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Comet NEOWISE at Saskatchewan River Crosssing (July 26, 2020) | by Amazing Sky Photography
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Comet NEOWISE at Saskatchewan River Crosssing (July 26, 2020)

Comet NEOWISE (C/2020 F3) on July 26, 2020 from the area of Saskatchewan River Crossing in Banff National Park, Alberta. It was from near here that scientist and explorer James Hector, member of the 1858-59 Palliser Expediton, observed Comet Donati on September 10, 1858 as they made their way up the valleys of the Bow, Mistaya, Howse and Saskatchewan Rivers, as part of a British scientific expedition to map the area and much of southern Alberta.

 

Mount Wilson at right is lit in part by the setting Moon out of sight behind the foreground hill and by lingering summer twilight lighting the horizon over the Saskatchewan River valley at centre.

 

This is an exposure blend of a stack of 4 x 2-minute untracked exposures for the ground at ISO 200, with 3 x 1-minute tracked and stacked exposures at ISO 400 for the sky. Stacking the images smooths noise. Tracking the sky prevents star trailing in the long exposures needed to reveal lots of stars and the fading comet well.

 

The camera was on the iOptron SkyGuider Pro tracker. For the ground shots I simply turned the tracker motor off. All with the 35mm Canon Art lens at f/2.8 and Canon EOS Ra.

 

Topaz Sharpen AI applied to the ground. In camera LENR employed on all shots on this warm night.

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Taken on July 27, 2020