This image of Mars was composed from a 4.8 minute video exposure, using the digital crop feature of my DSLR camera and a 2X barlow lens. It was taken around six weeks after opposition (which was on 27th July 2018) and so the Martian disc was no longer ‘full’.

The global dust storm which enveloped the entire planet a couple of months ago seems to have largely dissipated and some dark surface features and the lighter South Polar Cap are visible.


Visual magnitude: -1.8
Illumination 91.8%
Apparent diameter: 19.0 arc-sec.
Actual diameter: 6792 km.
Distance: 0.4926 AU.
Altitude: 61°.


Exposure: 14,522 frames @ 448×448 @ 50fps.
Date: 2018-09-11.
Location: Leumeah, NSW.
Sky: suburban, clear but some bushfire smoke and high haze. (I had difficulties picking out 1st magnitude Altair during the alignment procedure).
Processing: Pipp, VirtualDub, Registax5, GIMP.
Cropping: digital crop.

Telescope: Meade LX-90, 2000 mm focal length, f/10 focal ratio.
Mount: Alt-Az.
Camera: Canon EOS 60D.
2X barlow lens.
No filter, no flattener.

Image © R.Powell


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