going Deep With: Canon 1100 d(a), Vixen Polarie And PixInsight

Since about one year now, I got those deep sky images lying on my hard drive, which I took back then while traveling the East Coast of Australia in August 2013. All I could do was processing the single images via Lightroom and even making mosaics via Hugin software. The results have been satisfying, but I knew there must be more to it. So I got myself PixInsight (http://pixinsight.com), a special software for processing deep sky images, and most important to me, it also runs on a Mac. Taking images is one thing, but processing them (to me) is much more complex. So I got myself that miraculous piece of software, but could´t work with properly until my Austrian based friend Bernd Weinzierl got to my aid. Make sure you take a look at his stuff at: http://innerberg-astro.lima-city.de/index.html. We did some sort of joint-venture then; Bernd processed my images with PixInsight and the result almost blew my mind. Never before had I dreamed about making such MilkyWay shots myself – until now. Makes me want to head back to Australia right now and shoot the hell out of it while the center of our home galaxy is still at the zenith – a paradise for deep-sky-imaging. But for now, I got enough stuff already to process to, not speaking about the mosaics possible now…stay tuned. All you need for doing this is: a modified camera like the Canon 1100 d, a startracking device like the Vixen Polarie, a sturdy (carbon) tripod, two ballheads, an intervalometer, a fast lens (f2.8 or less) and of course clear skies. And most of all, someone who can operate the complex PixInsight software. Once you are into it, new dimensions will unfold – the stars are yours! Enjoy!

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Original Raw-file: 119 sec., f 3.5, Iso 1600 @ 20mm…looking right at the center of our home galaxy, the Milkyway…Scorpio to the left, Sagittarius to the right…including star clusters and hydrogen-alpha nebulae…

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Processed Raw-file via Lightroom 5 only…

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Screenshot: eleven images, stacked with PixInsight…

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Final outcome, done with PixInsight and CS5 by Bernd Weinzierl…high-res image can be seen here: http://innerberg-astro.lima-city.de/Bilder%20gross/Widefields/Milchstrassenzentrum.jpg

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“Life is like a camera. Focus on what is important. Capture the good times. Develop from the negatives. And if things don´t turn out, take another shot.”

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Another Night Out – With The Polarie

Haven´t used the Vixen Polarie since almost one year now, everything what is needed to use that star tracking device fell into place last night. The high towering MilkyWay, a nice foreground and a starry night two days before New Moon got me going. For the first time since six month, I have spent the whole night out, first catching the MilkyWay and later on waiting for the Crescent Moon to rise over my old home turf. What a night to remember…watching the MilkyWay and Andromeda Galaxy, the conjunction of Mercury, Venus and the Moon, the ISS flying by (with Germany´s own Alexander Gerst), and the change of colors during the different times of twilight in the morning. But most of all: feeling the serenity and silence of the night again, feeling being one with the universe. Like Neville said: ” The world is an ocean of liquid light in countless different states of crystallization.” Enjoy!

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Prunn Castle, MilkyWay & Andromeda…

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Prunn Castle, MilkyWay & Andromeda, with Canon 1100d (a) and Polarie, with some faint Air Glow…

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Crescent Moon rising above my “home” church”…

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Crescent Moon rising two days before New Moon…

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Venus to the left joining the show…

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ISS on the way or how to build a triangle…

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Mercury (lower left), Venus (center) and Crescent Moon at the end of nautical twilight…

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Australia: From Dusk Till Dawn Video

The first set of ´Nightscape images` from my recent journey to Australia, composed with the song “Transformation” by The Cinematic Orchestra, which you can buy here: https://itunes.apple.com/de/album/transformation/id297787201?i=297787669&ign-mpt=uo%3D4 . Along with two quotes by Rumi, a 13th-century Persian poet and mystic, and the song title in mind, it sums up everything what I´m up these days…Enjoy!

"You have no need to travel anywhere.Journey within yourself, enter a mine of rubies and bathe in the splendor of your own Light."
"The Universe is not outside of you. Look inside yourself; everything that you want, you already are."

Make sure to hit the HD-Button on the top right…and play it loud (if you like;)…

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