Post your Remote Telescope images here and join in the discussion.
Ben Cartwright SASS
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#### TSS Photo of the Day

Welcome to the world of REMOTE IMAGING! I decided to start a thread dedicated to the world of remote imaging observing using subscription scopes. Remote scope users are often looked down on by purists but they shouldn’t be. There are many reasons that people use subscription scopes. Some are health challenged or have city skies and cannot travel, like myself. Others because they want to image in the southern hemisphere but will never get there. What is your reason?
The variety of subscription observatories that are popping up is as diverse as the restaurants in a town, from fast food to fancy restaurants and their prices plans and costs are as diverse.
I investigated many remote observatories and tried several before settling on the SLOOH remote observatories with setups in the Canary Islands and Chile. I have been using them for about 3 years now and have gotten hundreds of hours of images. One thing that is unique about SLOOH is that you can watch your imaging run is real time, you get to watch the image develop on your screen as the scope gathers more light.
I am also experimenting with the Insight Observatory remote scopes. www.insightobservatory.com (external link)

I will be posting thoughts and images from my sessions with the remote scopes and welcome others to do the same and will try to answer any questions that come up.
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Ben Cartwright SASS
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

I enjoy using remote subscription imaging especially living in a Bortle 8 zone, which I why I do mostly solar. Also I have health issues and like my sleep. You get to use very nice scopes from dark sky sites.

Here is my impression on remote imaging. As I say I use it almost daily and check their solar scope daily

The downside? It can get expensive.

Some sites allow more control than others, for example iTelescope from what I have found has the most control over scope and camera and what filters are used. Slooh has "total" control of the scope but limited control of the camera and filters. Roboscope and Insight you request a target and they determine the best time to image it, Roboscope does give total control over exposure and filters as well as darks.

Slooh costs me $300 a year, that is for unlimited imaging runs up to 50 minutes at a time as well as up to 50 minutes of piggybacking on someone else's "mission" (imaging run). Each run is 5 minutes, except on the 20 inch which are 10 minute runs. you can schedule 5 at a time, either in a row or scattered through that night or the next 7 days so if you want a specific object and want to do a 50 minute imaging run you schedule 5 missions on the 20" in a row, to guarantee the time you often have to schedule for the next evening. once you schedule your 5 missions you cannot do another one until the first finishes but as soon as it runs you can schedule another. Other remote scopes I have used are Roboscopes - anywhere from$18-$30 an hour - I spent$18 there you only get fits

Insight Observatory - anywhere from $15 to$25 for 20 MINUTES, that is $45 to$75 an hour! I spent 15 there, the give a JPG, TIF and fits files, they are well processed and for that price they should be. Both Roboscopes and Insight don't allow you to schedule the scope or control it or watch it in real time you have to submit your request and then up to 30 days later you get the results. My take away is that the images might be nice BUT I am not controlling the scope or the time of capture or dealing with the weather and satellites, I simply choose a target and in 1 to 4 weeks I get the images. I might as well download them from the Hubble or the net. With Slooh the only thing I don't do is set up the scope. I have to decide on the target or the coordinates, then I have to determine when the object will be visible from the observatory - trying to get it just before or just after the meridian, then have to look at the weather, the wind clouds dust humidity and moon light. can even use Stellarium to determine when satellites might be passing through the field of view. Then decide what filters to use, either LRGB or just L, and then the time of the exposures from 5 minutes to 50 minutes. Finally the image is taken in real time, I can watch the image as it develops on the screen, can even see if it gets a plane or satellite or what is aggravating wind blown stars. Then I am given the raw fits images for my to work. Slooh does provide a PNG image to give a rough idea and I do mean rough, of what you captured but it is not a great an image. It isn't a finished image at a guess I have done at least 400 hours of imaging in the last year using SLOOH Ferengi Rule of Acquisition #59 Free advice is seldom cheap Ben Cartwright SASS Jupiter Ambassador Articles: 0 Posts: 261 Joined: Fri May 17, 2019 10:39 am 1 Location: SE New England Contact: #### TSS Photo of the Day ### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread I have more Astro gear (as well as 5 Canon EOS DSLRS 5D, 5D4,6D2,7D2 and 90D and 20 lenses up to 150-600) than I need. from my 80mm Stellarvue APO to my 8" Edge as well as access to the Seagrave Observatory ( I have the keys) in Rhode Island where we have a 12" and 16" Meade classics LX200's but as a stroke survivor I like my sleep and hate the cold (it is warmer today 17 degrees wakeup temp). I agree 100% with people using remote imaging, it is not cheating. My scope is setup on a patio with a Telegizmos cover on it, people who like you roll your scope out or my who keep it setup on a tripod should look on friends with observatories as cheating since they don't have to setup and align each session. Especially those who open up and then run the scope from their PC inside the house! I have started trying the Insight Observatory, no subscription charged by the minute (40 to $60 an hour) and 6 large scopes (NM, Nambia, Chile) they are relatively new and based here on Cape Cod and respond to PMs on FB fast) I will continue to try them BUT I really enjoy SLOOH, they have 9 scopes (3 in Chile) they have many of the same cameras as other remote scopes but are truly remote no one at the sites. They sometimes have issues with dead pixels etc. but they resolve issues when the can. The impression I get is that it takes more work to get a super image from SLOOH than from the other remote observatories, but I like that challenge. The BIG thing about SLOOH is that you can schedule your imaging run (they call them missions) and then you can watch it in real time as the scope captures the image and see if there is wind movement or clouds or a satellite, you can't do that with the other scopes. Recently they have opened to the educational world so reserving scope time the same evening is sometimes tough but if all the time slots to control the scope are full I just reserve the next day, you can reserve up to 7 days ahead. The next day you get your fits files that are calibrated and ready for processing. The big thing is that their ASTRONOMER level is$300 a year for unlimited scope time. I estimate I scheduled 400 hours of missions last year, that is 75 cents per hour!
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Ben Cartwright SASS
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

