Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San ...
  • No tags were found...

Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San ...

Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 1

2009 Hubble Award - Tony HallasTony's astrophotographic career can be summarized as a series of firsts. For example, startingout over 25 years ago, he was one of the first to produce film-emulsion images using anautoguider. Tony was also one of the first to champion the use of stacked astronomical imagesas a method that improved the final picture's signal to noise.Particularly during the early years of digital astrophotography, Tony's pictures were the referenceto which digital imagers compared their images. Finally, to many in the community, Tony'simages remain the first among equals in their aesthetic quality, composition and color!Tony's astro-imaging experience started over 25 years ago when he discovered amateur astronomy by accident. A paleyellow "star" turned out to be Saturn and he could see the rings! Hooked, he endured manual guiding of film images thatbecame the envy of the amateur world. When the ST-4 was introduced by SBIG in 1989, Tony was one of the first to getone, but he remained a loyal film imager using the ST-4 for many years to guide his incredible film astrophotographs.As CCD imaging took , the best early results were often judged byhow well they compared to a Hallas film shot of the same object.Tony's astrophotos were often considered the gold standardagainst which other images were compared. Eventually, Tony shiftedto CCD imaging. Since those early days, Tony has participated in,and mastered, three eras of astro-imaging: film only, film plus computerenhancement, and the CCD era.His first telescope was a Meade 8" SCT. Working his way through avariety of systems over the years, including a Meade 10" SCT, a CelestronC-14, a 10" custom Newtonian, a 14.5" Newtonian, a 16" Newtonian,a 5" f/6 A-P refractor, a 6" f/7.7 Astro-Physics refractor, a 7" f/7Astrophysics refractor, and a 14.5" f/8 custom cassegrain. Tony currentlyuses a 14.5" f/8 RCOSCC and just recently, a TeleVue 4" f/5.4refractor, a Stellervue 6" f/8 refractor, and an 8” Astro-Physics f/8 refractor.The Hubble Award is presented to those individualswho have demonstrated significantand sustained contributions to the astrophotographycommunity over a period ofyears. Production of fine images is only onecriteria but certainly not the most importantfactor that is considered. Popularizationthrough public outreach, technical innovation,scientific contributions and selfless directsupport to other imagers also represent keycriteria that justify designation as a HubbleAward recipient.Final selection is made by a unanimous voteof the AIC Board of Directors.Although he is well known as an astrophotographer, his real profession is custom photographic printing. Tony's experienceincludes a Professional Bachelor of Arts Degree in Photography, apprenticeship for years in one of the leading customphoto labs in the US, and successfully founding and running his own custom photo lab in Ventura, California. TheHallas' photo lab was the largest in Ventura County, with clients like Amgen and Patagonia among many others. Tony'swife, Daphne, also spent many years working in photo labs and has a gift for the computer medium.Tony has combined all this experience from film to digital to become one of the best astrophotographers in the world today.He popularized the mechanical "stacking" techniques and continues to "push the envelope" in the CCD medium.His images are recognized by their depth, artistic composition and vibrant color. His images have been selectedseveral times as NASA's astrophoto of the day. Tony has been a featured speaker at numerous star parties, conferencesand forums, including the Advanced Imaging Conference.In 2001, Tony received the prestigious Clyde Tombaugh award for technical innovation in astronomy at Riverside TelescopeMaker's Conference. As a "terrestrial" photographer entering a contest sponsored by the City of Miami, Florida,Tony took First and Second Prizes, Exhibitor's Choice, and Best of Show. His images have been published in numerousmedia: National Geographic, The Smithsonian Magazine, US News & World Report, Newsweek, Geo Magazine, as wellas being featured in the LA Times, both Disneyland's, several book covers and countless images in astronomy magazinesincluding cover photographs. His work also appears in many advertisements as he is represented by major artagencies.Cover Photo: The Hercules Cluster of Galaxies by Tony Hallas - APOD July 16, 2009The LRGB image of Abell 2151 on the cover was taken by Tony Hallas with a QSI 583ws camera using an Astro-Physics 8" APO refractor at f/8. Total exposure time was 11 hours of luminance using 33 20-minute subexposuresplus 140 minutes each through Astrodon E-Series Gen 2 red, green and blue filters using 20-minute subexposures.Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 2

