Some photographs.

Here you will find some of my astro-photos, mostly taken in the days BC (Before CCD) but some are current. These have been digitised and subsequently enhanced. I've also included a few other pictures which you may find of some interest although they are not strictly astonomical.

This list is slowly growing (as promised) and I'll continue to put more on when I get the time. They are ordered in the order that they are added to the list, latest at the bottom.

The images are JPEG compressed and much lower resolution than the originals, but that is to be expected. 

Southern milky way (93Kb) This has to be the best region of the milky way - around the southern cross from eta carinae through to the pointers (Alpha and Beta Centaurus). Taken with a Pentax 50mm f/1·4 lens (stopped to f/2-2·8).

Sunset over the Warrumbungles (20Kb) Sunset from the catwalk of the AAT over the Warrumbungle ranges. I've seen many spectacular sunsets (and sunrises!) but they never come out on film as well as in real life. But the the hills makes for a good backdrop.

Moon and Venus (14Kb) And after sunset...

Lightning storm (25Kb) Sometimes after a spectacular sunset in summer a storm comes. Here is a portion of one such display.

Milky way (90Kb) The milky way rides high overhead in winter. Here's the nicest bit.

Lunar eclipse (17Kb) Here's a total lunar eclipse through my 20cm f/10 Newtonian. Nice image scale for this sort of thing, but the mounting wasn't up to it so it's a touch blurry.

Eta Carinae (55Kb) The Eta Carinae nebula is a splendid object both visually and photographically, but this shot doesn't really do it justice. Taken through my 20cm f/4·5 Newtonian for 20 minutes.

M42 (36Kb) When I took this shot 12 years ago I was rather pleased with it. Film technology has improved since then and I would expect any beginner to be able to do better. Taken through my 20cm f/4·5 Newtonian for 20 minutes.

The summer milky way (92Kb) I was able to borrow a super Nikon fisheye lens for a few hours. Unfortunately I didn't have the right film, nor much time, however the result is OK - it's just that this is really a rather booring stretch of the sky. It shows the milky way from Centaurus and Carina in the upper left to Orion and Taurus at lower right. The 2 Magellanic clouds are visible at lower left (with a meteor going between them). On the original you can just see the Rosette nebula and Barnard's loop in Orion, but they are difficult to see here.

The winter milky way (29Kb) I borrowed the super Nikon fisheye lens again. This time I had some slightly better film and a better patch of sky. You can see Carina and the southern cross and coalsack at the lower left (joins the above image at its upper left), right through the centre of the galaxy down to my northern horizon. Our galaxy is pretty nice from our vantage point.

My house and some clouds (29Kb) With the same fisheye lens I took a nice "daylight" picture of my house. When I show people this they first think it is a daylight picture...until they look a little more closely...

The LMC (55Kb) The LMC with a standard 50mm lens. The bright star Canopus can be seen on the lower left. The centre portion of this image is shown in more detail here (58Kb).

The LMC (52Kb) The LMC with a 179mm f/1·9 lens. This lens is from an old projector. It is fast, but has significant vignetting and poor off-axis images. However, it does produce some nice pictures. The "bar" of the galaxy can be seen as can much of the outlying structure. The "tarantula" nebula can be seen at the lower middle of the frame.

The SMC (46Kb) The SMC with the same 179mm f/1·9 lens. The relative size of the LMC and SMC can easily be seen. The globular cluster known as 47 Tuc is at the middle top of the frame.

Orion (41Kb) The Orion region through the same 179mm f/1·9 lens. M42 and its extensions can be seen, as can the "horsehead" and "flame" nebulae. It's just a shame this lens isn't a little better.

M8 & M20 region (35Kb) The milky way around M8 and M20 taken with the same 179mm f/1·9 lens.

Comet Hyakutake (16Kb) Hyakutake through my 20cm. Scanned from a print.

Comet Hyakutake (16Kb) Hyakutake through my 20cm the next night.

Comet Hyakutake (21Kb) Hyakutake through the 179mm f/1·9 lens.

My house from the air. (52Kb) Definitely not astronomical. Looking south towards my house and observatory in the early morning. The roll-off roof observatory is aligned E-W (like many megalithic monuments!)

My house from the air. (115Kb) A similar view to the above image, but the 2004 edition which shows the dome and extension to the skyshed.

A lightning movie (360Kb) Also not astronomical. My father has a video digitising card and so we cut down about 10 minutes of a nice storm into this 24 second compilation. The storm was some 40km away at the time, but I had a good vantage point. This is only ¼-frame - if you want the full-frame movie then contact me. It is 1·7Mb.

 Below are stills from two of the better flashes. The video is at 25fps and so each frame is 40msec later than the other. I find it amazing how different each frame is - the frames immediately before and after each sequence are blank. (Each frame is roughly 65Kb at 768×512 resolution.)

Flash 1: frame 1 frame 2 frame 3 frame 4 frame 5 frame 6 frame 7 frame 8 frame 9 frame 10 frame 11 frame 12 frame 13

Flash 2: frame 1 frame 2 frame 3 frame 4 frame 5 frame 6 frame 7 frame 8 frame 9 frame 10 frame 11 frame 12

Here are some Panoramas that I've created recently with the help of some commercial software. I'll show small thumnail views here; click on the image to view a larger version.

A view from the AAT catwalk one foggy morning just before sunrise. West (right) through south (centre) to near east (left).
fog in the valley

A complete 360° view from the AAT catwalk . West (left) through north, east and back to the west. Smoke from a small bush fire is visible to the east. An old photographic sequence taken in November 1986. The mountain top has changed a little since then with some telescopes departing and new ones appearing.
View from AAT catwalk

The total eclipse of the Sun in 2002 was viewed from Ceduna in South Australia and deserves it's own page.

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Page last updated 2004/05/23
Steven Lee