Quantcast

 

OBSERVATORY COMMAND CENTER

HELP

Welcome to the Observatory Command Center! As a community member, you can command robotic telescopes at world class observing sites like the Canary Islands, off the west coast of Africa.

Make your own reservation now by clicking a GREEN Available Slot in the schedule. If all the slots are booked, move ahead a day in the schedule by clicking the red date flags.
Continue
Now select an object to be viewed using Quick Pick or Choose From List. These lists represent celestial objects that are in the night sky during your selected viewing time.

Members can also point the telescopes by entering a Catalog Number or Coordinates which will provide access to additional features such as processing recipes, auto-snap, and calibrated FITS images.

Once your slot is confirmed, the telescope will point to that object at the designated time. Both PNG and FITS image files are saved in My Pics for easy retrieval. Continue
Advanced users have access to additional features, including adjusting the processing recipes, auto-snap and calibrated FITS images. Click the Advanced button to review further.
Continue
It's that easy! Become a community member today to confirm your reservation.

Become a Member
Canary Islands Reservations
Image: Mercury from Orbit, NASA Goddard Spaceflight Center
Whats Up This Week

If you'd like to know some of the best objects to image this week, such as a supernova or new comet, check out the What's Up This Week page in the Clubhouse.

It also includes observatory opening times in worldwide time-zones.

[ close ]
Canary Islands Observatory
T2 Missions are online tonight; moonlight will affect image quality.T1 may autoclose due to high winds.
Chile Observatory
Missions are online; moonlight will affect some missions.
Auto-Snap

Auto-Snap will automatically save all of the images from this mission to your My Pics area. No need to snap, or even enter the Mission Interface. Just check the Auto-Snap box and then view your images after the mission is complete.

Color Mode
THIS FEATURE WILL BECOME AVAILABLE IN A FUTURE RELEASE

Normal color imaging is achieved by taking a long monochrome exposure through a luminance filter, which is essentially clear, but with UV and IR blocking. This is then colorized by adding shorter monochrome exposures taken through red, green, and blue filters. However, it is possible to obtain different results by following the same exposure and processing routines, just substituting a different filter for the Luminance exposure. This is often called a "filtered luminance" process, but that's a bit of a misnomer since a normal luminance exposure uses a filter as well.

RRGB

Using a red filter will intensify emission nebulae and help eliminate Moon glare, which is predominantly blue in color. It is also used frequently for planetary imaging where the planet can be too bright with a normal luminance filter. This mode does not work well with galaxies and reflection nebulae which have significant amounts of blue light.

HαRGB

Using a hydrogen-alpha narrowband filter for luminance further intensifies emission nebulae but results in a fainter overall image since the Hα admits so much less light. Again, does not work well with galaxies and reflection nebulae, although it does highlight the emission nebulae and star-forming regions in distant galaxies.

Monochrome Filter
THIS FEATURE WILL BECOME AVAILABLE IN A FUTURE RELEASE

Monochrome imaging takes just one long exposure (or a stack of several shorter ones) through just a single filter. The resulting image is monochrome (greyscale), even through is it taken through a color filter. Using this technique, images from several missions taken through different filters can be combined offline to achieve the equivalent of a much longer color exposure (up to 30 minutes or more). It is also possible to use narrowband or photometric filters on some scopes to create false color images.

Deliver Calibrated FITS Images

Images are normally delivered in a lossless PNG format, after various image processing recipes have been applied. FITS (Flexible Image Transport System) images on the other hand, are raw files representing the direct output of the CCD camera, with no image processing applied. These images have, however, been calibrated, meaning that dark, flat and bias frame processing has already been applied. Note that specialized astronomical image processing software is required to read FITS images.

If selected, the FITS images will be downloaded generally within 24 hours and will be available from a link next to the PNG image in your My Pics area. You will also be informed via email when the images are ready.

NOTE: Auto-Snap must be enabled to get FITS images.