Technology ShowcaseBooth 1:Booth 2:Booth 3:Booth 4:Booth 5:Booth 6:Booth 7:Booth 8:Booth 9:Booth 10:Booth 11:Booth 12:Booth 13:Booth 14:Booth 15:Booth 16:Booth 17:Booth 18:Booth 19:Booth 20:Booth 21:Booth 22:Booth 23:Booth 24:Booth 25:Booth 26:Booth 27:Booth 28:Booth 29:Booth 30:Mathis InstrumentsOrion Telescopes & BinocularsAstro Haven EnterprisesCelestronAtikNew Mexico Skies Astronomy EnclaveMount Lemmon SkyCenterAstro-PhysicsPlaneWave InstrumentsOceanside Photo & TelescopeLightBucketsChronosMount, Inc.Apogee InstrumentsRC Optical SystemsStarlight Xpress Ltd.Astrodon ImagingDC-3 DreamsFinger Lakes InstrumentationCCDWareSBIGSoftware BisqueAstro HutechFishcamp EngineeringCeravolo Optical SystemsQuantum Scientific ImagingDiffraction LimitedOptec Inc.AstroTracOfficina StellareWoodland Hills Camera and TelescopesAdvanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 4

2009 Meeting AgendaSCHEDULE EVENT SPEAKERFriday, October 307:00AM- 8:30AMFriday Workshop Registration and Continental Breakfast8:30AM- 10:00AM Workshop Track 1Using theSkyXCCDStack Image ProcessingImproved Auto guidingStephen BisqueAdam BlockCraig Stark10:15AM- 11:45AM Workshop Track 2Photoshop for new and intermediate users Warren KellerCCDAutopilot- a user's perspectiveImage Processing with a MasterNarrow Band Image ProcessingHidden Photoshop TechniquesFrank Barnes IIITony HallasKen CrawfordAlan EricksonAravind Krishnaswamy11:45AM- 1:30PMBox Lunch (included with registration fee)Technology Showcase is open1:45PM- 3:15PM Workshop Track 3ACP- a user's perspectiveCCDStack Image ProcessingImproved Auto guidingHidden Photoshop TechniquesGeorge SjobergAdam BlockCraig StarkAlan EricksonAravind Krishnaswamy3:30PM- 5:00PM Workshop Track 4CCDCommander- a user's perspectiveImage Processing with a MasterNarrow Band Image ProcessingMichael SherickTony HallasKen CrawfordPhotoshop for new and intermediate users Warren Keller5:00PM- 6:00PM6:00PM- 7:30PM7:00PM- 9:00PMSaturday General Session RegistrationTechnology Showcase is openFounding Sponsor Reception (this is an optional event- ticket required)Technology Showcase is open(please note: the Technology Showcase is closed during workshops and weekend general sessions except as noted )Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 5

SCHEDULE EVENT SPEAKERSaturday, October 317:00AM- 8:15AM8:15AM- 8:45AMGeneral Session Registration and Continental BreakfastWelcome, Opening Remarks and AIC FounderRecognition8:45AM- 9:45AM 2009 Hubble Award Lecture Tony Hallas9:45AM- 10:30AM10:30AM- 11:00AMVisual Elements in art andastrophotographyBreakTechnology Showcase is open11:00AM- 11:45AM Wide Field Imagery Tom Davis11:45AM- 1:00PMLunch (included with registration fee)Technology Showcase is openKen Crawford, President- AICSteve Mandel, AIC FounderDrs. Letty & Jerry Bonnel1:00PM- 1:45PM Founding Sponsors Brad Erhorn, RCOSMichael Barber, SBIGStephen Bisque, Software Bisque1:45PM- 2:45PM Pro-Am Collaboration Dr. David Martinez-Delgado (IAC)2:45PM- 3:15PMBreakTechnology Showcase is open3:15PM- 4:00PM Recipe for Eye Candy R. Jay GaBany4:00PM- 4:45PM Data Mining, part 2 Paul Mortfield4:30PM- 6:00PM6:00PM- 7:30PM7:30PM- 9:00PMTechnology Showcase is openDinner (included with registration fee)Technology Showcase is openSunday, November 17:00AM- 8:00AMContinental Breakfast8:00AM- 8:45AM Astrophotography on a Budget Craig Stark8:45AM- 9:30AM High Resolution Image Processing Volker Wendel9:30AM- 9:50AM9:50AM- 10:20AM10:20AM- 11:30AMBreakTechnology Showcase is openDoor prize drawing (you must be present to win)Technology Showcase is openConference Adjournment(please note: the Technology Showcase is closed during workshops and weekend general sessions except as noted )Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 6

