Jupiter and Saturn

Jupiter on October 25, 2021.
Saturn on October 25, 2021.

This past Monday, the 25th, I took some videos of Jupiter (left) and Saturn (right). As I understand it, taking videos works better for planetary imaging as opposed to doing long exposure as you would for DSOs. I haven’t really tried one vs the other yet.

Alone the videos don’t have a lot of visible detail. The purpose of the video is to capture a high number of individual frames These frames are then run through several programs. My process so far is to start with PIPP, It is used to stabilize the video footage and center the object you’re attempting to image. In my case, I also use it to change the file format of the video to a format/encoding that the next program, AutoStakkert (or AS!) can use better.

AutoStakkert is used to align and stack the images or, in my case, the frames from the video into a single image. Thus far I have just used the basic default settings when stacking the Jupiter and Saturn videos.

The next program I use is called RegiStax. It can also do image stacking on its own, but in this case, I used it for its wavelet feature, which I don’t fully understand, yet. It helps clean up the image and pull out some of the details that you may not otherwise be able to see. Finally, I used GIMP to adjust the colors and levels a little and to crop the images and correct for the lens/mirror effect common with telescopes.

As I learn the process of stacking I’ll write up a post with my experiences, and perhaps some screenshots, or maybe even a video about what I learned. Be sure to stay up to date by subscribing to the YouTube channel, or follow me on Facebook, or Twitter @SmasSky

Here is an example of the before and after stacking.

Jupiter Saturn