Processing Recipes

All recipes use a long luminance exposure followed by shorter red, green, and blue exposures. The monochrome luminance is delivered first, followed by a merged LRGB. The exact exposure times and processing vary by system. For instance, on the Canary Islands dome 1 HM system, two luminance exposures, each similar in length to the single exposure on other systems, are taken and stacked for the final luminance image. On photographically slow systems (such as the f/11 Canary Islands dome 2 HM), the color images are taken at a higher binning and a gaussian blur is applied before the merge to reduce color noise.

Note that several bright objects, such as the Orion Nebula, the Andromeda Galaxy, and most planets use custom imaging and processing routines tailored specifically for each object. These targets should be imaged using the "Choose from List" option in order to employ the custom processing. None of the recipes available for catalog and coordinate missions will image these targets well.

The general differences between processing recipes are as follows:

Generic Recipe

A low contrast linear stretch is applied to both the delivered luminance image and the merged LRGB image.

Bright Star Recipe

A low contrast stretch with a high gamma is applied to darken the sky background. On some systems, the high-mag scope is disabled due to blooming issues.

Open Cluster Recipe

Similar to the Generic Recipe.

Globular Cluster Recipe

An FFT based DDP algorithm is applied to aid in resolving both the cluster center and edges. After DDP, a high gamma stretch is used with parameters similar to those used for the Moon.

Bright Galaxy or Comet Recipe

A kernel low-pass DDP helps to resolve the bright nucleus. A low-contrast stretch with a high gamma is applied to the delivered luminance image. The merged LRGB image receives a low-contrast stretch with a low gamma and localized contrast enhancement.

Faint Galaxy or Comet Recipe

A medium contrast stretch with a low gamma is applied to dig out faint details.

Large Bright Nebula Recipe

A low contrast, low gamma stretch is applied to the luminance images. After color merging, a high gamma stretch is used. This recipe assumes there is little to no dark background sky in the image.

Small Bright Nebula Recipe

A low gamma Moon stretch is applied to the luminance images. After color merging, a linear stretch is used. This recipe is designed mainly for planetary nebulae.

Faint Nebula Recipe

A medium contrast stretch with low gamma is applied.

on
Please complete your reservation within the next

Selected Target

Visible Targets:
Catalog:
format:
example:
Designation:

Processing:  
RA:    h    m    s   (J2000.0)
Dec:    °    '    "
RA:       Dec:  
Target Name:  (optional)

Processing:  
 Auto-Snap 
Color Mode 
LRGB
RRGB
HαRGB
Monochrome Filter 
Luminance
Red
Green
Blue

