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First try with the iOptron Skytracker Pro: Orion long exposure

January 26, 2018 @ 00:02 By: gordon Category: Astronomy

I bought an iOptron Skytracker Pro after Christmas from Ontario Telescope & Accessories, but since then the viewing conditions in Ottawa have sucked. This evening was one of a very small handful of nights this month where you could actually see the stars. I headed out into the cold and set up at the Deschênes Rapids Lookout along the Sir John A MacDonald Parkway. Not the ideal viewing location because of the light pollution, but good enough for what I wanted to do.

Setting up the Skytracker Pro was fairly straightforward, once Polaris came out from behind the receding clouds and I could polar align it. Then I aimed the camera south and pointed it at the constellation of Orion.

The whole point of having something like a Skytracker Pro is the ability to take long exposures (more than about 30 seconds) without having all the stars turn into curved lines. So, I set the ISO to 100 and the aperture on my Sigma 10-20mm (set to 20mm) to f/22 and took a 301 second exposure.

The result was a nice photo of Orion with no visible motion in the stars.

To say I’m happy with my Skytracker Pro is an understatement. I can’t wait for a slightly warmer, even less cloudy night for a longer session with it.

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