Viewing time period – 19:10 – 20:32
EXOPLANET – KELT-18b
As always on Christmas Day, or at least it seems so, the sky was clear for a period of time before the clouds rolled in. The day was dry and cold, sunny and bright, the first time in over a month of rain. Now was the time to take a look at a star and see if I could calibrate my setup for imaging an exoplanet transit.
I used the exoclock.space website to find objects for my location and then entered the RA and DEC into The Sky X (TSX) and slewed to it. The star and its associated planet tonight was KELT-18 and the planet KELT-18b. This was very low to the North when I slewed and I struggled doing a slew and sync with the scope in TSX due to not enough stars found.
So instead I placed the RA and DEC into SGPro and asked that to perform a slew and solve, which incidentally worked an absolute treat. The star was centred in the middle of the FoV and the star pattern matched that from the Exoclock website which they give you.
I then setup SGPro to take as many images as I could, each being 1min long as I could not find a guide star. At 1min I did not get any trailing and I should have said, all of this through the 12″. I set the cooler to -28℃ which consumed about 26% power so nicely cold. I choose the red filter as described to lower the amount of noise in the image and allow calibration with other astronomers images.
I had to change the user profile to the Comet profile as I did not wan the guider trying to settle, so restarted the run and was off. I managed to go for around an hour and thus grabbed 46 images. I am not sure if I can use the HOPS software from Exoclock to plot these but will try. I did not bother with calibration frames and if needed I can grab some later.
Either way, a good hours viewing in-between the outgoing festive cheer from one side of my family and the incoming festive cheer tomorrow from the other.
Merry Christmas and Clear Skies