Messier 101 spiral galaxy 21 million light years away in the constellation Ursa Major. I took this using the SLOOH remote observatory by controlling the telescope over the internet over the course of 2 years. Processed in Astro Pixel Processor and Lightroom.
95 subs, 36 Lums @ 50 sec, 20 R 21 G 18 B all at 25 sec. Spring 2019 Spring 2020 and this Feb.

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Ben Cartwright SASS
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

Ferengi Rule of Acquisition #59

Ben Cartwright SASS
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

The Gabriela Mistral Nebula - Southern Hemisphere, imaged using the SLOOH 17" Planewave at the Chile Observatory
24 subs LRGB processed in APP and LR/PS

NGC 3324 is an open cluster in the southern constellation Carina, located northwest of the Carina Nebula (NGC 3372) at a distance of 7,560 ly (2,317 pc) from Earth. It is closely associated with the emission nebula IC 2599, also known as Gum 31. The two are often confused as a single object, and together have been nicknamed the "Gabriela Mistral Nebula" due to its resemblance to the Chilean poet. NGC 3324 was first catalogued by James Dunlop in 1826

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Ben Cartwright SASS
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

Messier 100 and 5 other galaxies. there are at least 3 unlabeled galaxies as well.
Imaged with the ATEO-1 16" f/3.5 astrograph at the Insight Observatory New Mexico. 20 minute LRGB exposure

Messier 100 (also known as NGC 4321) is a grand design intermediate spiral galaxy in the southern part of the mildly northern Coma Berenices. It is one of the brightest and largest galaxies in the Virgo Cluster and is approximately 55 million light-years from our galaxy

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pakarinen
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

Ben Cartwright SASS wrote: Sun Feb 21, 2021 5:54 pm I might as well download them from the Hubble or the net.
I need to carefully reread your post and do more research, but that’s the jewel in the lotus for me.

Sounds like SLOOH might be the best match.
Yes, I am Chuck Finley, but all my friends call me "Wassan the Horrible"

Orion ST120, Meade ST80, Skywatcher 90mm Mak
Twilight 1 / Astro Devices encoders / Nexus II / Manfrotto 475B / Skywatcher AZ5
Nikon Aculon 10x50 / Orion Giant VIew 15x70 / US Navy 1944 Mark 30 7x50 binos

Can't get enough... of that funky stuff.
Ben Cartwright SASS
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

pakarinen wrote: Mon Feb 22, 2021 12:22 am
Ben Cartwright SASS wrote: Sun Feb 21, 2021 5:54 pm I might as well download them from the Hubble or the net.
I need to carefully reread your post and do more research, but that’s the jewel in the lotus for me.

Sounds like SLOOH might be the best match.
I prefer SLOOH, the other remote observatories can give you a better image but at a cost, that cost is cash. on one sight they show an image of the Witch Head you can download, it was the result of 10 hours of imaging depending on the scope that can be \$300, that is the cost of a SLOOH Astronomer membership for an entire year!
Since the sessions on SLOOH are 5 minutes (or 10 minutes on the 20") you need to build up a lot of sessions to get 2 1/2 hours of each color filter, but it is easy to do it just takes time. as I mentioned before you can run 30 minutes of sessions at a time (50 min on the 20") and as soon as one runs you can schedule another so in a perfect world you could easily get 1 1/2 to 2 hours a night. In reality often you can get 10 sessions in a night but more likely 5 (25 minutes).

