The Science and Nature Journal has decided to join the space race, in a most modest way, by employing our own telescope and using it for astrophotography. We intend to share our work with our readers for their enjoyment, and as an instructional tool for students. We also hope we can gain enthusiasm for amateur astronomers and stargazers who wish to do the same.
Our telescope, a Meade ETX-90EC (Electronic Control) was purchased over 25 years ago. It is a Maksutov Cassegrain telescope. Its 90mm lens has a 1250mm focal length with an f= 13.8 capability. Its guidance system is a Meade Autostar product. Our present camera is a Canon EOS Rebel XS. The equipment is supported by a super-heavy tripod that is also a product of Meade telescopes.
We intend to focus on the moon, the earth’s natural satellite, first, as our equipment would be ideal for this purpose. My son, and our photographer, Joseph O’Donnell will arrange to have the photos collected and arranged for us as the present Canon equipment is a crop camera. Pictures of the set-up is included for this story.
The magazine hopes to upgrade our system to a mirrorless camera in the future for easier photo manipulation as well as a laptop computer for Astro programing. A larger telescope purchase in the future is desirable for planetary and deep-sky observation as well. A laser pointing guide scope may also be on the agenda for future projects, too.
We hope that our readers will follow our progress as we take our first baby steps on our new adventure and share our work with you.