The Cygnus wall is finished, at last

The last time I did any work on the ” Wall ” part of the North America nebula, NGC 7000 was way back in June, then I captured the Wall in Ha light, but now the nights are drawing in, the sky is getting much darker now as the sun goes deeper below the horizon ( Astronomical twilight is when the center of the Sun is 18° below the horizon ) so as last night was clear I managed to collect the OIII and SII data to finish the Wall. The seeing was good as Cygnus is nearly overhead when it gets dark.

NGC7000 North American nebula, The Wall - Cygnus
NGC7000 North American nebula, The Wall – Cygnus

I captured as many 300 second exposures in each of the two filters as I could, I also had to perform a Meridian flip part way through capturing the SII data, The Meridian is an imaginary line, running north to south, directly overhead, at your observing location. When using a German equatorial mount you run the risk of the telescope hitting the mount tripod or pier, if the telescope is allowed to continue past this meridian line on the West side of the mount and falling ( counter weights rising ), this can cause damage to the the drive motors and gears so a ” flip ” or a 180° about turn is performed before this happens to put the telescope on the East side of the mount and rising ( CW’s falling ). This also has the effect of inverting the image as the telescope and camera are now essentially upside down compared to before the flip occured, as both the R.A axis and DEC axis rotated 180° – so you have to double check the image Framing, the APT image capture software I use has a framing mask tool that can be flipped to help in this. I had to stop imaging at about 5am, as once again the clouds rolled back in.

Once the data was collected I then proccessed it through Deep Sky Stacker and Photoshop.

The Wall, Cygnus
The Wall, Cygnus

I think it turned out quite well, hopefully I’ll get some more clear nights as I will soon be able to continue my Rosette nebula project, also Orion season is back.

I was away camping week before last, at a small campsite in Bridgetown, Exmoor not far from Dunkery beacon. The campsite lies beside the river Exe, I took my DSLR with me this time and got a couple of nice shots of the night sky as well as the stunning views a round abouts, however the site sits in the bottom of a deep valley with tall trees on either side so the view of the sky is rather limited.

A truely beautiful dark sky, I really wish my observatory was under it, but on top of one of the hills would be best. 


6 thoughts on “The Cygnus wall is finished, at last”

  1. It was worth the wait!! It was certainly worth the wait. Did I just say it was worth the wait? Brilliant image. You have to be well chuffed with that one. You really are up there with the big boys. (And if the winning picture from AP of the year is anything to go by, you’re streets ahead.) You’ve produced some great images before but I have to say this tops the lot, A total stunner, Keep going!
    You and J stay safe!


  2. Congratulations, Will. What an awesome image!

    Am I right in understanding this is the “Central America” section of the nebula?

    I’ve never experienced a meridian flip. I’ve always been careful to avoid it, so I have not had a full understanding of how it would affect my images in SharpCap.

    I don’t like the idea of a 180 degree image flip, so I’ll just keep a sharp eye out for potential collisions.


    1. Hi Roger, yes this part supposedly represents Mexico and Central America ?. I try to avoid meridian flips too, but when the object is virtually overhead when it gets dark enough to image – you just can not avoid it, however when the two sets of images ( upright and upside down ) are ran through Deepsky stacker, they get registered and automatically flipped then stacked correctly.

      Liked by 1 person

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