Here is one of my SLOOH images

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Ben Cartwright SASS
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

OH AND ONE OTHER THING YOU CAN DO THAT NO OTHER REMOTE SCOPE ALLOWS THAT I KNOW OF

you can simply watch the sky on Slooh as one of the scopes slews to an object it slowly develops as you watch and then you can see it gather each color filter and get to be a final image. It is really neat, it is like observing with your own scope. You are watching the sky in real time!

ALSO they have a Lunt LS60 solar scope that if it is clear is showing the sun in real time in HA
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

Thanks for all the info.

BABO
"In lumine tuo videbimus lumen."

Scopes: Celestron SCT C8 / Williams Optics 66mm APO

Mounts: Orion Atlas EQ-G / Celestron AVX

Cameras: Fujifilm X-A1 (modded) / Fuji X-A2 (not modded) / Orion StarShoot Auto Guider
pakarinen
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

Ben Cartwright SASS wrote: Mon Feb 22, 2021 12:56 am It is really neat, it is like observing with your own scope. You are watching the sky in real time!
That sounds much more appealing to me than requesting a shot and then getting a file sometime later. Got some thinkin' to do...
Yes, I am Chuck Finley, but all my friends call me "Wassan the Horrible"

Orion ST120, Meade ST80, Skywatcher 90mm Mak
Twilight 1 / Astro Devices encoders / Nexus II / Manfrotto 475B / Skywatcher AZ5
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Can't get enough... of that funky stuff.
bobharmony
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

Jeff - I am glad you have found a way to continue enjoying astrophotography. I know you have been struggling with local lighting horrors for years and health concerns can also play a role in how to get things done. You have some very nice results for your efforts!

Cheating? I don't think so. It's no more cheating than using a digital camera over a film version. It is just technology that is available, and it is a plus that it allows us to reach parts of the celestial sphere that are out of reach from home base.

Bob
Hardware: Celestron C6-N w/ Advanced GTmount, Baader MK iii CC, Orion ST-80, Canon 60D (unmodded), Nikon D5300 (modded), Orion SSAG
Software: BYE, APT, PHD2, DSS, PhotoShop CC 2020, StarTools, Cartes du Ciel, AstroTortilla

pakarinen
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

Maybe any debate comes down to, " How hands-on do you want to be?" or "How hands on are you able to be?"

One of my other hobbies is model railroading (currently on hiatus) and there's a spectrum of hands-on involvement. Some people lay track by hand with itty-bitty spikes, others buy pre-made track at the hobby shop, and there are others who contract people to build entire layouts for them. I don't see any path as "cheating", just a personal choice of what you want / like to do.
Yes, I am Chuck Finley, but all my friends call me "Wassan the Horrible"

Orion ST120, Meade ST80, Skywatcher 90mm Mak
Twilight 1 / Astro Devices encoders / Nexus II / Manfrotto 475B / Skywatcher AZ5
Nikon Aculon 10x50 / Orion Giant VIew 15x70 / US Navy 1944 Mark 30 7x50 binos

Can't get enough... of that funky stuff.
Astrovetteman
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

Here's 4 different, even though they're the same object, views of the Tarantula Nebula that I got from DSW-Chile. I posted the full sized version of this several weeks ago. Since then I did a remake and then, just for fun, I started cropping it at different amounts. I didn't do any star reduction or noise reduction on this and all the crops are just crops of the original (#1)....I just wanted to see how the data would stand up to various levels of "zooming in". #1 is the full size image, #2 is about a 40% crop to frame the Nebula, #3 is about another 40% crop to just show the nebula, and finally #4 is about a 50% crop of just the central clusters at the center of the nebula. IMHO, I think it stood up pretty well!
This is just an example of what you can get with "remote imaging". Granted, it's 40+ hours of TOT (HSOLRGB) taken under pristine skies with TOA-150/FLI ML16200 on the most costly service I subscribe to but you can get really good results with other services.
Hope ya like em!
Tom
#1 ORIGINAL
#2 1st CROP
#3 CROP of CROP
#4 CROP of CROP of CROP
Scopes:TeleVue NP127is, TeleVue TV-85, Celestron C8 EdgeHD
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Ben Cartwright SASS
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

pakarinen wrote: Mon Feb 22, 2021 3:33 pm Maybe any debate comes down to, " How hands-on do you want to be?" or "How hands on are you able to be?"

