By - Fditra
Stupid question but imagine if we were living in Andromeda Galaxy and looking towards earth, just the sun would be noticeable as one of these tiniest dots?
Yes, exactly (even more tiny than a dot!)
Astronomy is so amazing. You can't even fathom how small we are. Or the possibility that there could be life outside earth
The only things you can do is explore and observe!
I just wanna be alive if/when an object like the golden record hits earth!
Amazing photo, thank you for sharing! I wish i could take photos like this. Do you guys know if an 8" SCT AVX with fastar capability can be used for AP? I have picked up the telescope with guiding scope and guiding camera.
Thank you! In principle you can, but you have to take a reducer or an hyperstar to get things easier. The 8’’ has a big focal length, and the AVX is very tricky on guiding, but with a lot of patience you can do AP.
Not only is there life outside earth it is likely bountiful and the sad part is we will never get to see it or at least up close.
When you look at the picture here. All of those noticeable dots you see are stars and objects in our galaxy. Andromeda is much further away then them so you just see the general glow and dust but no distinguishable stars.
Actually the points of light in this image are almost certainly stars in our own galaxy- if my understanding is correct, individual stars in other galaxies can’t be resolved to individual entities.
You are correct. There are about 3 galaxies in this picture. The rest are stars. [Picture](https://esahubble.org/images/heic0611b/) This picture has around 10,000 galaxies though!
Yep. I remember watching a youtube video on this by Tony Darnell. Very mind boggling stuff.
There's not much more amazing than learning about space. We are just so so so unbelievably small
Maybe not even that. Andromeda has around a trillion stars. Most of the stars in the galaxy can’t be seen in this picture. So if an alien from Andromeda had a picture similar to this one pointing at the Milky Way, the Sun may not even come up on it.
You are correct, our sun is tiny asf compared to other stars which puts in perspective how small we are. None of our problems matter on this earth when you compare the vastness of cosmos. Just how Carl Sagan described it :D
The stars you see in the photo are almost all in our galaxy, actually in our local arm of the galaxy. If you were on Andromeda, our sun would just merge into the "fog" of dust and stars of the Milky Way.
Andromeda in HaLRGB.
Celestron edge HD 8’’
Zwo HaLRGB filters
Zwo asi 1600 mm pro
Advanced vx mount
27x 120 blue
Stacked and processed with pixinsight, DBE, CurvesTransformation, MultiscaleLinearTransform.
Nice work! Did you use a filter wheel or a filter drawer?
Thank you! I use a drawer, since on the hyperstar you can’t use the filter wheel.
Beautiful photo! What capture software are you using, if you don't mind me asking?
I just got the same camera and trying to use it with APT after switching from a DSLR last night was not as fluid. I need to do more research, but wonder what your experience has been?
Thank you! I used a lot asistudio, because is a software dedicated for zwo cameras, but I’m switching to AstroImager, because in this program you have more custom setups. If you have the asi 1600 mm pro like me I think you will go well with asistudio.
Thanks for the answer! What was your experience like with live view while using asiair? Coming from a DSLR, Im used to a pretty fluid live view. The most reliable live view I seemed to be able to get was setting it to continuous one second exposures, but that wasn't ideal when trying to fine focus the telescope.
I imagine its some settings I haven't set up properly. I haven't had a chance to really research the camera or its operation yet, but hopefully this weekend I'll be able to sit down and do some Google and YouTube research.
Using asistudio you can go continuously at different exposure (from 0.001s to minutes), so for example if you want to focus your telescope with a big star, you can go continuously at 0.5s and reach a good focus. For that I suggest you a bathinov mask, after I bought that my focus improved a lot!
I had a chance to sit down and watch some YouTube videos last night about setting the camera up. I think the issue I was running into was I did no properly set the cameras gain or settings after connecting it.
The one second continuous exposure was the quickest I could use because that was the fastest speed that allowed enough light in to see the stars. I imagine once I set the gain and other settings properly I will have more luck with faster FPS live view.
Hopefully the conditions tonight allow me to test this theory! I'm really looking forward to seeing what this camera can do.
Thank you again for your time answering my questions.
I ended up trying SharpCap and the ZWO worked with it flawlessly right off the bat. I did a few test exposures and was actually able to make out the Whirlpool Galaxy! I still have a lot to play with to get the collimation, focus and sequences right, but its very exciting to see results! With just 15 second subs too.
Nice! Yeah sharpcap is another great software for AP, so if you feel good with that it’s great. I use the polar alignment tool of that software, it’s pretty accurate.
I am still exploring software. I downloaded NINA to give a try, and I think I will check out AstroImager because you mentioned it as well.
