Friday, January 30, 2015

Asteroid 2004 BL86

I was sick, but I couldn't resist the temptation to image part of the flyby of asteroid 2004 BL86 the other night. Below is a time-lapse video taken of the event as the asteroid moved across Messier 44, the Beehive Cluster. Of course, both objects are VERY far apart. The asteroid was about 4 light seconds away (approximately 3.1 times the distance between Earth and the Moon), while M44 is around 577 light years away.

The video compresses about 27 minutes down to 6 seconds.

Each frame is a 20-second exposure taken at ISO-3200 with a Canon EOS Rebel T3. I did not use autoguiding, so there is some visible periodic error. Passing clouds cause the brightening and dimming of the background.

This is the first set of images taken with the Takahashi Epsilon 200 since I cleaned the mirror. The collimation is still a little off, but I didn't have time and energy that night to fine tune it. I'm looking forward to getting the scope back into full service soon!

1 comment:

  1. Awesome! You did it! What a cool video and excellent observation. Val