This was sufficiently low when it got dark that I had to start cutting the hedge back to get at it with the 100mm refractor in the main observatory. This scope with a DSLR at prime focus framed it well. (Click twice to enlarge fully)
Here’s Comet Jacques from last night. 20 one minute exposures stacked on the comet.
There are some colour gradients in the background that I haven’t been able to correct, I possibly need need better flat fields.
No trace of a tail in this image, though people have imaged a faint tail from darker sites.
I think this is the nicest dark-sky comet we have had fore a long time, possible since Holmes. It was just visible in 10×50 binoculars, and in a 100mm refractor it was a very nice sight.
Update: 7 August
On Richard Miles’ suggestion I tried radically stretching the image. I also inverted it and made it mono, and lo and behold, a tail is visible, to the right (west).
I had a busy night; seeing was unusually good for this location. Ian Sharp reported exceptional seeing in Sussex as well, but Damian Peach, in a different part of Sussex, reported poor seeing, strangely.
First row are RGB composites. Second row are the same data but presented using an LRGB process, which gives more contrasty results, but worse artefacts. Third row are Infra-red images at 742nm, with Callisto just emerged from occultation in the second one.
Here is an attempt at narrowband imaging with the 10″ f4.8 last night. The light frames total 115 minutes. The palette used is R and L = H alpha, G = 0III, B = SII. Almost all the nebula information is in the H alpha, there’s just a trace of SII emission and little trace of OIII, hence it’s basically red. Processing was in Nebulosity and Photoshop CS4 with Neat Image plugin. (Click to enlarge image)
Here’s my full disk from Saturday. Seeing was not that good.
There’s a lot of scattered light. This is due to the blocking filter. I’ve been finding that my Lunt blocking filters have gradually degraded over time, and are no longer transparent, but “crazed” on the surface of the larger glass component (the one towards the camera or eye). I wonder if anyone else has found this.
I managed to catch an astonishingly fast-moving prominence here. I imaged it for 1 minute runs at 5 minute intervals, but really this was too slow, it was changing so quickly, that shorter runs might have been better. It was moving visibly on screen, and 20 minutes after I first saw it it was dissipating into space. A rough calculation shows it was travelling of the order of 10,000 miles per minute, or 0.1% the speed of light. The frames are about 25% of the Sun’s diameter.