• Stephen Strum

2020 Mars Imagery

Updated: 6 days ago



October 10, 2020


The best seeing I've had here for a few weeks. I was able to take video on Mars for about 40 minutes on Friday night, from 4:50-5:25 UTC. I took 2 minutes of video data every 5 minutes, ending up with 8 composite images that I put together in a loop that you can see below. I also have one of the better single frames below the video. As usual, I used my ASI224MC camera, Televue 2.5x Powermate, Baader UV/IR block filter with my 8" EdgeHD SCT on a Celestron Evolution mount.



October 8, 2020


Was able to image Mars for a time on the evening of October 7th, just before 11 PM CDT. Seeing wasn't bad for October, but not great. The ice field at the southern pole of Mars continues to really shrink versus a few months ago. Seeing conditions should be a little better the next couple of nights, so will try to get more data if possible. ASI224MC camera, Televue 2.5x Powermate, Baader UV/IR block filter with my 8" EdgeHD SCT on a Celestron Evolution mount.

September 16, 2020


Managed to sneak one so-so shot of Mars this morning in between the clouds. Ice cap at the southern pole of Mars is really small now as summer continues in that hemisphere. ASI224MC, Televue 2.5x Powermate, Baader UV/IR block filter with my 8" EdgeHD SCT on a Celestron Evolution mount.




September 4, 2020


Mars this morning right before sunrise in a bright sky with thin clouds in the way. Mars is 19.43" in apparent diameter and the southern ice cap is shrinking steadily. ASI224MC, Televue 2.5x Powermate, Baader UV/IR block filter with my 8" EdgeHD SCT on a Celestron Evolution mount.




August 4, 2020


Another very short imaging session but captured an image of Mars using my ASI224MC, Televue 2.5x Powermate, Baader UV/IR block filter with my 8" EdgeHD SCT on a Celestron Evolution mount. This was captured at 6:30 am local time, with a bright sky right before sunrise.




August 3, 2020


This was a very short imaging session since it was in the middle of work, but I captured a couple of minutes of video using my ASI224MC, Televue 2.5x Powermate, Baader UV/IR block filter with my 8" EdgeHD SCT on a Celestron Evolution mount. Note that the south polar ice cap has shrunk considerably in the past two and a half weeks (versus the 17th). Mars is also getting noticeably larger, though the physical size of this image is different than the one on the 17th. I'll need to resize the image to make them the same pixel dimensions so a true size comparison can be seen. Hopefully, Mars stays free of global dust storms during the next two months as opposition approaches.


July 17, 2020


I now have a Celestron C8 EdgeHD on an Evolution mount, so planetary imaging should improve from what I had been able to do before. This is the first image of Mars with the new telescope. Seeing was pretty good this morning, but dew was problematic and I couldn't keep the corrector lens clear which degraded the imagery a bit. Still, quite a bit of details is seen and Valles Marineris is visible in the center of the image. I used an ASI224MC camera along with a Televue 2.5x Powermate and a Baader UV/IR cut filter.




June 26, 2020


My first attempt at imaging Mars during the 2020 opposition was with a Celestron C90, a small 90mm Maksutov. I used an ASI224MC camera along with a Televue 2.5x Powermate and a Baader UV/IR cut filter. I was imaging on a photo tripod with no tracking or slow-motion controls, so the number of frames I was able to stack was limited. Still, not a bad outcome from the combination of a small telescope, poor mount, and still small size of Mars at the time the data was acquired.


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