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Improving seeing with Lucky Imaging

Submitter: Rik ter Horst
Description: This image of Clavius and Moretus was taken on the 24th of July with a 200 mm Schmidt-Cassegrain from a little village in the north of Groningen by Rik ter Horst. Despite the rather mediocre seeing conditions the image shows details around the theoretical resolution of the telescope, being 0.6 arc seconds. The used technique is called "Lucky Imaging" and makes use of a low noise video camera (a DMK 31 B@W camera) and software to stack individual frames from a AVI-movie; During the recording of this AVI-movie, frames with better seeing will generate a higher contrast and Registax software is capable of measuring the quality of each individual frame. For this image a selection of 500 frames out of 1000 frames were used to be finally stacked. The worst seeing moments are discarded. By applying wavelet filters and Unsharp Masking techniques with Photoshop the final image had been processed in order to make the smallest details visible. Lucky Imaging is a very powerful and cheap technique and is currently more and more used by astronomical observatories around the world. See also the lucky imaging web page: http://www.ast.cam.ac.uk/~optics/Lucky_Web_Site/
Copyright: Rik ter Horst
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