One of my other hobbies is model railroading (currently on hiatus) and there's a spectrum of hands-on involvement. Some people lay track by hand with itty-bitty spikes, others buy pre-made track at the hobby shop, and there are others who contract people to build entire layouts for them. I don't see any path as "cheating", just a personal choice of what you want / like to do.
What scale do you model in? I belong to a train club here in Mass, we do the NH in the transition era and use code 80 flextrack, yup flextrack. My home layout is the Lehigh Valley in the Conrail conversion era (HO scale) all code 100 and DCC a 10x16 O shaped layout with a removable duck under.

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Ben Cartwright SASS
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

bobharmony wrote: Mon Feb 22, 2021 3:02 pm Jeff - I am glad you have found a way to continue enjoying astrophotography. I know you have been struggling with local lighting horrors for years and health concerns can also play a role in how to get things done. You have some very nice results for your efforts!

Cheating? I don't think so. It's no more cheating than using a digital camera over a film version. It is just technology that is available, and it is a plus that it allows us to reach parts of the celestial sphere that are out of reach from home base.

Bob
Agree with the digital camera analogy, I routinely shoot 600-800 shots out my den window of birds on the bird feeders at 10 FPS, delete all but a couple, you couldn't do that with film unless you are rich
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Ben Cartwright SASS
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

Astrovetteman wrote: Mon Feb 22, 2021 4:41 pm Here's 4 different, even though they're the same object, views of the Tarantula Nebula that I got from DSW-Chile. I posted the full sized version of this several weeks ago. Since then I did a remake and then, just for fun, I started cropping it at different amounts. I didn't do any star reduction or noise reduction on this and all the crops are just crops of the original (#1)....I just wanted to see how the data would stand up to various levels of "zooming in". #1 is the full size image, #2 is about a 40% crop to frame the Nebula, #3 is about another 40% crop to just show the nebula, and finally #4 is about a 50% crop of just the central clusters at the center of the nebula. IMHO, I think it stood up pretty well!
This is just an example of what you can get with "remote imaging". Granted, it's 40+ hours of TOT (HSOLRGB) taken under pristine skies with TOA-150/FLI ML16200 on the most costly service I subscribe to but you can get really good results with other services.
Hope ya like em!
Tom

Very nice! I am impressed with the colors.

I am sticking with SLOOH mainly for the cost. Eventually they are hoping to have an observatory in Abu Dubai in the Middle East so about 22 hours of imaging will be available
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pakarinen
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### Re: The unofficial Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

Ben Cartwright SASS wrote: Mon Feb 22, 2021 5:08 pm What scale do you model in? I belong to a train club here in Mass, we do the NH in the transition era and use code 80 flextrack, yup flextrack. My home layout is the Lehigh Valley in the Conrail conversion era (HO scale) all code 100 and DCC a 10x16 O shaped layout with a removable duck under.
HO, Code 80, CN modern day. My one true love is ATSF, but it's long gone.

I tried N for awhile, but the size of the print on cars and locos was too small for me and I never liked the Slinky look of a train with Kadee couplers. Kato engines ran like fine watches though. DCC seemed like witchcraft to me - really couldn't get enthusiastic enough to mess with / debug it or deal with the extra cost of engines. The technology is probably much better now.

Just received a Telescope Live OneClick shot. Haven't really look at it yet, but I should b/c my free trial ends in a few days.
Yes, I am Chuck Finley, but all my friends call me "Wassan the Horrible"

Orion ST120, Meade ST80, Skywatcher 90mm Mak
Twilight 1 / Astro Devices encoders / Nexus II / Manfrotto 475B / Skywatcher AZ5
Nikon Aculon 10x50 / Orion Giant VIew 15x70 / US Navy 1944 Mark 30 7x50 binos

Can't get enough... of that funky stuff.
pakarinen
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### Re: The Remote Telescope/Observatory Thread

Ben Cartwright SASS wrote: Sun Feb 21, 2021 5:54 pm One thing that is unique about SLOOH is that you can watch your imaging run is real time, you get to watch the image develop on your screen as the scope gathers more light.
I've been surfing around the Insight site and while Insight looks more straightforward to me than Slooh, watching the image integration could be interesting, assuming I could stay awake.

I don't think iTelescope, Sky West, or Telescope Live are a good match for me.
Yes, I am Chuck Finley, but all my friends call me "Wassan the Horrible"

Orion ST120, Meade ST80, Skywatcher 90mm Mak
Twilight 1 / Astro Devices encoders / Nexus II / Manfrotto 475B / Skywatcher AZ5
Nikon Aculon 10x50 / Orion Giant VIew 15x70 / US Navy 1944 Mark 30 7x50 binos

Can't get enough... of that funky stuff.