O-III
S-II
Photometric U
Photometric B
Photometric V
Photometric R
Photometric I
Deliver Calibrated FITS Images 
Page last refreshed ago.
No Pending Reservations for
Wednesday, January 28th
19:37 UTC
11:37am PST / 2:37pm EST
Waxing Gibbous Moon
Scheduled by SLOOH
19:42 UTC
11:42am PST / 2:42pm EST
2h 28m 14s +36° 06' 40"
Reserved by JonM
SLOOH member since February 16th, 2013
19:47 UTC
11:47am PST / 2:47pm EST
2h 28m 13s +36° 06' 53"
Reserved by JonM
SLOOH member since February 16th, 2013
19:52 UTC
11:52am PST / 2:52pm EST
2h 28m 12s +36° 07' 07"
Reserved by JonM
SLOOH member since February 16th, 2013
19:57 UTC
11:57am PST / 2:57pm EST
2h 28m 11s +36° 07' 20"
Reserved by JonM
SLOOH member since February 16th, 2013
20:02 UTC
12:02pm PST / 3:02pm EST
2h 28m 11s +36° 07' 33"
Reserved by JonM
SLOOH member since February 16th, 2013
20:07 UTC
12:07pm PST / 3:07pm EST
Horsehead Nebula (Barnard 33)
Scheduled by SLOOH
20:12 UTC
12:12pm PST / 3:12pm EST
Heart Nebula (IC 1805)
Reserved by JohanM
SLOOH member since December 26th, 2014
20:17 UTC
12:17pm PST / 3:17pm EST
23h 45m 42s +1° 03' 37"
Reserved by KarenM
SLOOH member since January 21st, 2013
20:22 UTC
12:22pm PST / 3:22pm EST
Uranus
Reserved by MaynardP
SLOOH member since May 7th, 2004
20:27 UTC
12:27pm PST / 3:27pm EST
23h 45m 42s +1° 03' 37"
Reserved by KarenM
SLOOH member since January 21st, 2013
20:32 UTC
12:32pm PST / 3:32pm EST
Uranus
Reserved by MaynardP
SLOOH member since May 7th, 2004
20:37 UTC
12:37pm PST / 3:37pm EST
Running Man Nebula (NGC 1977)
Scheduled by SLOOH
20:42 UTC
12:42pm PST / 3:42pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
20:47 UTC
12:47pm PST / 3:47pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
20:52 UTC
12:52pm PST / 3:52pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
20:57 UTC
12:57pm PST / 3:57pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
21:02 UTC
1:02pm PST / 4:02pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
21:07 UTC
1:07pm PST / 4:07pm EST
Waxing Gibbous Moon
Scheduled by SLOOH
21:12 UTC
1:12pm PST / 4:12pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
21:17 UTC
1:17pm PST / 4:17pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
21:22 UTC
1:22pm PST / 4:22pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
21:27 UTC
1:27pm PST / 4:27pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
21:32 UTC
1:32pm PST / 4:32pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
21:37 UTC
1:37pm PST / 4:37pm EST
Eskimo Nebula (NGC 2392)
Scheduled by SLOOH
21:42 UTC
1:42pm PST / 4:42pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
21:47 UTC
1:47pm PST / 4:47pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
21:52 UTC
1:52pm PST / 4:52pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
21:57 UTC
1:57pm PST / 4:57pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
22:02 UTC
2:02pm PST / 5:02pm EST
Jupiter
Reserved by SuzieH
SLOOH member since September 1st, 2007
22:07 UTC
2:07pm PST / 5:07pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
22:12 UTC
2:12pm PST / 5:12pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
22:17 UTC
2:17pm PST / 5:17pm EST
2h 29m 55s +36° 15' 49"
Reserved by SLOOH Tech
SLOOH member since September 16th, 2009
22:22 UTC
2:22pm PST / 5:22pm EST
2h 29m 55s +36° 15' 49"
Reserved by SLOOH Tech
SLOOH member since September 16th, 2009
22:27 UTC
2:27pm PST / 5:27pm EST
2h 29m 55s +36° 15' 49"
Reserved by SLOOH Tech
SLOOH member since September 16th, 2009
22:32 UTC
2:32pm PST / 5:32pm EST
2h 29m 55s +36° 15' 49"
Reserved by SLOOH Tech
SLOOH member since September 16th, 2009
22:37 UTC
2:37pm PST / 5:37pm EST
2h 29m 55s +36° 15' 49"
Reserved by SLOOH Tech
SLOOH member since September 16th, 2009
22:42 UTC
2:42pm PST / 5:42pm EST
2h 29m 55s +36° 15' 49"
Reserved by SLOOH Tech
SLOOH member since September 16th, 2009
22:47 UTC
2:47pm PST / 5:47pm EST
2h 29m 55s +36° 15' 49"
Reserved by SLOOH Tech
SLOOH member since September 16th, 2009
22:52 UTC
2:52pm PST / 5:52pm EST
2h 33m 22s +36° 16' 49"
Reserved by SLOOH Tech
SLOOH member since September 16th, 2009
22:57 UTC
2:57pm PST / 5:57pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
