CCD DEEP-SKY ATLAS (CD-ROM)
CCD Deep-sky Atlas is a compilation of deep-sky images obtained with a CCD camera.
It includes well-known objects (the whole Messier catalogue) as well as less known
objects (e.g. NGC and IC catalogues). The Atlas is intended to provide a quick reference
to a large number of deep-sky objects. The images can be used in Supernova hunting and
variable star identification to give only two examples. More than 500 different deep-sky
objects were imaged (galaxies, nebulae and clusters). Several comet images are also
included (comets Hyakutake, Hale-Bopp and Kopff).
All images were obtained with several CCD cameras including an Hi-sis22 equipped with a KAF-0400L chip (768x512 pixels, 9x9 microns, 6.9x4.6mm2, 14bits, with anti-blooming) and a SBIG ST-7. Two different Telescopes were mainly used: (i) Celestron 14 and (ii) Meade 2045 housed in a roll-off-roof Observatory in Central Portugal. Both are mounted on the same fork mount (fixed pier) equipped with a Byers retrofit. Total integration times varied from 1min (open and globular clusters) to 5/20min (nebulae and galaxies). With few exceptions, images were obtained using 2x2 binning (384x256 pixels).
The images are available in several file formats:
Sixteen-bit images (PIC and FITS formats) can be displayed using the AIM freeware Programme included in the CD-ROM (AIM Directory).
AIM (Astro Image Manager) is a Freeware File manager of astronomical images (written by Philippe Martinole). It handles PIC and FITS image files. Images can be displayed and several options are available for adjusting the threshold levels. To use the AIM programme you will have to run it under Windows95. The minimum resolution is 800x600 with 65000 colours (1Mb graphics card). Resolutions of 640x480 are not adequate for running the AIM programme. The screen is divided into four different areas: - One area displays the current tree and directories. - Another area displays the image files of the current directory. Images can be visualized by double clicking the file. A second directory is also displayed for moving or saving files - Finally a different area displays the options for adjusting the threshold levels. The programme is able to edit and modify the headings of PIC and FITS image files. Images can be saved into PIC and FITS formats and vice-versa. AIM is a freeware programme and there are no restrictions concerning its use. AIM.ZIP should be copied to a directory (e.g. c:\AIM) and decompressed. The program can be launched by double clicking AIM.EXE. It is also possible to launch the AIM programme directly from the CD-ROM.
While the AIM programme is able to display and edit PIC and FITS Images files it lacks any image-processing capabilities. Several programmes are now available for this purpose. WinMips and Qmips32 (© Christian Buil, one of the pioneers of amateur CCD Astronomy) are good examples of software especially designed for the processing of astronomical CCD images.
Eight-bit JPG files can be displayed and processed using any of the currently available shareware programmes (e.g. Lviewpro, Paint Shop Pro...).
Image files and Text files were included into several directories on the CD-ROM: AIM- Astro Image Manager programmes (english and french versions of the AIM programme). CCD- Images (JPG files) of the telescope setup and observatory used to produce the CCD images included in the CD-ROM. CCD.txt on the same directory provides a description of the main techniques used for image acquisition and processing; COMETS- Comet images (FITS, PIC, and JPG formats). This directory contains images of comets Hyakutake (C/1996 B2), Hale-Bopp (C/1995 O1) and Kopff (22P/Kopff); DATABASE- Several databases of deep-sky objects (ASCII, *.xls and *.mdb formats). DEEPSKY- Subdirectories ATLASFIT, ATLASPIC, and ATLASJPG include images of deep-sky objects. Subdirectory CCDAtlas contains JPG image files of a CCD Atlas available on line at several ftp sites (see all_at.txt). Subdirectory CCDRest contains image restoration test (FITS, PIC, and JPG files) using several algorithms (see CCDrest.txt). Subdirectory CCDrev includes a comparison between POSS (Palomar Observatory Sky Survey) and images obtained with the C14 and a Hi-sis22 with long integration times. Subdirectory EMULSION includes a few emulsion-based astrophotographs (JPG files). HTML- HTML files. Open index.html using a browser (e.g. Nescape or Explorer) VIEWERS- AIM, Astro Image Manager programmes (english and french versions of the AIM programme). PicView (freeware). List of main deep-sky objects included in the CD-Rom (many images include more than one deep-sky object):
Clusters of Galaxies
NGC and IC Catalogues
NGC0001 to NGC1000
NGC1000 to NGC2000
NGC2000 to NGC3000
NGC3000 to NGC4000
NGC4000 to NGC5000
NGC5000 to NGC6000
NGC6000 to NGC7000
CCD Deep-Sky Atlas CDRom is produced by True Technology Ltd (UK)
This CD ROM contains over 400 images, including the complete Messier Catalogue, plus many NGC/IC Images. A Cometary section covering Comets ; Hyakutake, Hale-Bopp and Kopff is also present. An image display program called AIM is available in both English and French on this CD Rom. The FITs and PIC images can be both displayed and manipulated via this program. The AIM program can be run directly from the CD Rom with out placing anything on your hard drive.The FITs and PIC images can also be exported for image processing with QMiPs. The CD also contains many GIF and JPG images. These images are both positive and negative images and some contain text giving information about the Messier objects. Pedro Re' who is from Portgual is an excellent imager. His Deep Sky images have been published all over the world. The CCD Deep Sky Atlas CD Rom is a valuable reference tool for any image and a fine catalogue of the universe around us. We are the exclusive US dealer for this fine item. Price is $49.50 plus $3.50 shipping.
CCD & TELESCOPE (Numero 11, Hiver 1998) page 8
LE CCD DEEP-SKY ATLAS
Pedro Ré est un amateur Portuguais qui observe avec une Hi-SIS 22 antiblooming et un Celestron 14. Sa passion pour le ciel profond l'a poussé à faire des images de nombreux objects et à les editer sur cédérom. On y trouve, tous les objects Messier et 500 autres objects, NGC et IC. On y trouve également quelques comètes: Hyakutake, Hale-Bopp et Kopff. Comme son auteur l'indique dans le texte d'introduction, "cet atlas peut être utilisé pour chasser les supernovae ou bien pour identifier de nouvelles étoiles variables". Pedro a pensé à inclure des logiciels pour visualizer les images: l'exellent AIM écrit par Philippe Martinole. Les images sont généralement prises en binning 2x2. Elles sont d'excellente qualité, signe que le site d'observation est bon et que la technique est bien maîtrisée. Chaque image est pésentée sous trois formats: FITS, PIC et JPEG. Un répertoire contient des fichiers Excell que permettent de retrouver facillement les données sur les objects de l'Atlas. Un autre répertoire contient quelques champs de l'atlas du Palomar pour pouvoir comparér avec les images. Enfin, il y a une présentation de l'observatoire avec photos et description du matériel. Cet atlas constitue une excellent base pour l'amateur débutant voulant comparer ses images et apprendre quelques techniques de base.