LATEST IMAGES
FROM
LAND OF OZ OBSERVATORY
M-42 (NGC-1976), The Great Nebula in Orion:  This is a wide field image, 1.2 X 1 degree, showing the Orion Nebula, M-42 and the smaller nebula M-43,
just to its left (east), as well as the "Running Man" reflection nebula (upper left center). This image captured at Land of Oz Observatory on November 8, 2015
using the C-11 at f/2. Total exposure time 76 minutes. This image is a composite of sub-exposures of varying length, with shorter exposures to capture the
inner details of the area around the "Trapezium" of stars at the heart of the nebula, and progressively longer exposures to capture the faint outer extensions
of M-42/43, as well as the fainter reflection nebula.  A total of 160 sub-exposures were integrated to create the above image. Camera: SXVR-H694C.
Guided, captured, combined and processed using Maxim DL 5 Pro. Post processed in PhotoShop CS2, levels, curves, color balance & saturation and
differential stretching, Gradient X-Terminator and Croman's StarShrink.
SUPERNOVA 2016-cok IN GALAXY M-66: Discovered May 28, 2016 by the All-Sky Automated Search for Supernovae (ASAS-SN) of Ohio
State University, located on Mt. Haleakela in Hawai'ii. This exploding star erupted in the spiral galaxy M-66 in Leo, which lies over 35 million light years
from earth.  The explosion was caused by the collapse of a massive star some 8 to 50 times larger than our sun. The collapse and subsequent shock
wave caused a titanic outburst known as a type II supernova. When first discovered, it shone at approximately 16.7 magnitude, but had brightened
somewhat by the time this image was captured on the evening of June 4, using my Celestron 11 at f/2 using the HyperStar imaging system with a
StarlightExpress SXVR-H694C one-shot color CCD imager. This is an integration of 7 300 sec. exposures. Guided, captured combined and processed
using Maxim DL 5 Pro. Post-processed using PhotoShop CS2, levels, curves, color balance & saturation, Gradient X-Terminator and StarShrink.
The Fornax Galaxy Cluster: This is a group of over 15 galaxies located in the constellation of Fornax (The Furnace) near its
border with Eridanus. The cluster is anchored by a pair of massive elliptical galaxies, NGC-1399 and NGC-1404, and contains
both other ellipticals and spiral galaxies, such as NGC-1380, at the northern edge of the cluster. This group of galaxies lies at a
distance of about 62 million light years from Earth.
NOTE: This image is 1 hour of data (10 six-minute subs) through the Celestron 11" SCT at f/2, using HyperStar and the Starlight
Xpress SXVR- H694C color imager. Guided, captured and calibrated using Maxim DL5 Pro. Post-processed in PhotoShop CS2,
using levels, curves, color balance, Gradient X-Terminator and StarShrink.
SUPERNOVA 2017eaw IN SPIRAL GALAXY NGC-6946: This supernova was discovered on May 14, 2017 by
Patrick Wiggins. It is a type IIP (Plateau) supernova, caused by the collapse and subsequent explosion of a massive
star. This is the 10th supernovae to erupt in this galaxy in the last 100 years! This image was captured on the
morning of May 29th, at which time it was shining at 12.8 magnitude. This is one hour of data (10 six-minute
exposures) through the Celestron 11-inch SCT at f/2 using HyperStar and the SXVR H694C CCD color imager.
Guided, captured and combined using Maxim DL5. Post processed using PhotoShop CS2.
SUPERNOVA 2017ein in Galaxy NGC-3938: This supernova was discovered on May 25th, 2017, at which time it
was at 17th magnitude. NGC-3938 is a large face-on type Sc galaxy in Ursa Major and lies approximately 40 million
light years from Earth. Spectroscopy indicates that this is a type II supernova, caused by the collapse of a super
giant star. This image was captured on the evening of June 19th, 2017, when the supernova was at 15th magnitude.
48 minutes of data (8 six-minute subs) through the C-11 at f/2 using HyperStar and the SXVR-H694C 1-shot color
imager. Guided, captured & combined using Maxim DL5. Post processed using PhotoShop CS2, levels, curves,
Gradient XTerminator and StarShrink.