Frank BarnesAstrophotographerwww.skyimager.comUsing CCDAuto Pilot- A personal perspectiveThis workshop will demonstrate the robust capabilities of CCDAuto-Pilot4's interface and control functions. Gathering data on multipleor single targets, in one session or over multiple session will be discussed.Setup, initialization, software and hardware options, focusing,guiding parameters, target and calibration frames acquisition,and much more will be covered.Frank has a BSEE from USC and designs and writes CommunicationsManagement software. He and two partners own Carolina Technology Associates, LLC which has customersin the Southeastern US and Canada.Frank operates observatories in Rock Hill, SC, at Twinoaks Observatory; in New Mexico at world famous NewMexico Skies and in northern California at Sierra-Remote Observatories - Blue Sky Observatory. If theweather is good in all the locations, he will be running 5 robotic systems on any given night, all being controlledby CCDAutoPilot4. Frank has been imaging with various equipment since 1999, and has been usingCCDAutoPilot since Version 1 was released.Medusa Nebula (AKA PK205+14.1)RCOS 10" Astrograph, SBIG ST-10XME, -20°LRGB - 640m : 230m : 270m : 330m - 64 x 600s L, 23 x 600s R, 27 x 600s G, 33 x 600s BAdvanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 7

Steve BisqueFounder & President, Software Bisquewww.bisque.comAn Introduction to theSkyXThis presentation will demonstrate the latest version of theSky-TheSkyX Professional Edition.Retooled from the ground up, Software Bisque has added a hostof exciting features the world's favorite desktop/ telescope controlastronomy software.Virtually every feature has been redesigned to emphasize ease ofuse:Mac or Window operating system supportScreen refreshes as fast as your graphics hardware will allow.Improved telescope control- features native telescope driverswith extensive driver support.Full T-Point integration.Stephen Bisque is president and founder of Software Bisque. Stephen is currently one of the leadprogrammers working on TheSkyX, and is closely involved in the design of robotic telescopemounts. For over 25 years he has enjoyed marrying the latest computer and telescope technologieswith TheSky family of software produ cts.Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 8

Adam BlockAuthor, AstrophotographerPublic Observing Programs Coordinator,Mt. Lemmon Sky's workshop will demonstrate processing techniques inCCDStack and Photoshop that leverage threshold brightness valuesand layer masks.Adam operates the public observing programs at the Mount LemmonSkyCenter ( - a new science facility northof Tucson featuring the 32-inch Schulman telescope.Literally dozens of Adam's images have been published in variousbooks such as: A Year in the Life of the Universe, Cosmic Butterflies,Beyond Earth, National Geographic, Encyclopedia of Amateur Astronomy,The Caldwell Objects, Night Wonders, and hundreds of his images have been published in magazines includingAstronomy Magazine, Sky & Telescope, Coleum, Astronomie, Scientific American, Ciel&espace, and The PracticalAstronomer.Adam has been an invited speaker at various conferences and seminars on imaging, including the Advanced ImagingConference in San Jose, the East Coast Conference on Advanced Imaging, EPOCH 2007, North East Advanced ImagingConference, Riverside Telescope Makers Convention, Astronomical League Convention, Imaging The Sky Conference,and more. NASA has selected Adam's images as Astrophoto of the Day 34 times, and Space.Com has selectedover 20 of his images for their image of the day. Special editions such as Astronomy's "Atlas of the Stars" andSky & Telescope's "Beautiful Universe" and 10 book covers also use Adam's images. Many of these images weretaken during Adam's time administering the Advanced Observing Program at the Visitor's Center at Kitt Peak.The Trifid Nebula in Stars and Dust - APOD July 7, 200924-inch RCOS, SBIG STL11000 CCD, Custom Scientific filters, RGB = 80:50:55 minutesAdvanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 9

Dr. Letty Wilson BonnellAffiliate Assistant Professor,Loyola College, MarylandwithDr. Jerry BonnellAstrophysicist/Staff Scientist -Compton Gamma Ray Observatory, Science SupportCenter, Editor- Astronomy Picture of the Day (APOD) Elements and Principles of Design in Astronomical ImagesIn this presentation the Bonnells will look at the fundamentals of visualform in familiar works of art and see how they can be applied to composingand processing astronomical images. These fundamentals fall into two basic categories: visual elements(such as line, shape, color, etc.) and principles of design (balance, contrast, repetition and rhythm, etc.). Whatworked for Leonardo can work for astrophotographers, too!Dr. Letty Bonnell received her Art History doctorate from The University of Maryland, College Park in 2002. Herdissertation, Elephants and Hunters, Diviners and Oracles: Yorùbá Carving in Bone and Ivory, is based on researchcarried out in Lagos, Ìbàdàn, Ifè, Òsogbo and Öwö, Nigeria, during the summer of 1998. Dr. Ekpo Eyo, a noted Nigerianarcheologist and art historian, invited Letty to be contributing editor for his latest book, From Shrines to Showcases:Masterpieces of Nigerian Art, which was published this spring by the Federal Ministry of Information andCommunication, Nigeria. She is currently editing a concordance of African art for an exhibition and catalog mastermindedby a colleague, photography historian Wendy Grossman: Man Ray, African Art, and the Modernist Lens.Letty has been teaching full time at Loyola College in Maryland as an Affiliate Assistant Professor since 2002, offeringcourses on the arts of Africa, African-Americans, and contemporary art, as well as art appreciation for students inthe Elementary Education program.At Loyola she also supervises andmaintains visual resources for theFine Arts department.Dr. Jerry Bonnell joined NASA GoddardSpace Flight Center in 1988and enjoyed working on the CosmicBackground Explorer (COBE) andInternational Ultraviolet Explorer(IUE) projects. Since 1992 he hasbeen a member of the ComptonGamma-Ray Observatory (CGRO)Science Support Center (SSC) staffin the Laboratory for High EnergyAstrophysics (LHEA).His research efforts have involvedmultiwavelength studies of gammarayselected blazars and studies ofthe time histories and spectral evolutionof cosmic gamma-ray bursts.APOD's 11th "Birthday" (June 16, 2006) by Herman SerranoA number of APOD images are featured in this collage of a fantasy sky above Mars.Dr. Bonnell is also one of the editorsof the NASA Astronomy Picture ofthe Day (APOD) website.Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 10

