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strongmanmike2002 | all galleries >> Awards, discoveries and publications >> Awards >> South Pacific Star Party "Astros" >> SPSP "Astro Awards" 2009 > Centaurus A Ultra Deep Field - Multi Award Winner
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Centaurus A Ultra Deep Field - Multi Award Winner

** Finalist and recipient of a Highly Commended award in Astronomy Photographer of the Year awards
2009 hosted by The Royal Observatory Greenwich, Sky at Night magazine and Flickr photo sharing web
site **

** Published in Nov 2009 issue of Astronomy Magazine (US)

** Astronomy 2010 - guide to the night sky

** Front cover of Sky at Night Calender 2010

** Featured wall poster at the International Conference on Centaurus A June 2009 Sydney **

** 2nd place SPSP 2009 Astro Awards

** 2008 David Malin Awards - Honorable Mention (Amateur Deep Sky)

** Astronomy Magazine Picture of the Day 23 Oct 2008 **

** Feature article "Spotlight On" in Australian Sky & Telescope, October 2008 **

** Two excellent articles at "Universe Today" inspired by this image **


This unique and extremely deep colour image, compiled from nearly 20hrs of exposure with just a 6"
telescope, was taken from a very dark sky in remote Australia. The image reveals the full outer
halo of the perculiar radio galaxy Centaurus A (NGC 5128) in Centaurus including faint polar
extensions extending from the top and bottom of the galaxy running diagonally. Also evident in this
image is the extensive but extremely faint Milky Way nebulosity and dust known as "Galactic Cirrus"
or "Integrated Flux" that permeates this entire region. Galactic Cirrus material lies just above
the plane of our galaxy and is lit by the light of The Milky Way as a whole but due to its extreme
faintness at 27mag/sq arc sec, is seldom seen in images, it is visible as faint patches
of dusty looking nebulosity all over the image. The Cirrus nebulosity around Centaurus A is some of
the faintest in the sky and is well below the natural sky brightness. Countless distant background
galaxies of all shapes and sizes can be found scattered all over the field of view as well.

Here are other image views that showcase various aspects of this amazing southern galaxy!

AP152 F7.5 Starfire APO refractor with 4" field flattener
FLI ProLine11002 CCD & CFW-2-7
LRGB = 15hrs 1.5hr 1.5hr 1.5hr = 19.5hrs total exposure (all bin 1X1) Astronomik filters
-35C chip temp, darks and flats (AstroHandy LightRing used for flats)
12MPPS download speed = 1.5sec/full frame download at bin 1X1.
FOV = 1.6deg X 1.2deg at 1.4"/pix
Guide Camera: Starlightxpress SXVH9

Taken over 3 nights from very dark skies at "Wiruna" - the remote dark sky site of the
Astronomical Society of New South Wales, Australia:

Some links to equipment used to take this image:

Finger Lakes Instrumentation (FLI) CCD cameras and equipment:

StarlightXpress CCD cameras and equipment

Astro-Elecronic FS2 scope GOTO controller:

Gerd Neumann/Astronomik filters:

MSB Software & Astroart 4

STAR Atlas:PRO planetarium software

AstroHandy Accessories

other sizes: small medium large original auto
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Guest 01-May-2015 06:19
Holy friggin molly
Guest 15-Sep-2010 02:28
Friggin amazing image
Charles Lasnier25-Apr-2010 08:26
Fantastic resolution of the dust lane, great detail.
Dave Brookes 13-Apr-2010 04:02
The most impressive image of Centaurus A on the web
Andre Fontaine17-Jan-2009 23:44
fantastic pose ! v
Jonathan Lowe 31-Oct-2008 01:33
Amazing galaxy in so many ways. --Jonathan Lowe,