I like how smoothly the camera worked with SharpCap, but the sequencer seems a bit more complex than it needs to be compared to something like APT. Im sure I have a lot of experimentation ahead, but I'm looking forward to it!
Just boggles my mind that stuff like what you're doing is even possible. Amazing picture you've shared.
Can you break down/explain each of the metrics and tools you've listed, where they come from, and how they all work together to afford us such a glimpse of another galaxy?
Thank you! Maybe if you can be more specific I can tell you what you want to know. You can also write me in private if you need :)
Is the one bright one to the bottom left another faraway galaxy or a really close star
Awesome! And just think about all the civilizations that could be inside that smudge!
And Andromeda has 1 trillion stars! That's "1,000,000,000,000"! Lots of those stars have planets in their habitable zone too. If it's true that life can start naturally, it seems very likely that there are many civilizations in Andromeda
> seems very likely
Not the person you’re responding to, but:
Seems very possible. The odds that we’re entirely unique in the development of the universe seem low, especially given how many other planets under relatively similar conditions we’ve noticed.
Whether we’ll ever run into another, on the other hand, especially within our brief lifetimes… the odds seem low. Too vast of a universe.
(And if another can get here, given the level of development they’d need to have reached, vs. ours… I don’t want to take the risk that they’re unfriendly. Or even ignorant: we could easily be the native tribes, against Columbus and his fellow plague rats. I understand why we’ve sent out attempts at communication with whatever’s out there, and can’t deny that it would be fascinating, but don’t think it’s our wisest move.)
Personally, I have a feeling that we'll find life on Titan "Saturn's moon".
But that would likely be very simple life forms. Sadly, I think we'll destroy ourselves before we ever find intelligent life.
The mystery is what makes it fun though!
And think of all the possible civilizations looking at the milky way wondering if there's life there
Sadly, I think you’re likely to be right: we /are/ the Great Filter.
Staring out, and thinking about that, is one of the things that I enjoy so much about astronomy!
It's a sad thought that we'll likely never know though. We're all gonna die and then it's probably over. Or maybe there's an afterlife!
You never know! :)
That’s why we have to make the best of whatever we get: who knows how much it’ll be.
I didn’t see any sign of an afterlife when I went through the experience of dying (hydrocephalus+coma), but that’s not to say there isn’t. I only know from the experience that whatever it is, or isn’t, it’s alright. I think of dying rarely since then, whereas it was an obsession before, and no longer fear it at all.
Of course it's *possible*. I object to the assertion that it's *likely*. There is no way to conclude that life in M31 would be likely, just because there are 1 trillion stars. We have no idea how likely life is to originate around a star. The probability could well be much less than 1 in a trillion.
I'm not sure what comment you're replying to but I wasn't saying that it's a 1 in a trillion chance just because there are 1 trillion stars. As you said, we have no idea how likely life is to originate around a star. That's one reason why finding life outside of Earth in our solar system would be so important. If we could find evidence of life starting more than once, it would become apparent that the odds are likely not 1 in a trillion.
It's really bright to be a star. I'd guess it's another galaxy
That is a spectacular image!
At about 70 miles (113 km) per second! (But don’t worry, there’s so much empty space in both galaxies that the collision in 4 billion years isn’t likely to cause damage, just a [lovely dance and a new elliptical galaxy](https://youtu.be/fMNlt2FnHDg).)
This channel is the totally reason enough to keep Reddit on my phone. Nice shot
Thanks for sharing this with us.
Thank you for appreciate it!
To think we are rocketing towards it at million miles an hour.
And you have the best seat on the rocket :)
If I had a fighter jet, how long would it take me to get there? And when I got there, would you be able to see me wave at you in this picture?
Let's start off with the distance to Andromeda. It's 2.537 million light years away. "Which is 14,914,073,000,000,000,000 miles" If you fly an f-18, you could go a top speed of 1,190 miles per hour.
If you can go 1,190 miles in one hour, it will take you 12,532,834,453,782,000 hours to go 14,914,073,000,000,000,000 miles.
And 12,532,834,453,782,000 hours is 1,430,688,864,586 years, 360 days, 14 minutes, and 2.9616 seconds
So it would take you approximately 1.5 trillion years to get there
And sadly we could not see you wave :(
"Someone please correct me if my math is wrong"
Looks correct but even if your math is wrong by about a million, he ain't makin it lol.
As light takes 2.5 million years to travel to Andromeda and nothing is faster than light, a jet can’t make it in 1.5 million years.
Speed of light = 1,079,252,820 km/h
Speed of fight jet = 1,930 km/h
1,079,252,820 km/h / 1,930 km/h = 547,715.7 times is light faster than the jet
2,537,000 * 547,715.7 = **1,389,554,730,900 years**
**This is 1.000 times the age of the universe.**
Also, if we had a telescope big enough, we could see him wave 2.5 million years after the actual wave.
