The book will, in jargon-free blow-by-blow terms, describe how to create the best astronomical images you can with the digital camera equipment at your disposal. It will explain the steps we go through to extract results from the raw-and-dirty original imagery, and then transform them into high quality pictures that you could hang on your wall.
The advent of CCDs, and more recently inexpensive webcams, has led to a much greater proportion of amateur astronomers becoming involved in digital imaging. The low price of the new Meade Deep Sky Imager - $299 (2005) - suggests that within a few years a simple digital camera will become a standard accessory for any telescope.
There are as yet few books available on this aspect of amateur astronomy. This situation is likely to change in the next few years and there are going to be lots of people out there asking questions like "Flat field? What does that mean?", and trying to work out how to get the best out of their webcam, CCD or Digital SLR. They will also be wondering what is the best software to use.
To summarise; this is a book that tells practical astronomers (and that includes some but not all professionals) what is needed to get from standing in the dark with a telescope and a camera, to showing your spouse, local society friends or even supervisor the astonishing images that can be obtained with simple equipment but the right software and knowledge of how to use it.
Aus den Rezensionen: "! Eine Starke des Buchleins sind zweifellos die zahlreichen ! farbigen Bildbeispiele, die oft eindeutigere Aussagen vermitteln ! Um sich ! einen Auberblick uber die zahlreichen Moglichkeiten der astronomischen Bildgewinnung und -verarbeitung zu verschaffen, kann ich das Buch ! empfehlen !" (VOLKER WITT, in: Sterne und Weltraum, 2007, Issue 7, S. 97 f.)
Acknowledgements.-The myriad advantages of image processing (introduction).- Choosing a camera.- Acquiring images (and choosing software).- Displaying images.- Image reduction.- Flat fields.- Dark subtraction.- Image transformations.- Image stacking.- Image mosaicing.- Image scaling and histograms.- Background gradients.- Image enhancement.- Image sharpening.- Image unsharp masking.- Image deconvolution.- Handling colour images.- Achieving colour balance.- CMY or RGB?- Other problems.- Handling image sequences and webcams.- Image acquisition.- Image quality techniques.- Automated image processing.- What is best for.- Planets.- Deep Sky.- Widefield imaging.- The pitfalls.- Postscript.- Notes on image contributors.- Appendices .- Software.- Hardware + Software Suppliers.- References.- Further reading.- Index.
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Grant Privett works for the Ministry of Defence in the UK, heading up the Advanced Image Processing Team.