23:02 UTC
3:02pm PST / 6:02pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
23:07 UTC
3:07pm PST / 6:07pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
23:12 UTC
3:12pm PST / 6:12pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
23:17 UTC
3:17pm PST / 6:17pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
23:22 UTC
3:22pm PST / 6:22pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
23:27 UTC
3:27pm PST / 6:27pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
23:32 UTC
3:32pm PST / 6:32pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
23:37 UTC
3:37pm PST / 6:37pm EST
Waxing Gibbous Moon
Scheduled by SLOOH
23:42 UTC
3:42pm PST / 6:42pm EST
8h 42m 51s +67° 03' 20"
Reserved by DonC
SLOOH member since March 9th, 2013
23:47 UTC
3:47pm PST / 6:47pm EST
8h 42m 51s +67° 03' 20"
Reserved by DonC
SLOOH member since March 9th, 2013
23:52 UTC
3:52pm PST / 6:52pm EST
8h 42m 51s +67° 03' 20"
Reserved by DonC
SLOOH member since March 9th, 2013
23:57 UTC
3:57pm PST / 6:57pm EST
8h 42m 51s +67° 03' 20"
Reserved by DonC
SLOOH member since March 9th, 2013
00:02 UTC
4:02pm PST / 7:02pm EST
8h 42m 51s +67° 03' 20"
Reserved by DonC
SLOOH member since March 9th, 2013
00:07 UTC
4:07pm PST / 7:07pm EST
Gold Dust Cluster (M37)
Scheduled by SLOOH
00:12 UTC
4:12pm PST / 7:12pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
00:17 UTC
4:17pm PST / 7:17pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
00:22 UTC
4:22pm PST / 7:22pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
00:27 UTC
4:27pm PST / 7:27pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
00:32 UTC
4:32pm PST / 7:32pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
00:37 UTC
4:37pm PST / 7:37pm EST
Whale Galaxy (NGC 4631)
Scheduled by SLOOH
00:42 UTC
4:42pm PST / 7:42pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
00:47 UTC
4:47pm PST / 7:47pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
00:52 UTC
4:52pm PST / 7:52pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
00:57 UTC
4:57pm PST / 7:57pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
01:02 UTC
5:02pm PST / 8:02pm EST
NGC 2955
Reserved by SamuelD
SLOOH member since November 16th, 2004
01:07 UTC
5:07pm PST / 8:07pm EST
Spiral Galaxy M65
Scheduled by SLOOH
01:12 UTC
5:12pm PST / 8:12pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
01:17 UTC
5:17pm PST / 8:17pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
01:22 UTC
5:22pm PST / 8:22pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
01:27 UTC
5:27pm PST / 8:27pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
01:32 UTC
5:32pm PST / 8:32pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
01:37 UTC
5:37pm PST / 8:37pm EST
Camel's Eye Nebula (NGC 1501)
Scheduled by SLOOH
01:42 UTC
5:42pm PST / 8:42pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
01:47 UTC
5:47pm PST / 8:47pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
01:52 UTC
5:52pm PST / 8:52pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
01:57 UTC
5:57pm PST / 8:57pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
02:02 UTC
6:02pm PST / 9:02pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
02:07 UTC
6:07pm PST / 9:07pm EST
Al Gieba (Gamma Leonis)
Scheduled by SLOOH
02:12 UTC
6:12pm PST / 9:12pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
02:17 UTC
6:17pm PST / 9:17pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
02:22 UTC
6:22pm PST / 9:22pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
02:27 UTC
6:27pm PST / 9:27pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
02:32 UTC
6:32pm PST / 9:32pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
02:37 UTC
6:37pm PST / 9:37pm EST
Hamburger Galaxy (NGC 3628)
Scheduled by SLOOH
02:42 UTC
6:42pm PST / 9:42pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
02:47 UTC
6:47pm PST / 9:47pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
02:52 UTC
6:52pm PST / 9:52pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
02:57 UTC
6:57pm PST / 9:57pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
03:02 UTC
7:02pm PST / 10:02pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
03:07 UTC
