Moon occulting Aldebaran – December 23, 2015

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A new occultation of Aldebaran (Alpha Tauri) by our Moon took place on the night of December 23. The previous such event took place on October 29.

For this event I’ve used the data posted by Adrian Sonka on his page. Thanks for that Adi!

This time, my observing equipment was a small SkyWatcher 127mm F/12 Maksutov telescope coupled with the Canon 550D, and the ASI120MM-S camera with a Red filter.

First shot of the event, acquired 12 minutes before the ingress of the star, using the Canon and three frames with different exposure times (1/2s, 1/60s and 1/125s) in order to create a High Dynamic Range image. The colors were saturated a bit, and they show both the reddish color of Aldebaran and the colors of minerals on the surface of the Moon:

AldebaranMoonDec23, 2015.jpg

The second two shots present the ingress and egress of Aldebaran, both being acquired using the ASI camera working at 70 and 60 fps respectively. Both images are stacks of 100 frames.





And a “warp” star effect, showing the angle of “attach” of the star. This is a 9000 frames stack:


Now, two animations at 10 fps showing the two contact moments.


anim ingress 10fps.gif


anim egress.gif

I’ve also posted a short film of the event on YouTube here:


Now the processing of the shots in order to estimate the true size of Aldebaran will have to be performed…But not just yet: tomorrow Santa will come, so I have to prepare for him 🙂

Maybe he’ll bring me another ASI camera, maybe…the ASI174MM model 😉


Marry Christmas!

2 Replies to “Moon occulting Aldebaran – December 23, 2015”

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