Ken CrawfordAstrophotographerwww.imagingdeepsky.comNarrowband Imaging taken to the next level-Six Filter Narrowband Imagingdig out all of the details in your images.Ken Crawford will show you how to take your narrowband images tothe next level. He will demonstrate how to combine narrowband datawith RGB data for more dynamic range and colorful stars. In a step bystep fashion he will also show how to combine the best of all the masterframes into a synthetic luminance and use is to bring out depthand vibrant colors. Ken loves his details and will demonstrate the multistrength deconvolution layer blend sharpening system. This methodcombines the sharpest details with smooth backgrounds so you canKen Crawford started imaging in 2001 and currently takes data from his backyard observatory and from a remotelycontrolled observatory in South Australia. He enjoys the technical art aspect of the hobby and loves to share hispassion for the hobby bygiving presentations allover the US and is thecurrent President of theAdvanced Imaging Conference.NGC 2736The Pencil NebulaAPOD January 8, 2009RCOS 14.5" Truss - ClassicalCass - F8Apogee Alta U16mParamount MEAstrodon 2nd Generation50mm Square FiltersRed = 60 minutesBlue = 60 minutesGreen = 60 minutesHa = 120 minutesOIII = 120 minutesAdvanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 11

Tom DavisAstrophotographertvdavisastropics.comWide Field AstrophotographyTom Davis will share his approach to imaging dusty nebulae, from howto find and image the dusty regions of the night sky, to demonstratingthe use of software and commonly used plugins, while keeping the processingas simple as possible. He will also discuss the benefits of usingshort focal length instruments.It was his family's tradition to gift sons with a shotgun around theirtwelfth birthday. Fortunately, Tom received his first telescope, instead- a60mm Sears refractor. Even though he could not easily observe manynebulae or galaxies (faint or otherwise) through it, the rings of Saturn were clearly visible and that got him hooked.It wasn't until many years later after he finished medical school, residency and fellowship that he had sufficient funds topurchase a 'real' telescope- a Celestron 8. His move to a region of the country with relatively darks skies, southeastIdaho, was a boon to his re-awakened enthusiasm for astronomy.In 2001, Tom began takingphotographs through his telescoperelying on filmemulsionto gather faint stellarsignals but, by the next year,SBIG's ST-237 CCD camerahelped him accomplish thesame task.Today, Tom pursues shortfocal length imaging with anemphasis on documentingchallenging dusty reflectionand dark nebulae that arerarely depicted by others. Hisboundless enthusiasm for thehobby is evidenced by his useof two imaging locations halfa world apart. From Idaho,Tom works with a 12" f/3.5corrected Newtonian astrographand a 5" f/5.2 apo refractor.From Australia, a 6"f/5.4 tele-compressorequipped apochromatic refractorserves as his lightgathering instrument.To help him cope with thefickle skies of eastern Idaho'sTeton region, Tom often gathersdata with two telescopessimultaneously- one capturesluminance information whilethe other records color. NGC 2170 - APOD January 14, 2009Astro-Physics 155EDF (155TCC) f/5.4 refractorFLI Proline KAF-16803; 12.6 hours; LHaRGB 260:300:100:100:100, unbinnedAdvanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 12

