Andromeda Galaxy

Headed out to a Bortle 4 location for my first serious attempt at Andromeda Galaxy. The skies were supposed to be clear, but there were clouds passing through during the imaging sequence. I wasn’t sure how well the final image would come out since the moon created quite a bit of light pollution. That 72% waxing gibbous moon was illuminating the sky from overhead. I couldn’t even see the fainter stars in Orion that are usually visible in that location.

Overall, I’m quite satisfied with the final result. I used an 85mm lens because I only knew the general location of the Andromeda Galaxy. The unintentional bonus was the Triangulum Galaxy anchoring the other side of the image. I stacked 100 images at f/2.8 15s and ISO 400 in Sequator and edited in Photoshop with some help from Luminar and NIK.

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Wolf Moon Rising

I wanted to get another photo of the full moon rising over Lick Observatory. I adjusted my location based on my experience during the previous full moon. Unfortunately, the moon rose further north than last month. I guess that approximately is not good enough. Need to be more careful with the calculations next time.

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Waxing Gibbous Moon

The great conjunction was a bit of a let down. Clouds rolled in at twilight, and obscured the view. However, the day after was great! Another cold and clear night. Moon was nice and crisp.

Saturn and Jupiter are still quite close together. Was also able to capture four of Jupiter’s moons: Europa, Callisto, Io and Ganymede.

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Chang’e 5 Lunar Landing Site

This morning, I decided to search for the 嫦娥 5 (Cháng’é 5) landing site. The 嫦娥 5 landed at Mons Rümker in Oceanus Procellarum or Ocean of Storms. I marked the location with a white box. The USGS prepared a map of the moon for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) based on data from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. The key was locating the Plato crater along Mare Imbrium and then following down the L-shaped boot until reaching Mons Rümker right under the sole. You can use the excerpt from the USGS/NASA map for reference.

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Frost Moon Rising Over Lick Observatory

The full moon in November is called the Beaver Moon or the Frost Moon. I’ve been searching for a location to observe the moon rise over Lick Observatory on Mount Hamilton. From Foothills Park, the moon rose over Sunnyvale. I tried again from Mount Umunhum, but the moon was far to the south. This time, I came the closest. For the first time, I was happy enough to capture the moon and Lick Observatory in the same frame. Next time, I’ll try to adjust the location to get an even better alignment.

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Crescent Moon

38.8% Crescent Moon

38.8% waxing crescent moon. The moon had been setting early so I went out in the late afternoon while the sky was still blue. However, exposing for the moon darkened the skies.

38.8% Crescent Moon over Stanford Stadium

Another view of the crescent moon, but from later at night. I found a perspective where the moon was traveling over Stanford Stadium.

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Moon and Mars

The moon and the planet Mars.

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Mont Saint-Michel at Night

Mont Saint-Michel was an unbelievable experience. Once the tourists emptied out, the town quieted down for the night. This was a 15 second exposure that was timed around the shuttle bus that travels back-and-forth along (and vibrates) the bridge.

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Memorial Church and the Planets Saturn and Jupiter

Planetary Alignment

The Moon (99% waxing gibbous), accompanied by Saturn and Jupiter, rises above Memorial Church at Stanford University. In terms of lining up the moon with a building, visit Photo Ephemeris, which is pretty accurate. In retrospect, I should have consulted it beforehand. Instead, I used the augmented reality feature in PhotoPills, which was not as precise.

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Comet NEOWISE Rising at Dawn

Comet NEOWISE rising above the San Francisco bay. I love the soft pastels of the morning light, as well as the clear delineation between the night sky and the coming morning sun.

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