THE NORTH AMERICAN NEBULA (NGC-7000): This is the "FIRST LIGHT" image from the new ZWO ASI-071-MC CMOS-based imaging camera.  The camera
is a 16 mega-pixel 1-shot color camera. Using the HyperStar system at f/2 on the C-11, it has a resolution of 1.76 arc seconds per pixel and a field of 145 X 95
arc minutes (almost 2.5 X 1.5 degrees). This allows for the imaging of larger deep sky objects such as the nebula above, as well as large galaxies like M-31
and M-33.
NOTE: The above image was captured on the evening of October 17, 2017 and is an integration of twelve 360 second sub-exposures for a total integration
time of 72 minutes. The image was guided, captured and combined using Maxim DL 5 Pro. Post-processing was done in PhotoShop CS2, using levels, curves,
colorbalance & saturation, Gradient XTerminator and StarShrink.  This very first image shows that the new camera has definite possibilities!
M-31 (THE ANDROMEDA GALAXY) AND COMPANIONS: This was the SECOND image captured with the new ZWO-ASI 071- MC
camera on the evening of October 17, 2017.  Nicely framed in the 2.5 X 1.5 degree frame are M-31, M-32  and NGC-205. The 1.76
arc second/pixel resolution of this camera captured nice detail in M-31, including lots of dust lane detail and many scattered star clouds in the
spiral arms, including the bright OB supergiant association NGC-206 (visible in the outer spiral arm at the upper right).
NOTE: This is an integration of ten 360-second exposures through the C-11 at f/2.
Guided, captured and combined using Maxim DL5 Pro. Post-processed using PhotoShop CS2, levels, curves, color balance and
saturation, Gradient XTerminator and StarShrink.
OTHER IMAGES BELOW:
SUPERNOVA IN URSA MAJOR GALAXY
THE "DOUBLE CLUSTER" IN PERSEUS: The common name for the pair of open star clusters NGC-884 (left) and NGC-869
(right) which lie in the constellation of Perseus. This pair of clusters is visible to the naked eye as a faint misty patch east and
slightly south of the familiar "W" shape of the constellation Cassiopiea. They lie at a distance of approximately 7500 light
years from Earth. NGC-884 is distinguishable from its neighbor due to its more open structure and the presence of a number
of bright red supergiant stars.
NOTE: This is the THIRD image obtained with the new ZWO ASI071 MC wide-field color imager. It is an integration of six 360
second exposures for a total integration time of 36 minutes. Guided, captured and combined using Maxim DL5. Post
processed using PhotoShop CS2. This image was captured on the evening of 12/18/2017.
THE PLEIADES (M-45): An open star cluster and nebulosity located in the shoulder of Taurus the Bull. This large bright
star cluster lies only 400 light years from Earth. It is a relatively young cluster and contains young, hot, super luminous B-type
stars that have formed in just the last 100 million years. The dust which forms the nebulosity that surrounds the brightest
members was once thought to be left over from their formation, but is now known to be an unrelated dust cloud in the
interstellar medium through which these stars are currently passing.
NOTE: This is the FIFTH image obtained using the new ZWO ASI071 MC wide-field color imager.  It is an integration of ten
360 second exposures for a total exposure time of 1 hour. Guided, captured and combined using Maxim DL5.
Post processed using PhotoShop CS2. This image was obtained on the evening of 12/18/17.
OPEN CLUSTERS M-35 & NGC-2158: Located in Gemini, this pair of clusters represent an incredible depth of field.
M-35 lies 2800 light years from earth, whereas NGC-2158, although on the same line of sight, lies almost 15,000 light
years away! The bright yellow-white star to the east (left) of M-35 is 6th magnitude star 5 Geminorum.
NOTE:This image was captured on the evening of January 23, 2018 and is an integration of five 6-minute exposures thru
the C-11 at f/2 using HyperStar and the
ZWO ASI 071 16 megapixel widefield imager. Guided,captured and combined
using Maxim DL5. Post processed in PhotoShop CS2, levels, curves, Gradient XTerminator.
