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New: Diamond Steeltrack focuser with Steeldrive from Baader

June 17 2019, Stefan Taube

Diamonds really are astronomers’ best friends – at least since the Baader Diamond Steeltrack focuser has been available. It uses real diamonds in its drive system!

In contrast to conventional Crayford or rack-and-pinion focusers, the Diamond Steeltrack’s micronized drive system guarantees entirely backlash-free operation, is completely non-slip and torsion-free – and has a vertical load capacity of 6 kilograms!

Okularauszug Diamond Steeltrack an einem Celestron EdgeHD

Diamond Steeltrack focuser on a Celestron EdgeHD telescope

There are Diamond Steeltrack focusers available for Schmidt-Cassegrain telescopes, Newtonian telescopes and refractors.

The Steeldrive II motorized focuser drive with hand-held controller is now available:

Baader Fokussiermotor Steeldrive II mit Steuerung

Baader Steeldrive II motorized focuser drive with control unit

The Steeldrive II motorized focuser drive permits automated focusing of a telescope via computer, as well as precise and vibration-free focusing using the buttons on the hand-held controller.

A good focuser considerably enhances observing pleasure and is essential for high-end astrophotography. The Steeltrack focuser is currently the best possible solution available!

 

50th anniversary of the Moon landing: lunar globes of our companion in space

June 11 2019, Betty Lux

Since time immemorial the human race and human imagination have been fascinated by the Moon. Through a telescope or astronomical binoculars it seems so close and yet still it sometimes seems so far away. However scientific knowledge about the Earth’s satellite has multiplied in recent years.

The publishing house Columbus Verlag, one of the very first manufacturers of lunar globes, has created a completely new and revised lunar globe – exclusively for us! Because the relief map is intricately applied by hand, the result is a significantly higher resolution and brilliant image. This lunar globe represents high quality workmanship, made in Germany.

Lunar Globe by Columbus Verlag

What is on the far side of the Moon?

Not only scientifically fascinating, but also decoratively attractive is, for example, the lunar globe “The Moon” from National Geographic. The simple design of the aluminium base and the calming illumination makes this lunar globe a stylish interior accessory. Introduce this inspiring and exclusive ambiance into your home.

National Geographic The Moon

 

With this you can become an astronaut, without leaving Earth

This lunar globe from Sky Publishing with a diameter of 15cm makes a perfect gift for Moon addicts. This model also offers high-resolution image data at an attractive price.

Sky Publishing Mini Moon Globe

 

And if you are looking for something even more atmospheric: we have a Moon Lamp from National Geographic in our range.

National Geographic Moon Lamp

 

Whichever Moon accessory you would like to discover, you can now decide in comfort: here you will find our entire selection in our online shop. By the way we deliver globes free of charge within Germany!

 

Infographic: The Astronomy Highlights of Summer 2019

June 3 2019, Marcus Schenk

Summer and warm temperatures: now all those who were hibernating in the winter can venture outside for a glimpse at the stars. But unfortunately it also gets darker later and then, as if turbocharged, light again just a few hours later. So you need to make good use of the hours of darkness, because when the summer Milky Way stretches across the sky there’s so much to discover.

The new astronomical infographic “Highlights in the Summer Sky” shows you at a glance what is happening in the sky in the months from June to August. Also included: a short description of the events.

June 5: The Moon meets Mars

Just two days after the new Moon, the slender crescent Moon stands seemingly fragile as dusk falls in the evening sky. Inconspicuous at around 2.5 degrees further to the right you will find the 1.7 magnitude bright Mars.

June 10: Jupiter in Opposition

You can now observe the largest planet in the solar system all night. Jupiter is in opposition this month, so this is the best time for observations. The gas giant reaches a magnitude of 2.6 and is 640 million kilometers away. As night falls the planet emerges above the horizon in the southeast, later it quickly becomes brighter and gets easier to see. At around 1:15 CEST it reaches the meridian and is particularly good to see.

June 18: Mercury Half Phase

Mercury reaches dichotomy, that is, a phase in which it is half-lit. Like the Moon or Venus, Mercury displays different phases.

June 18: Mercury meets Mars

A very beautiful event takes place shortly after the middle of the month: a close encounter between Mercury and Mars. Our innermost planet passes Mars at a distance of just half a lunar diameter, 13 arc minutes. This event takes place just above the western horizon at around 21:30 CEST. To observe these two it’s best to use binoculars.

June 19: The Moon meets Saturn

This configuration takes place in the second half of the night and can be followed until sunrise. Our Moon and the ringed planet approach each other with a minimal separation of about 2°50′.

June 24: Mercury’s greatest eastern elongation

Mercury gradually leaves the evening sky but it can still be seen, and can initially be found with the naked eye. From the second half of the month it becomes more difficult to find since it is so faint, and you’ll need the help of binoculars. It reaches its greatest angular distance of 25° from the Sun on 24 June. It reveals an almost half-lit sliver to us with a size of 8 arcseconds..  You can find Mercury with a good pair of binoculars from around 22:00 CEST.

