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Jupiter with the DFK 21AU04

Ed HahnenbergOn 12-14-12, I got a chance to take an image of Jupiter using both of my Imaging Source cameras … the DFK 21AU04.AS USB CCD color and the DMK 41AU02 monochrome. I had spent a couple of hours cleaning out my observatory of materials that had accumulated over the past few years. My concern was that I had made a mistake by investing in a JMI EV-3c Event Horizon SCT Focuser which attaches to the end of the C1400 scope. I had tried to achieve focus before, using the focusing knob that is native to the large scope to provide rough focus, and the EV-3c to fine-tune. However, after the observatory clean-up, I did some experimenting and found that I needed about three inches more of back-focus length. Where to find such a thing? Then I thought about my 2X Celestron Barlow. What if I took out the lens and just used the tube as the extension? Well, it worked.

So, back to the evening of imaging … It’s been frustrating to get a cloudless night this month because of all the fronts coming through … and the future weather forecasts indicate few cloudless winter nights. At 7:00 pm, Jupiter was beautiful in the east, but transparency was poor. That meant that, because of all the moisture in the air, I would be trying to image the planet “under water” so to speak.

Suffice to say, I was able to see Jupiter’s bands and its four moons, and the EV-3c worked very well. Attaching the DFK 21 camera produced this result after adjusting the exposure time and gain. It’s grainy and certainly not perfect, but a lot better than I had hoped.

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