Photo credit: Matt Harbison via PetaPixel
Astrophotographer Matt Harbison spent 5-years capturing an amazing 2.5 gigapixel image of the Orion Constellation, which required shooting thousands of individual photos. One piece of specialized equipment that made his dream a reality is the $4,800 QHY 16200 CCD APS-H camera with an integrated 7-position filter wheel capable of capturing a 1.6-pixel scale of the constellation Orion. After all of the photos were captured, it still required over 500-hours of integration.
The integration started in 2015 with a Dual Xeon-equipped Mac Pro with 64GB of RAM, but even then, it only got him to panel 47 out of 200 before hitting a bottleneck. Fast forward to August 2020, he finished the project with an AMD Threadripper packing 24-Cores and 256GB of RAM. Software used include Sequence Generator Pro, PHD2 Guiding, Pixinsight, Astro Pixel Processor, and Adobe Photoshop.
- Proven NexStar computer control technology
- High quality 127mm Maksutov-Cassegrain
- Database allows telescope to locate over 4,000 celestial objects
The image posed many problems from the start- balancing differing sky conditions per night, aligning to the same star position each and every night, and meticulously returning to a position just a few thousand pixels North, South, East, or West. Aside from the challenge of software, there were also the continual hardware problems and challenging weather conditions in East Tennessee. Sure, there are some good nights, but there are some not so good nights as well,” said Harbison.
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Project Orion -My 2.5 gigapixel mosaic spanning 5 years, 267 panels, 12,816 photos, 640.8 imaging hours, and over 500 editing hours is complete. Please take some time to look at the full resolution and details at the link! LINK IN BIO! https://space4everybody.com/home/project-orion/ #astrophotography #space #astro #nasa #apodos