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Perseid in the Southern MilkyWay

This image was taken on the on the night of the 10th/11th of August 2012, the night before the peak of the Perseid Meteor shower. The plan was to take a long exposure to bring out the detail in the Milky Way and then continue to take shorter exposure to capture any Perseids that lit up that area of the sky. This was just a test run for the peak on the following night. However, there was 100% cloud cover during the peak of this year’s shower so this is the only meteor I captured. Having said that this was the brightest Perseid I seen this year and I couldn’t believe my luck when I reviewed the image and realised I had caught it in just in the corner of the frame.


Image Details:


Location: Killygordon, Co. Donegal, Ireland.

Date: 10/11 August 2012

Equipment: Canon 1000D and Sigma 20mm F1.8 lens with LP filter, Celestron CG5 Mount.

Exposure: Milky Way 300sec, ISO 800, F2.5, Meteor 30 ISO 1600 F1.8


About Perseid Meteor Shower:


Meteor showers derive their names from the position of their radiant in the sky. Radiant is the term used to describe the point in the sky from which the meteors appear to originate from. Tracing the path of the meteors backwards will lead you to this point. Hence, the Perseid meteor shower’s radiant is in the constellation of Persius, the hero from Greek mythology who famously killed the serpent-haired Medusa. As comets travel through space, they leave a trail of ionised gas and dust behind them. Meteor showers occur when the earth passes through this trail of dust, resulting in the particles being incinerated high up in the earth’s atmosphere, producing spectacular shooting stars.


What else is in the Image:


The bright star fields of the Summer Milky Way in the constellation of Sagittarius glowing right down to the horizon. There are also a number of bright emission nebulae in the image. The Lagoon, Trifid, Eagle and Swan Nebulae to name but a few. To the upper left of the image is the bright star Altair which makes up one point in the summer triangle. The dark dust lanes of the Milky Way can also be seen running through our home Galaxy.


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Taken on August 10, 2012