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May 4, 2006
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Antares in Scorpius - Mk II by octane2 Antares in Scorpius - Mk II by octane2
*** Wow! I am sitting here trembling after having found out that this piece of work, was considered and deemed worthy enough to be featured as a Daily Deviation! I promise to reply to everyone who has sent me a note or left a message on this piece, or on the others in my gallery. Thank you so much. ***

Full view for maximum effect.

Antares in Scorpius - Mk II

Antares is a giant or supergiant star. Giant stars are large and bright and appear in the brighter portion of the Hertzsprung-Russell (H-R) diagram. Red giants, appearing on the lower-temperature side of the "giant" region of the H-R diagram are stars that no longer burn hydrogen in their core, but can burn hydrogen in an outer shell surrounding a now helium core. They are the next step in the life of a main sequence star like our sun. When a main sequence star has fused a certain portion of the hydrogen in its core, the star begins to swell, increasing in size by a factor of 100. As the star expands, it also cools, and becomes redder, hence the name "red giant". Most red giants will end their lives as white dwarfs after they shed their outer shell as a planetary nebula.

Antares is both a variable star and one member of a multiple star system. It is possible that this star is an "eclipsing variable". Eclipsing variables are members of a double star system which pass directly in front of their companion stars during their orbit. When this happens, light from the companion star is blocked, and the binary star appears fainter to observers on Earth.

To the left of Antares is the Cat's Eye (M4). M4 is a globular cluster, 10 billion years old. Only 7200 light years away, M4 may be the closest globular cluster to our solar system. Because Antares is a red supergiant, and only 1.5 degrees west of M4, it makes it tough to see M4 with the naked eye. Binoculars reveal M4 as a very bright and round globular. The cluster's core is loosely concentrated with a string of 10th magnitude and fainter stars running across the centre, partially obscured by clouds of interstellar matter. A remarkable object in a telescope.

This composite consists of one set of images; one set of 20 images taken at ISO-1600.
Each individual image was a 45 second exposure.
IRIS was used to calibrate each image (dark subtraction [median combined master dark] and flat field division [median combined master flat {lights, darks and offsets}]), to register, align, and finally stack.
Photoshop CS2 was used to adjust levels, curves, brightness and contrast, colour balance, frame and resize the final composite.

Target: Antares in Scorpius - Mk II
Date: Saturday, April 29th, 2006
Time: First image: 12:56:12 AM
Time: Last image: 1:14:21 AM
Location: Kulnura, NSW, Australia
Camera: Canon EOS-350D (unmodified)
Lens: Canon EF 50mm F/1.4 (stopped down to F/2.5)
Focal length: 50mm
Mount: Piggy-backed onto an 8" Meade LX90 LNT (F/10)
Alignment: Equatorial; via equatorial wedge
Exposure: 20 x 45 seconds @ ISO-1600 (RAW)
Software: IRIS: Calibration, registration, stacking; Adobe Photoshop CS2: post-processing and framing
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Daily Deviation

Given 2006-06-24
Antares in Scorpius - Mk II by *octane2is a beautiful and technical achievement. I've never seen anyone on dA capture the stars this beautifully. As far as I am concerned, the best of Astrophotography. ( Suggested by Beachrockz4eva and Featured by hesitation )

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StormChazzy Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Featured [link] :clap:
goldfischii Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2011
If I were a boy, my parents would've named me Antares :D
Cosmic-Cherry-Tree Featured By Owner Oct 4, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
Amazing and beautiful...featured here [link] :floating:
Yutima Featured By Owner Jul 12, 2010
Just WOW
octane2 Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2010  Professional Photographer

Glad you like it. :)

trollek Featured By Owner May 9, 2010
asolutely stunning.
tokk3 Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2010
House-of-Kadamon Featured By Owner May 20, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Do you know how much I love you for taking this picture!!?! I am absolutely obssessed with Astronomy! I'm dying to do astrophotography, but I'm clueless as to what equipment I need.
starofthedarks Featured By Owner Oct 16, 2008
heart of the scorpius..clap::)
Fauxfink Featured By Owner Oct 13, 2008
Anares is my favorite star and this just takes my breath away.
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