Stars, star clusters, galactic nebulae and galaxies are famous photography targets of amateur astronomers. With today's capabilities of digital imaging an amateur astronomer is capable of making better pictures than the best professional observatories some decades ago. Have a look at Astronomical Image Data Archive (AIDA) for a bigger selection of astrophotography. (31 Images)

Antares RegionImage 1/31 Antares Region: The region around the brigt star Antares in the constellation Scorpius. The red stripe across the image was caused by an airplane. OrionImage 2/31 Orion: The constellation Orion. The camera was guided with a telescope and during exposure time I defocused it. With this trick one can see the constellation and the different colours of the stars. Otherwise the stars would be burned out and appear white. PlejadesImage 3/31 Plejades: Pleiyades - the seven stars. Other common names are: Subaru, gummi bear or baby buggy. The asterism looks a little like Ursa Maior. This was one of the first tries with a Lichtenknecker Flatfield Camera and is very out of focus. All stars are rings. Focusing f/3.5 is not very easy. — Minolta XD-7, Lichtenknecker FFC, f=500m f/3.5, Fujichrome RH 400, somewhere in 1997 Orion nebulaImage 4/31 Orion nebula: Messier 42, the Orion nebula. — 3.5/500mm Flatfield-Kamera, January 1997 h+Chi PerseiImage 5/31 h+Chi Persei: The double star cluster h and Chi Persei in constellation Perseus Stargazers on HaslibergImage 6/31 Stargazers on Hasliberg: Trails of star gazers during a telescope meeting on Hasliberg/BE.
Rising OrionImage 7/31 Rising Orion: Star trails of the rising constellation Orion. This picture was taken in 1998 while we were waiting for the big Leonid meteor shower which came one year later. Orion above ChurImage 8/31 Orion above Chur: Rising Orion above the city Chur, taken from the 18th floor of a building. Just for imagination what light pollution means. — Nikon D70, 24-85mm Zoom lens, 30s @ ISO 1600, 10 December 2004 Milky way LukmanierpassImage 9/31 Milky way Lukmanierpass: The milky way on Lukmanierpass. The foreground has been flashed to achieve mor depth on the picture. — Nikon D70, 120s at ISO 1600, 24mm at f/4.5, 11. Dezember 2004, 22:27 MEZ Mailand from LukmanierpassImage 10/31 Mailand from Lukmanierpass: View from Lukmanierpass towards south. One can see the light dome above Milano. They belong to the cities with the biggest light pollution in europe. — Nikon D70, 180s at ISO 1600, 24mm at f/4.5, 11. Dezember 2004, 23:51 MEZ Starry nightImage 11/31 Starry night: The starry sky above Lukmanierpass. The trees have ben flashed with internal flash of the D70. Interestingly the sky has a yellow-brown colour while the colours from the flash are correct. This is caused by different colour temperatures. Unfortunately I did not take this picture in NEF format and hence cannot modify the white balance. — Nikon D70, 120s at ISO1600, 24mm mit f/4.5, white balance sun, 12. December 2004, 02:25 MEZ Sarnen from GlaubenbergpassImage 12/31 Sarnen from Glaubenbergpass: View from Hotel Langis on Glaubenbergpass towards Sarnen down in the valley, covered by fog sea. The light dome behind the mountens is caused by Milano's light pollution. — Nikon D70, AF-S 24-85mm lens, f=24mm, f/5, 300s at ISO 800, white balance tungsten, graduation curve adjusted, 6 February 2005
Stargazers at Hotel LangisImage 13/31 Stargazers at Hotel Langis: Trails of stargazers at Hotel Langis on Glaubenbergpass. — Nikon D70, AF-S 24-85mm, f=24mm, f/5, 190s at ISO 800, white balance tungsten, graduation curve adjusted, 6 February 2005 Star trailsImage 14/31 Star trails: Trails of stars above trees and mountains. I set the white balance to 3000K because then the night sky appears blue, which is not scientifically correct but looks more natural ;-) If the white balance is set to sunglight then the night sky appears brown. I recommend using NEF for all night scenes or under illumination circumstances which are unclear. — Nikon D200, Nikkor AF-S 28-70mm, f=28mm, f/2.8, 480s, ISO 200, white balance 3000K, Glaubenbergpass, 22. April 2006 Polar star above firImage 15/31 Polar star above fir: The polar star above a fir tree. — Nikon D200, Nikkor AF-S 28-70mm, f=28mm, f/2.8, 960s, ISO 100, white balance 3000K, Glaubenbergpass, 22. April 2006 Circumpolar StarnsImage 16/31 Circumpolar Starns: Circumpolar stars with clouds on Mirasteilas 2006 in Falera. — Nikon D200, Nikkor AF-S 12-24mm 1:4, f=12mm, f/4, 30min, ISO 100, colour temperature 3000K, 24 September 2006 Image 17/31 : Image 18/31 :
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Image 25/31 : Image 26/31 : Milky way CygnusImage 27/31 Milky way Cygnus: The milky way in the constellation Cygnus. Milky way ScutumImage 28/31 Milky way Scutum: The milky way with the Scutum star cloud. Milky wayImage 29/31 Milky way: Milky way at the spring telescope meeting on Hasliberg Orion and MatterhornImage 30/31 Orion and Matterhorn: The constellation Orion is setting behind the famous mount Matterhorn. Picture taken from Gornergrat with the dome of the observatory in the foreground.
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