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Astrophoto of M31, the Andromeda Galaxy, taken with an 85mm (3.35 in) diameter Takahashi a...

While nearly everyone enjoys a good astrophoto, the precision with which the astrograph (the telescope taking the photograph) must follow the stars is not widely appreciated. To take a good astrophoto of any but the brightest objects requires following their motion through the sky accurately. There are a number of approaches toward addressing this problem in the digital era. Perhaps the best option has now been enabled by Innovations Foresight's new ON-Axis Guider (ONAG).  Read More

Technicians working on the 'billion-pixel array,' which will be used aboard the Gaia space...

At approximately one billion pixels, it’s the largest digital camera ever built for a space mission. Over a five-year period, the “billion-pixel array” will be used aboard the European Space Agency’s Gaia spacecraft, to map upwards of a billion stars. While it will be focusing mainly on our own Milky Way galaxy, Gaia will also be mapping other celestial bodies, including galaxies and quasars near the edge of the observable universe.  Read More

The sequence shows the difference between the original image (obtained with a wrong key) a...

In the crowded digital camera market, camera makers are continually pushing pixel counts higher and higher to attract consumers who have been led to believe that, the more pixels, the better the image. Proving that this is not necessarily the case, a team of researchers from Spain’s UJI (Universitat Jaume I) Optics Research Group (GROC) has developed a sensor of just one pixel with the ability to record high quality images.  Read More

Hasselblad's new 40 megapixel medium format digital SLR

Following last September's announcement of new 50 megapixel and 60 megapixel H4D medium format cameras, Hasselblad has now announced the immediate availability of the H4D-40 DSLR camera system. The 40 of course signifies the number of megapixels, but the camera also benefits from up to four minute exposure times, faster capture rates and higher ISO ratings as well as an improved auto focus mechanism.  Read More

Pacman Nebula taken with an SBIG ST-8300M (photo: David Morrow/SBIG)

The Santa Barbara Instrument Group (SBIG) is adding two new models to its line of specialized, high-resolution CCD cameras for astrophotography and spectography. The ST-8300M and ST-8300C both feature an 8.3 megapixel CCD, thermoelectric cooling, and a USB 2.0 interface. The camera bodies accept both standard c-mount and Nikon lenses making them suitable for a variety of applications. SBIG claims the cameras’ antiblooming and microlens technology improves their sensitivity. Both cameras can also be used as autoguiders to control motorized telescope mounts.  Read More

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