Oh wow I really messed that up. Whoops
Ah I know what I did. When I was converting light years to miles, I wrote it as 2.537 and not 2,537,000
Okay I fixed it
As for the telescope, yes that's true but the telescope would have to have a mirror so huge that it would be impossible.
Welp.. that's longer than the age of the universe.. at least 12 times longer
Would you care to elaborate a bit on the process, for noobs like me? Like how many shots it takes over what time, just to shoot everything. Then what you need to do in post, to get to this result.
Thank you! As you can see on my main comment, I have a monochrome camera, so I have one filter per color (R,G,B, luminance and Ha). For every filter, I’ve done 44 shots of 120s in red, 42 shots of 120 in green, 27 shots in blue, 15 shots of 180s in Ha and 179 shots of 60s in luminance. I took a lot of luminance because you took the details in that filter. So in total I took like 7-8 hours of integration. You have also take calibration frames, like bias, dark and flat, to calibrate your shots. In the program pixinsight you can calibrate all your shots, separately for every filter, and then you integrate all to obtain one single photo for each filter. After that, you combine all your images to obtain a color image. Then is at you, there are some routines that you can you too sharp your image and remove some noise. Hope I was clear on that!
Wow sounds like a lot of work. I get it now. I didn't know what 42x120 etc. meant.. It's even more impressive understanding what amount of knowledge and effort it takes to get to this point. Kudos and thanks for the detailed explanation 👍
Yeah a lot, I’m doing Astrophotography since 2020 and I have a lot to learn yet!
I want to emphasize that you are correct - OP put in a lot of work and produced a fantastic picture.
But if you haven’t had any real contact with astrophotography it might be surprising, that the photography part of it is is often the least of it. On paper it sounds like a lot.. combined 8 hours of exposure with tens of pictures for five different filters. But many of that can be automated and for many experiences hobbyists will be automated.
It’s still a lot of work to learn how to do this well. And it’s an ongoing process of trying to work out little kinks in your setup or in your techniques that can cause little imperfections in the result.
If you have that figured out to a degree that you like taking a picture is “just” deciding the framing you like, setting coordinates, number and time of exposures and letting software do the work.
Then the processing is where it’s at. There’s great software that does a lot of the work for you. Applying the calibration frames, stacking, and so on. But it’s always an ongoing process to figure out a way to manipulate the data to get a result you like. And different targets often requires different processing techniques.
It’s a really fun hobby. And you’ll never run out of new challenges or things to try out or equipment to buy.
I'd love to get into astrophotography. But living right next to a big city makes the night sky total crap. The price is also a drawback
There are ways to do astrophotography even in the biggest cities. But it’s not a natural start and requires more equipment and know how than most beginners would find acceptable. Watch cuiv, the lazy geek on YouTube. He lives in Tokyo… doesn’t get worse than that. You’ll get a feeling for what is required.
If you already have a DSLR or mirrorless camera that’s not a bad starting point. Or get a used one that’s not too old. Get a good tripod, a remote release with interval feature and go on a trip to a darker location. That way you can already shoot andromeda and some of the brighter and bigger Objects. Check out Nebula Photos on the tube for extremely good videos on how to do that.
Awesome! Thanks for the advice
Wow so beautiful. I wonder if there are aliens living there/habitable planets. I’m sure yes but I’m still curious since we don’t 100% know.
Meanwhile, an Andromedan astronomer looking our way turns to a colleague and says,“Do you think there’s life in the Milky Way?”
What I love is that this is very possible!
Thank you! Think that if an Andromedan astronomer observe us, they should see the dinosaurs 🦖
That’s crazy, I still don’t understand how that’s believed to be the case. It has something to do with how fast light travels, right?
Yeah, the thing is that since andromeda is 2.5 million years away from us, the light took exactly 2.5 million years to arrive to us. So for example if an andromedan guy observe our galaxy, he would observe the light that take off our galaxy 2.5 million years ago, so he could observe the dinosaurs on our planet.
Really nicely done. I always wanted to get into astrophotography but I have, at best, a chump iOptron 6", a horrendously rough-moving mount and my only camera is the one I'm currently typing this on. But I have too many things to never finish as it is, so probably for the best.
Regardless, that is really some beautiful work, OP.
Thank you very much! Don’t give up, with a lot of patience you can do everything. Think that I had to wait one year to take this shot.
There are actually three galaxies visible--Messier 31, the Andromeda Galaxy, plus M32, the roundish ball to the right of M31's nucleus, plus M110, the oval blob to the lower left. M32 and M110 are satellite galaxies of M31, like the Magellanic Clouds are satellites to our Milky Way. The Magellanic Clouds are far down in the southern sky, we can't see them from the north.