Dr. David Martinez-DelgadoAstrophysicist (Astrophysical Institute of the Canary Islands,Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics)Galactic Archaeology: searching for the fossils of galaxyformation with amateur telescopesAn international team of astronomers, led by Dr. David Martinez-Delgado, hasidentified enormous star streams on the periphery of nearby spiral galaxiesand, for the first time, obtained deep images of galactic cannibalism- a processalso believed to be occurring between the Milky Way and the Sagittarius dwarfgalaxy. The team was joined by amateur astrophotographers who were responsiblefor obtaining the images that detected the streams. This collaborationdemonstrates the potential for twenty-first century amateurs, armed withthe latest technology, to participate in competitive international scientific projects.Dr. David Martínez-Delgado (Cordoba, 1970) is the principal investigator of the Galactic Archaeology group at the Institutode Astrofisica de Canarias (Tenerife, Spain). In the last years he has actively worked in the study of the tidal destructionprocesses of dwarf galaxies in the Galactic halo.In particular, he has searched and characterized the Sagittarius tidal stream, and studied this satellite interaction withour Galaxy using theoretical simulations. Within his main findings we can cite the discovery of a tidal tail in the UrsaMinor satellite galaxy, the detection of the Sagittarius North stream, the association of the Palomar twelve globular clusterwith the Sagittarius stream, his study of the Monoceros tidal stream, the nature of Canis Major galaxy and his participationin the discovery of three new dwarf galaxies in the Local Group.Dr. Martínez-Delgado has published more than forty refereed journal papers in total for professional magazines in additionto several contributions at international conferences. He has also organized several international scientific meetingson the topic and the Canary Island Winter of Astrophysics in 2008.Nowadays, he is leading a project devoted to the searches for stellar fossils of dwarf galaxy accretion around nearbyspiral galaxies, in collaboration with a team of American astrophotographers. He also has a large number of internationalcollaborations with leading groups in this research area in Europe and USA.Moreover, he has a long experience in theproduction and interpretation of precisionphotometric data and the study of stellarpopulations in the Local Group of galaxiesusing synthetic color-magnitude diagrams(Martínez-Delgado, PhD thesis 1999,awarded with a recognition by the Universidadde La Laguna).Dr. Martínez-Delgado in an expert observerand has participated in several observationcampaigns at the Roque de los Muchachos(La Palma), Calar Alto (Spain), Las Campanas(Chile), La Silla (Chile), VLT (Chile)and Paranal (Chile) observatories and withthe Hubble Space Telescope.He was also support astronomer for twoyears at the Teide Observatory (Tenerife)and serves as the coordinator of Spanish Pro-Am Collaboration for the Spanish AstronomicalSociety since 2009.Sagittarius Dwarf Tidal Stream - APOD May 29, 2005Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 13

Alan EricksonSenior Computer ScientistAdobe SystemswithAravind KrishnaswamySenior Computer ScientistAdobe’s Advanced Technology LabsUnlocking the Power of PhotoshopPhotoshop is a key tool for astrophotography. AlanErickson and Aravind Krishnaswamy, Adobe Photoshopengineers, will share their tips and tricks onusing the tools in Photoshop for processing astroimages. They will focus on new tools available in CS3 and CS4, discuss HDR(including some theory behind HDR) and advanced selection.Alan Erickson is a Senior Computer Scientist at Adobe Systems. He joined Adobe in1996, working on Photoshop and related products. His feature work has includedvideo layers, animation, clone palette, and adjustments palette.Erickson moved with his family from Minneapolis to Denver in 1998. The warmer climateand clear skies kindled an interest in astronomy. Though not initially interestedin astrophotography, he started tinkering with it in 2004 when he got his first digitalSLR camera. With numerous equipment upgrades and many hours of effort, Alancontinues to develop proficiency and understanding of imaging the night sky.Erickson strives to bring awareness of the astro imaging discipline to other membersof the Photoshop team. That awareness paid off in 2008 when Adobe helped sponsorthe Midwest Astro Imaging Conference, and sent him to represent Adobe. Ericksoncontributed an article to the January 2009 issue of AstroPhoto Insight, covering thenew features in Photoshop CS4.Aravind Krishnaswamy is a Senior Computer Scientist inAdobes Advanced Technology Labs working on graphicsrelated topics. He joined Adobe in 2005 where he worked onPhotoshop CS3. In 2007, he joined the Advanced TechnologyLabs and helped develop interactive ray tracing technologywhich was incorporated into Photoshop CS4. Some of his currentresearch interests include: simulation of natural phenomena,biophysically-based rendering of organic materials, practicalglobal illumination, and parallel computing. Prior to joiningAdobe, he spent 6 years at Inscriber (now Harris BroadcastSystems) developing animation and broadcast television software.Krishnaswamy received his BMath and MMath in ComputerScience from the University of Waterloo.In his free time Krishnaswamy can be found behind the viewfinderof a camera as an avid bird and wildlife photographer.He can also be found with his telescope and camera in hisbackyard trying to take images of the heavens.Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 14

