Moon Terminator
On May, 4th, 2006

Some of you who were watching my previous galleries might wonder why there are no pictures from one of the most prominent celestial bodies, the moon. The answer is similar as the circumstances about planetary photography explained in the planets gallery. It is the turbulences in the atmosphere which reduce the yield of classical lunar photography attempts to an unsatisfying percentage.

Again, video and webcam technology made for a revolution in lunar imaging. Picking the sharpest images from video sequences will overcome the distortion by the earth's atmosphere. The limited format of webcam chips can be overcome by assembling several pictures to mosaics. The picure above reveals the technique through the grey blanks to the lower right. It was taken with my new Sky Watcher 80/600mm, equiped with a 2x Meade Barlow lens.

In this frame I focused on the border between lunar day and night, the so-called terminator, where sunlight falls at the mountains and craters in a very shallow angle. Therefore the contrast of landscape features is encanced and minute details, like ghost craters and central mountains, can be captured. If you'd like to see the close-up, download the full-scale image below and and zoom in at the details with the picture viewer at your local machine.

Full-scale image 645 x 2340 pixels

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