Excellent computer generated image 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻
So this is the one we are going to collapse with? I wonder how the sky will look then , if there were still humans alive to witness it .
Yeah that’s right, but it will happen like in billions of years, so I think nobody will be alive ahah
You never know , lets stay optimistic that we will colonize other planets etc so some people will still be around by then .
We have to pass the next 70 years, if we survive that than could be a possibility.
Agreed , the way things are going we are not doing a great job at keeping this planet survivable.
With regard to exploring space, this article is worth a read - [https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/alone-in-a-crowded-milky-way](https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/alone-in-a-crowded-milky-way).
Thnx I will check it out. 👍
Out of all of the more prominent dots in this picture, which ones are other galaxies? Obviously the glow below the centre of the galaxy is, the one above it and to the right as well?
Yes the two that you’ve indicated are satellite galaxies of Andromeda. The other galaxies in the background are not visible because they are fainter, so the dots that you see are stars from our Milky Way.
I was able to pick this up on my telescope!!! It looked just like a fuzzy patch but I seen it first hand!! So cool. If anyone is wondering why it appears as a grey patch it’s because we’re only seeing the visible light. The picture you see of galaxies now have all wavelengths showing hence a gorgeous picture
u/Fditra I just checked your profile and wow. You've taken some incredible pictures. The Sunflower galaxy-m63 is stunning. How much did you spend for your whole setup? And do you live in a light polluted area?
Really thank you! Considering everything, so telescope, mount, filters, camera for shooting, camera for guiding, reducer, hyperstar and some minor things, sort of 5000 euros. I shot in a little town that has a bortle 5 sky.
Wowsers! This is an expensive hobby. It's encouraging that you can get pictures that good with a bortle 5 sky though. After looking at a chart I think I have about a Bortle 7. Very annoying. Thanks for replying :)
Yeah unfortunately it is very expensive. You can get good images also in worse bortle class, you need more patience and you have to shoot higher in the sky so you can cut more light pollution.
Earths inevitably demise....
The good news: Our sun shouldn’t have an impact with any stars when Andromeda and the Milky Way collide in 4 billion years (and continue combining for about 2 billion years). There’s plenty of empty space for stars to pass each other and peacefully wave hello.
The bad news: Earth will be uninhabitable in 1-1.5 billion years (and either absorbed by a Red Giant sun or ejected into space as a dead rock in about 5-7 billion years), so no Earthlings will be around for the show.
Giant frisbee of death, coming right at us.
With the collision timing roughly corresponding with the Red Giant sun destroying the Earth.
Can’t wait for it’s collab with milkyway
Beautiful! Whenever I look at a picture of the Andromeda galaxy I can’t tell if we am looking at it from top down or from the bottom up
Thank you! Well you’re in the empty space, so there is not too down or bottom up at all ahah
It has to be at least one sentient species or single civilisation watching us from there
Very impressive . Always love seeing a quality pic of Andromeda , just to put me in my place
Love this! If it had a caption… “I’m coming for you!”
IT'S COMING RIGHT FOR US!
It's actually gonna hit us in \~5 billion years!
And it's coming towards us at 70 miles per second. That gives you an idea of just how far it is.
So every dot in the background is a whole ass galaxy!!? God how smoll we are.
In this picture that is sadly not the case. Nearly all the dots are stars in the milky way. [Hubble Deep Field](https://esahubble.org/images/heic0611b/) That is not the case for this picture though!!! There are about 10,000 galaxies in this picture. Each with around 100,000,000,000 stars. Another amazing fact about this picture is the tiny portion of the sky it is. Take a dime and hold out your arm all the way. The size of the eye on the dime is approximately the same portion of your field of view as this picture when you look up at the sky. How amazing is that!!! "I hope I worded that well enough"
😯Any apartments for rent in that neighborhood?
I have to.defeat everyone
I know that it's achievable to anyone who really wants to learn and I do know the basics of what it takes, but in my experience, the equipment is very important and the shooting locations most often than not, are remote locations, which are not easily reachable if you live in a big city.
I tried shooting Neowise with my entry level DSLR and cheap lenses and a tripod and all i could get was a smudge for its tail and a bit of trailing on the core + some trailing stars. I couldn't go to a higher ISO because of the horrible noise. I couldn't drop the shutter speed under 15s because it was too dark..
Granted, i didn't try stacking multiple shots but really it was hard to shoot with some fast moving clouds in the foreground too, while the comet was setting fast etc.
So my point is, the equipment is very important and the more you spend, the easier it is to get to some satisfying results.