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A Debate re Astronomical Images

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Author Topic: A Debate re Astronomical Images  (Read 362 times)
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« on: August 09, 2008, 07:44:57 pm »

Here is a question that has always bothered me, and there is no right and wrong answer! It concerns the orientation of images taken through telescopes etc.

An object viewed with the naked eye will appear a certain way, and this will depend upon one's latitude on the Earth. A camera will show the same view through its lens, however a camera attached to the eyepiece of a refractor will show an inverted image, back to front, while  the view with a diagonal attached, whilst more practical, will be right way up but laterally reversed.

The use of equatorial mounts and the like confuses matters further.

So the question is, given that it is no bother to use the rotation and flip functions of modern software, should one restore every view to the way it would have looked to the naked eye regardless of mirrors, lenses and non-level orientations of camera, or not?

Please discuss Smiley

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« Reply #1 on: August 09, 2008, 09:05:45 pm »

I don't think it matters provided that the orientation is indicated correctly. But being an old fogey I somehow still expect to see a "traditional" inverted image (as seen in a Newtonian, or a refractor without a diagonal) even though most people use scopes with a semi-inverting diagonal these days.

Personally I find "drunken" images of Saturn or Jupiter irritating, I do like to see them with the ring major axis / cloud belts running horizontal even though this is usually "wrong" in the "North (or South) at the top" convention because of the tilt of the ecliptic. It's easily fixable in the "final" tab in Registax, which few people seem to bother with.
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« Reply #2 on: August 11, 2008, 11:17:26 pm »

I would also say it's only a personal thing Paul as there is no up down left or right in space Smiley
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Declan McCormack
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« Reply #3 on: August 19, 2008, 08:03:59 am »

I think it doesn't matter with rotation when the photo is made to reveal the structure of an object (e.g. comet), only N&E direction indicated.
But when we need to display a relative position (e.g. constellations or planetary conjunctions) or a Moon image, it must be rotated in the right way to represent the naked eye view.

I do not rotate my images (because most of them are of "normal" rotation), but the rotation must be done when it is extra important (for example: an image which displays a positional angle of lunar occultation)
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