R. Jay GaBanyAstrophotographerBlackbird Observatorywww.cosmotography.comMaking Eye CandyThe only thing better than creating an interesting image is to produce apicture that viewers consider memorable. This requires the use of a fewcommon ingredients that should be included in any astro-photographer'simaging pantry- clarity, composition and saturation. This presentation willdiscuss simple techniques that leverage each aspect individually (and incombination) to turn a less than satisfying data set into something deliciousfor even the most discriminating eye tooth!Jay's interest in astronomy was lit by the space race of the sixties. Forexample, while live televised images of Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin'shistoric lunar walk were flickering on our family television, I recall rushing into the backyard with my 2.5 inch refractor inhopes of glimpsing their landing site on the moon. COSMOS, Carl Sagan's epic thirteen part PBS series further fannedthe flames of my enthusiasm and ultimately led to the purchase of Meade's original SCT shortly thereafter. Many othertelescopes followed and by the time of Halley's Comet's most recent passing, I had learned to take manually guided photographsthrough a telescope with a 35mm film SLR camera. Unfortunately, family, kids, career and expenses turned meinto a spectator as amateur astronomy converted from film to CCD during the 1990's.However, his fascination with imaging was rekindled during an un-planned visit to personal websites filled with fantasticCCD pictures by many highly regarded imagers like Russell Croman and Adam Block- but it was the striking pictures ofRobert Gendler that ultimately inspired him to re-engage with this aspect of the hobby. So, after many months of contendingwith serious light pollution from his San Jose, California backyard, Jay began exposing pictures with remotely controlledinstrumentslocatedunder verydark skies inNew Mexicoand near Melbourne,Australia.The Perseus Galaxy Cluster (Abell 426) - APOD May 8, 2009RCOS 20 inch, SBIG STL-11000; L=945 min R=180 min G=108 min B=216 min, Ha = 435 minFor the pastfour years,Jay has alsoparticipatedwith an internationalteamof astrophysicts,leadby Dr. DavidMartinez-Delgado, insearch of galactictidalstreams- thefaint remiansof long-agovanished satellitegalaxiessurroundingnearby starsystems.Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 15

Tony Hallas2009 AIC Hubble Award Recipientwww.astrophoto.comTony's astrophotographic career can be summarized as a series offirsts. For example, starting out over 25 years ago, he was one of thefirst to produce film-emulsion images using an autoguider. Tony wasalso one of the first to champion the use of stacked astronomical imagesas a method that improved the final picture's signal to noise.Particularly during the early years of digital astrophotography, Tony'spictures were the reference to which digital imagers compared their images.Finally, to many in the community, Tony's images remain the firstamong equals in their aesthetic quality, composition and color! Tony'spictures have been published in countless magazines, television productionsand books. He is a highly regarded speaker and the recipient of numerous, prestigious awards.Tony's Friday workshop will focus on the following topics:- The advantage of incremental stretching- The power of layers- H-a combine methodsNGC 6888APOD August 13, 200914.5 " f/8 RCOSCCCamera : Apogee 16803Filters : Astrodon Series IIA/P 1200 GTO mountTaken July 2008Foresthill, CALRGB H-a & OIIIL 9 x 360 1 x 1R 9 x 360 2 x 2G 9 x 360 2 x 2B 9 x 360 2 x 2H-a 9 x 1800 2 x 2OIII 9 x 1800 2 x 2Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 16

Warren KellerLecturer, Author, Image Processing Instructor,Astrophotographerwww.billionsandbillions.comThe Five S's of Astrophotographic Post-ProcessingThere are many aspects to post-processing your images. Warren Keller willprovide an overview of five critical steps, primarily with Photoshop, that hecalls 'The Five Ss' TM of Astrophotographic Post-Processing: 1) Stretching,2) Sharpening, 3) Saturating, 4) Smoothing, and 5) Selecting.At 15-years old, Warren began exploring the night sky with an 8" Newtonian,but by college; the sky was forgotten for a career in music, playingbright-city venues far from the dark skies of his youth. Receiving gifts of astar chart and modest achromat, Christmas of 1997 re-ignited the passion.He says 'When I was a child, I was given Fred Hoyle's 'Astronomy'. Thecover had the glossiest, full-color photo of the Ring Nebula in the blackest, velvet sky. I knew from that moment I mustsomeday photograph the heavens' wonders.' Warren's artful photos are displayed at with film in 1998, Warren switched to CCD in 2003. Artistic by nature, it is less about Cosmology and ChargeCoupled Devices, and more about the thrill of the hunt for the myriad of beautiful shapes and colors throughout the universe.Warren has the ability to reduce difficult concepts of Astro-Imaging to the essentials and effectively teach it toothers. His tutorial business has given clients the world over, a 'quick start' to taking their own great photos,and was named a Sky & Telescope Magazine 'Hot Product' in 2007.Warren uses his background in communications and art history from the American University, Washington, DC to emphasizethe importance of artfulness in a largely left-brained hobby. Warren is proud to have been published in Sky &Telescope, Astronomy, Amateur Astronomy, and many places on the World Wide Web, most prestigiously- NASA'sAPOD. Warrenwrites extensivelyfor Astro-Photo Insight,and is listowner/moderator ofSXV-OSC, auser group forOne-Shot-Color CCD atYahoo!Groups.Warren lecturesand leadsimaging workshopsthroughoutthe country,and has presentedto starparties andgroups as variedas Boy/GirlScouts, Chambersof Commerceandcamera clubs.NGC 2903 in LeoRCOS 14.5", STL-11000M, Paramount ME, Astrodon C/R-G-B filtersAdvanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 17