GALAXY NGC-2903: This is a fine, bright barred spiral galaxy located in the constellation of Leo, just SW of the "Sickle" asterism.
It lies 30 million light years from earth and is 100,000 light years in diameter. Also shown in this image is the smaller spiral galaxy
NGC-2916 (lower LH corner of image) and the tiny 16th magnitude elliptical galaxy PGC-27115 (just directly to the left of NGC-2903).
NOTE: This image was taken on the evening of January 23, 2018, and is an integration of twelve 6-minute exposures through the C-11
at f/2 using HyperStar and the
ZWO-ASI-071 CMOS color imager. Guided, captured and combined using Maxim DL5 Pro, Post
processed using PhotoShop CS2, levels, curves, contrast, Gradient XTerminator and StarShrink.
A FIELD OF GALAXIES IN HYDRA: The galaxies captured in this image represent galaxies of varied size, distance and morphology.
Centered in the field is NGC-3923, a large, bright E-4 class elliptical galaxy. It shines at 10th magnitude and lies 80 million light years
from Earth. Southwest of it (lower right) lies the smaller E-2 ellliptical NGC-3904, which shines at 11th magnitude and lies at about the
same distance.  Northwest (upper right) lies the fainter face-on barred spiral galaxy UGCA-247, which lies at almost twice that distance.
To the northeast (upper left) lies the faint edge-on spiral UGCA-250, 13.5 magnitude, and at almost the same distance as UGCA-247.
This image was captured on the night of May 4, 2018 and is a composite of 5 six-minute exposures with the ZWO-ASI-071-MC
imager. Guided, captured and combined using Maxim DL5 Pro. Post processed using PhotoShop CS2.
NOTE: This image also shows
the new supernova in NGC-3923, cleearly visible about 4 arc minutes due north of the galaxy's nucleus.
VIRGO GALAXY CLUSTER & "MARKARIAN'S CHAIN": This image is centered between the so-called "Markarian's Chain" galaxy group, anchored by
the two large elliptical galaxies, M-84 & M-86, to the west (left) and the giant elliptical galaxy M-87 and its companions, to the east (right). There are over
35 galaxies captured in this frame. Their identifications may be seen in an annotated version of this image, found on the "CCD IMAGES" page under the
heading
Galaxy Groups.
NOTE: This image was taken on the evening of May 17, 2018 and is an integration of ten 6-minute exposures for 1 hour of data, using the
ZWO-ASI-071_MC camera. Guided, captured and combined using Maxim DL5 Pro. Post processed using PhotoShop CS2, levels, curves,
GradientXTerminator and StarShrink.
SPIRAL GALAXY M-100: Located on the border between Coma Berenices and Virgo, this face-on spiral galaxy is
the largest in the Coma/Virgo galaxy cluster. Discovered by Pierre Mechain in 1781 and added to his catalog by
Charles Messier a few weeks later. 11 other galaxies are also visible in this field.
NOTE: This image taken on June 5, 2018, and is an integration of thirteen 6-minute exposures for 1 hour and 18
minutes worth of data. Guided, captured and combined using Maxim DL5 Pro. Post-processed in PhotoShop CS2,
levels, curves, Carboni's Astro Tools, Gradient EXTerminator and StarShrink. Imaging camera was the Starlight
Express SXVR-H694-C.
M-101 (NGC-5457): This magnificent face-on spiral galaxy is located just above the handle of the Big Dipper. It is one of the finest
examples of a face-on Type Sc spiral galaxy. It lies at a distance of 21 million light years from earth. At this distance, its apparent visual
diameter of 26 arc minutes corresponds to an actual diameter of over 170,000 light years, making this galaxy over 50 percent larger than
our own Milky Way galaxy. M-101 has a mass of over 16
billion suns, a truly impressive object!
NOTE: This image is an integration of ten 6-minute sub-exposures through the C-11 at f/2 with the SXVR-H694C camera. Guided, captured
and combined using Maxim DL5. Post-processed using PhotoShop CS2, levels, curves,Gradient EXterminator and StarShrink.