July 2: Chile Total Solar Eclipse

In South America the Sun will grow dark. The eclipse’s shadow comes from the direction of the Pacific Ocean and stretches across Chile with a totality duration of 2:30 minutes. Later, the shadow moves onwards over Argentina. The Sun will be relatively low during this eclipse which will enable beautiful shots of the eclipsed sun against the landscape.

July 5: Noctilucent Clouds

Now in June you will be able to see them: noctilucent clouds. When the summer Sun is between 6° and 16° below the horizon it sometimes illuminates extremely thin clouds of ice crystals that are at an altitude of about 80 kilometres. These clouds are indeed so high that they are in the mesosphere part of our atmosphere. For us it is long since nightfall, but these clouds catch a little sunlight and we see bluish white clouds illuminated, which are invisible by daylight.

July 9: Saturn in Opposition

At present we have the problem that, due to the Sun’s ecliptic, many planets are far to the south and so are not high enough in the sky to be visible. Because of this we inevitably face a struggle with air turbulence. Despite this, Saturn still is worth observing, even if it only climbs to a height of 18°. On July 9 it reaches its opposition and shines brightly in the sky with a magnitude of 0.1. It is competing with the brightest stars but we can recognise it by its yellowish colouring and a faint glow that differs from the flickering of the stars. Because of this you can find it straight away and you can easily capture it with a small telescope. Its rings appear tilted at 24° and we are looking from the north at the ring system in which we can easily recognise the Cassini Division.

July 14: Pluto in Opposition

Pluto is a hard-to-see dwarf planet that used to be classified as a planet, and can barely be distinguished from a star – at least if you don’t have a map at hand. Even so, it’s worth taking a look at this outpost of the solar system with a larger telescope. GoTo coordinates: RA: 19h33m40s, DEC: -22° 07′.

July 16: Partial Lunar Eclipse

In January we had to view this in the cold, but not today. We can observe this partial lunar eclipse in warm temperatures and at a reasonable time. It gets interesting for us at 22:01 CEST, at which point the Moon enters the umbra of the Earth. Over the course of the evening it will become up to 66% obscured before the umbra moves away again and eventually disappears at 1:00 CEST.

July 20: Moon Landing 50th Anniversary

50 years ago today the whole world looked towards the Moon: to three astronauts, pioneers of humanity, who dared to set out on the greatest adventure. Apollo 11 flew to the Moon and Neil Armstrong became the first person to set foot on a foreign celestial body. Let us celebrate this event, remember it, and look again today towards the Moon, perhaps even to the Sea of Tranquility, the landing site of this daring mission.

July 29: The Delta Aquariids

A small meteor shower in Aquarius which we can best observe after midnight. The Earth passes through trails of small dust particles which burn up when entering the atmosphere and become streaks of light. We can expect to see 20-25 meteors per hour provided we find a dark place for our observation.

August 9: The Moon meets Jupiter

Similar to in July, the Moon and Jupiter meet again today. When it gets dark they stand dominant and bright in the sky above the southern horizon.

August 10: Mercury’s greatest western elongation

Now Mercury reaches its greatest angular distance of 19° from the Sun. Whilst before it was an object of the evening skies, for around 10 days from today we can discover it in the morning sky. On August 10 Mercury rises at 4:30 CEST, it then disappears into the haze, then it rises higher and we have a good chance of seeing it in the sky around 4:50 CEST.

August 12: The Moon meets Saturn

We have almost full Moon, so the sky is brightly lit, but Saturn shines clearly visibly and just 5° from the Moon. If our gaze wanders a little more to the right and a few degrees higher, we will also find Jupiter.

August 12: The Perseids

Every year we look forward to the most beautiful shooting stars of the year: the Perseids. In the morning of August 12 the meteor shower reaches its peak. Up to 100 shooting stars per hour rain down, thundering through our atmosphere at incredible speeds of around 216,000 km/h. The peak will be reached between 22:00 CEST and 4:00 CEST. Unfortunately this year the almost full, and far too bright, Moon will disrupt the display so that we are likely to only be able to observe the very brightest shooting stars. It’s best to find a spot away from the direct glare of the Moon. We have the comet 109P/Swift-Tuttle to thank for this meteor shower, which lost part of its mass on its orbit around the Sun. Whenever the Earth crosses the orbit of the original comet in August, the Perseids shoot across our corner of the sky.

August 23: Occultation of the Hyades by the Moon

Unfortunately, it’s not until the early hours that we can observe an interesting occultation of the star 61 Tau by the Moon. Such occultations of the Hyades star cluster are particularly interesting because it contains many bright stars and we can sometimes even see multiple occultations. Around 4:40 CEST the Moon approaches from its illuminated side and snuffs out the 3.7 magnitude bright star. The star remains hidden behind the Moon for a little more than an hour. At 6:00 CEST, as if out of nowhere, it suddenly reappears. Important: point your telescope at the Moon a few minutes beforehand to ensure you don’t get the timing wrong.