Paul MortfieldAstrophotographerwww.backyardastronomer.comData Mining Part 2Ever looked at your astrophotos and think you've found somethingnew? There might be a new asteroid, a comet or supernova hiding inyour images. As a followup to the 2008 Sky & Telescope article, Paulpresent the hands-on steps of using the various tools for analyzing images,checking finds and pulling out the appropriate data for submission.We'll walk through the requirements of obtaining your own MinorPlanet Center observatory code needed to properly submit your discoveries.After this talk, we're sure you'll all be looking back throughyour image datalooking for surprises.Paul Mortfieldchairs the operationof the DavidDunlap Observatory,Canada'slargest optical telescopenear Toronto.He hasworked withNASA's SOHOsolar spacecraft,hosted many educationalbroadcastson NASA-TVand is currentlypart of the education/outreachteamof NASA'sLCROSS missionto the moon. He isa member scientistof NASA's EducationProducts Reviewteam and hasbeen the chair ofthe AAVSO SolarProgram since2006. Paul's remotetelescope atSRO in Californiais used to captureastrophotos, somescience, and todate has discovered3 asteroids.Veil Nebula (eastern section) - APOD November 1, 2008Paul Mortfield & Stefano CancelliRCOS 16" f/8.9, Apogee U16M with AstroDon Gen2 Filters, Hydrogen-Alpha (3nm),Oxygen-III (3nm), 8 hour exposureAdvanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 18

Michael SherickAstrophotographerwww.imagingtheheavens.comUsing CCDCommander- a personal perspectiveIn his presentation Mike will explain what CCD Commander is andprovide an general overview of its features, screen displays and actionlists, dithering function, telescope control, various actions includingplate solve, focusing, and time actions, camera and dome controland more.Mike Sherick is retired from over 30 years in the computer industryhaving been active in startup companies, designing and developingprinting/plotting devices for the engineering marketplace. Mike'snatural love for electro-mechanical design also included a personal interest in building experimental aircraft, telescopesand observatory systems. Over the last six years, Mike has built three private robotic observatories.Currently, Mike owns/operates both the Sagrada Observatory at his home in Las Cruces, NM, and the JMSMObservatory near Mayhill, NM. These remote, robotic observatories were designed specifically for CCD Imagingof popular deep sky objects. Mike's most recent engineering challenge is a fork-mounted 24" RC telescope, currentlyunder construction, that will be used for CCD Imaging at his JMSM Observatory sometime in 2010.Busy Center of the Lagoon Nebula - APOD August 3, 2005Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 19

George SjobergAstrophotographerUsing ACP- a personal perspectiveGeorge is a retired softwareand network designengineer living inthe Boston Massachusetts area. Acquiring his telescope in 1984, hecurrently works with a Celestron 14 situated in Mayhill, New Mexicoat New Mexico Skies which he has been operating remotely for twoyears. George interests include both astro-imaging and variable starobservations. In addition to the C14 he has a C8 which he uses inconjunction with his local school systems to enrich science curriculathrough classroom demonstrations and school star parties.Using ACP and ACP Scheduler for remote image acquisition with amodest telescope. How to plan and schedule the imaging to makethe best of the telescope and conditions. Workshop will demonstratecreation of plans that combine astro-imaging, variable star data collection,and automated support for the VOEvents (observation ofGamma Ray Bursts, supernovae, CV outbursts,etc).Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 20

Craig StarkAstrophotographerwww.stark-labs.comFriday Workshop: Improved AutoguidingGeneral Weekend Session Presentation: Astrophotographyon a BudgetIn his general session presentation, Craig will answer the questions:In his Friday workshop, will will explain how does autoguidingworks, what is needed to get started with guiding, how to improveguiding bette and answer attendees questions based on your guidingexperiences, concerns, and problems with guiding.Can you do high-quality astrophotography without breaking the bank?How should I allocate my budget?Can moderate mounts really be used or do I need a high-end mount?What's the difference between cameras anyway?How well do DSLRs stack up against dedicated astro CCDs?By day, Craig Stark, Ph.D., is a professor of neuroscience who studies memory by trying to pull faint signalsout of noisy images of brain scans. By night, Craig is an amateur astrophotographer who tries to pullfaint signals out of noisy images of deep sky objects.Craig is perhaps best known for the software he writes for Stark Labs. He's the author of numerous freeor affordable pieces of astrophotography software for the Mac and PC including PHD Guiding, Nebulosity,and DSLR Shutter. He's a frequent contributor to Astrophotography Insight, Astronomy TechnologyToday, and has a new regular column on Cloudy Nights. He's also given talks at the MWAIC, NEAIC,Nightfall, and the Julian Starfest.Pelican through North American Nebula (two panel shot)QSI 540, Custom Sci 3 nm Ha, Borg 101 ED f/4 on Tak EM-10 guided in PHD via Borg guidescope + LodestarAdvanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 21