7:07pm PST / 10:07pm EST
Splinter Galaxy (NGC 5907)
Scheduled by SLOOH
03:12 UTC
7:12pm PST / 10:12pm EST
Jupiter
Reserved by MaxC
SLOOH member since August 11th, 2014
03:17 UTC
7:17pm PST / 10:17pm EST
UFO Galaxy (NGC 2683)
Reserved by MaxC
SLOOH member since August 11th, 2014
03:22 UTC
7:22pm PST / 10:22pm EST
The Eyes (NGC 4435/4438)
Reserved by MaxC
SLOOH member since August 11th, 2014
03:27 UTC
7:27pm PST / 10:27pm EST
Propeller Galaxy (NGC 4536)
Reserved by MaxC
SLOOH member since August 11th, 2014
03:32 UTC
7:32pm PST / 10:32pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
03:37 UTC
7:37pm PST / 10:37pm EST
Caroline's Cluster (M48)
Scheduled by SLOOH
03:42 UTC
7:42pm PST / 10:42pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
03:47 UTC
7:47pm PST / 10:47pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
03:52 UTC
7:52pm PST / 10:52pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
03:57 UTC
7:57pm PST / 10:57pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
04:02 UTC
8:02pm PST / 11:02pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
04:07 UTC
8:07pm PST / 11:07pm EST
Sombrero Galaxy (M104)
Scheduled by SLOOH
04:12 UTC
8:12pm PST / 11:12pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
04:17 UTC
8:17pm PST / 11:17pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
04:20 UTC
8:20pm PST / 11:20pm EST
9h 47m 33s +11° 25' 43"
Reserved by MichaelC
SLOOH member since May 11th, 2010
04:22 UTC
8:22pm PST / 11:22pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
04:27 UTC
8:27pm PST / 11:27pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
04:32 UTC
8:32pm PST / 11:32pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
04:37 UTC
8:37pm PST / 11:37pm EST
Globular Cluster M5
Scheduled by SLOOH
04:42 UTC
8:42pm PST / 11:42pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
04:47 UTC
8:47pm PST / 11:47pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
04:52 UTC
8:52pm PST / 11:52pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
04:57 UTC
8:57pm PST / 11:57pm EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
05:02 UTC
9:02pm PST / 12:02am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
05:07 UTC
9:07pm PST / 12:07am EST
Globular Cluster M5
Scheduled by SLOOH
05:12 UTC
9:12pm PST / 12:12am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
05:17 UTC
9:17pm PST / 12:17am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
05:22 UTC
9:22pm PST / 12:22am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
05:27 UTC
9:27pm PST / 12:27am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
05:32 UTC
9:32pm PST / 12:32am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
05:37 UTC
9:37pm PST / 12:37am EST
Spiral Galaxy M65
Scheduled by SLOOH
05:42 UTC
9:42pm PST / 12:42am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
05:47 UTC
9:47pm PST / 12:47am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
05:52 UTC
9:52pm PST / 12:52am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
05:57 UTC
9:57pm PST / 12:57am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
06:02 UTC
10:02pm PST / 1:02am EST
Spiral Galaxy M98
Reserved by RichardB
SLOOH member since October 17th, 2014
06:07 UTC
10:07pm PST / 1:07am EST
Jupiter
Scheduled by SLOOH
06:12 UTC
10:12pm PST / 1:12am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
06:17 UTC
10:17pm PST / 1:17am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
06:22 UTC
10:22pm PST / 1:22am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
06:27 UTC
10:27pm PST / 1:27am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
06:32 UTC
10:32pm PST / 1:32am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
06:37 UTC
10:37pm PST / 1:37am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
06:42 UTC
10:42pm PST / 1:42am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
06:47 UTC
10:47pm PST / 1:47am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
06:52 UTC
10:52pm PST / 1:52am EST
Available!
Click here to reserve this slot
06:57 UTC
10:57pm PST / 1:57am EST
Saturn
Scheduled by SLOOH
about | team | partners | careers | advertiser | private-screening | contact-us