Volker WendelAstrophotographerwww.spiegelteam.deHigh Resolution ImagingLong focal length photography can be a real adventure since there aremillions of small objects that can be imaged. Volker Wendel will sharesome of his remarkable images and explain what is necessary toachieve high-resolution results.Volker’s interest in astronomy was nurtured at the age of four, when hisgrandmother introduced the him to the moon through an open windowusing a hand held telescope. Years later, a small camera rigged to amodest Newtonian telescope helped him produce his first astronomicalexposures. Significantly, while working on the initial film roll, serendipitythrew a bright meteor across the sky where his instrument was pointed at the instant the shutter opened. This resulted ina spectacular image that was subsequently published in a book about astrophotography and for Volker, there was noturning back!In the years that followed, the Newtonian was superceded by a Celestron 8, then a Celestron 11 and finally by both a 15-inch Phillipp Keller astrograph and a fast 12-inch Deltagraph. Eleven years ago, Wendel and two friends began producingboth gray-scale and full color images using medium format and Technical Pan 6415 emulsion based film. They calledthemselves the Spiegelteam and the name has stuck. It was also during this period that his mentor, Dr. Ernst Brodkorb,introduced Volker to digital image processing.After seeing the published results of early CCD imaging pioneers, Volker moved from traditional film to all-digital datacollection based on his recognition that astrophotography was fundamentally changing.German weather leavesmuch to be desired andclear nights, when theyhappen, are typicallyawash with light pollution.So, if better skies won'tcome to the imager, thenthe imager must travel tobetter skies. Thus, Volkertook his setup on the roadto places such as "PfälzerWald", Germany's largestforest under dark clearskies; Gornergrat, a stupendouslocation in theshadow of the Matterhornover 3,000 meters high inthe Swiss Alps and Namibia,on three separateoccasions with his closefriend Bernd Flach-Wilken.Today, Volker relies on af/4,6 15-inch Newtonianand a SBIG ST10XMEcamera riding on a ninetykilogram German equatorialAlt-AD7 mount. NGC 6946 - APOD August 15, 200815" f/8 Newtonian, SBIG ST10XME, CFW8 and AO7LRGB (L=17x600s; R=4x600s; G=4x600s; B=4x600s; all unbinned)Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 22

AIC Founding SponsorsAIC Founder HonoredBy resolution of the AIC Board of Directors, Steve Mandel, AIC Founder and former conferenceChairman, will be honored in a special presentation at the opening of the meeting'sgeneral session on Saturday, October 31.Six years ago, Steve nurtured the germ of idea to bring fellow astrophotoghers together forthe purpose of sharing processing techniques and personal image acquisition experiences.This was envisioned to be a small weekend gathering of friends who shared a common fervor for our hobby. About seventyfive people attended that first meeting in 2004 and each year the number of attendees enlarged- this fall, we areexpecting almost three hundred participants.Last year, as Steve handed over the conference leadership baton to the current AIC President, Ken Crawford, he alsogarnered two prestigious awards for his many other contributions to science and the astronomical community.First, the American Astronomical Society, the leading organization of professional astronomers in the United States,presented Steve with their 2008 Chambliss Amateur Achievement Medal for his many contributions to wide field imagingas evidenced by his work on the Mandel-Wilson Unexplored Nebula project that identified extended far-red emissionsfrom extremely low surface brightness interstellar clouds in the Milky Way.Next, the Astronomical Society of the Pacific selected Steve as their 2008 Amateur Achievement Award recipient.As is too often the case with enthusiasts, life's responsibilities sometimes have a way of taking precedence over astronomicalactivities and Steve discovered that he was no exception- his professional duties have required all his attentionduring the recent past. So, rather than allowing Steve to quietly slip into the night, the 2009 Advanced Imaging Conferencewill recognize Steve's years of self-less dedication and his vision for organizing what has become the world's greatestgathering of astrophotographers under one roof.2010 Advanced Imaging ConferenceOctober 22-24, 2010Advanced Imaging Conference October 30 - November 1, 2009 San Jose, California Page 23

More magazines by this user
Similar magazines