August 27: Occultation of Delta Geminorum (Wasat) by the Moon

The Moon has migrated to the next constellation in recent days and is about to enter its new Moon phase. Before sunrise, it occults a really bright star: this time the double star 55 Gem in the constellation Gemini. The Moon, at this stage just a thin sickle-shape in the sky, approaches from its illuminated side. At 5:50 CEST the time has come: the star disappears behind the Moon and reappears nearly an hour later at 6:40 CEST. But by then the Sun has long since risen, the sky is bright and so the reappearance is difficult to observe with a telescope.

Now available: the GreenLine roll-off roof observatory from DomeParts!

May 21 2019, Stefan Taube

We are pleased to offer the roll-off roof observatory GreenLine from DomeParts GmbH – now available at a great price. You can now realise your dream of having your own very own garden observatory. It’s also perfect for astronomy clubs.

The Greenline roll-off roof observatory is available in three sizes:

The larger size GreenLine Plus is perfect for astronomical organisations.

DomeParts GreenLine

A GreenLine observatory in the exhibition area of the astronomy fair AME.

The advantages of a roll-off roof observatory compared to a classic dome observatory are clear:

  • The observatory looks like a typical garden shed and so blends in perfectly in any domestic setting. The wooden GreenLine is not only well-designed, but looks great too.
  • The roof can be fully retracted giving you an unobstructed view of the sky in every direction.
  • The inside of the cabin adjusts quickly to the ambient temperature, eliminating turbulent air currents which can often arise with a dome opening.
DomeParts GreenLine Omegon

GreenLine observatory with an Omegon RC on an iOptron CEM60 mount.

The open roof of the roll-off roof observatory offers plenty of room to manoeuvre even for a large-aperture telescope. Here in the picture the GreenLine observatory is equipped with an Omegon RC Truss telescope on an iOptron CEM60 mount.

The delivery time for a GreenLine roll-off roof observatory is around one month. You can put the observatory together yourself or let our construction team build it for you.  Get in touch with us: We’re happy to give you advice and provide you with a quote.

Only until the end of August: 6″ triplet carbon-fibre apochromat almost 800€ cheaper.

May 2 2019, Marcus Schenk

Bags of light, high resolution and pin-sharp stars: This Omegon 150mm aperture triplet apochromat provides you with a truly excellent image – clearly exceeding the performance of a reflecting telescope. The benefit to you – superb high-contrast observing. And astronomy photos that will delight both yourself and others.

One-off special offer for your dream apochromat – Purchase this Omegon 150/1500mm carbon-fibre triplet now for only 4999€ – saving you 791€!

 

Carbon APO

 

The advantages in a nutshell

  • ED glass triplet design apochromat – with 150mm aperture and 1000mm focal length
  • multi-coating – for high contrast and pinpoint star images
  • simple camera alignment – 360°, 2x rotatable 3″ focuser
  • carbon-fibre OTA – rigid and durable design
  • sturdy tube-ring clamps plus case included

This 6″ carbon-fibre triplet apochromat comes in two versions

  1. Omegon Pro APO 6″ ED triplet carbon-fibre OTA now for only 4999€
  2. Omegon Pro APO 6″ ED triplet carbon-fibre OTA with field flattener now for only 5199€

 

You can also request a test report for your apochromat – for a certificate demonstrating the high quality of this telescope.

Testprotokoll des Omegon APO Triplet 150/1000mm

Perfect for ambitious amateur astronomers, clubs and observatories – buy your apochromat now. Or let our experts advise you.

This special offer is valid until 31.08.2019.

The Celestron CPC 800 EdgeHD Now Available as an Affordable Moon-Set

April 18 2019, Stefan Taube

Get the Celestron CPC Deluxe 800 EdgeHD telescope in an affordable set with high-grade accessories now and experience lunar and planetary observation like never before!

Together with the telescope, the set comprises:

The scope of supply also includes an eyepiece with a focal length of 40 millimeters, which is very practical for gaining a general overview. It is, however, unsuitable for high magnification observation that is desired when observing the Moon and the planets. Therefore, the two Morpheus eyepieces make an excellent addition. The neutral density filter dims the dazzling moonlight and increases the contrast during lunar observations.

The entire set can be yours for only 3,709 €. Save 397 € compared to the manufacturer’s recommended retail price! Benefit from this unrivalled value for money offer now and observe not only the moon but also the Jupiter and Saturn oppositions this summer!

 

Celestron CPC 800 EdgeHD

Celestron SC 203/2032 CPC Deluxe 800 EdgeHD GoTo

 

For years this telescope has been a favourite among the beloved Celestron CPC Deluxe Family. The series offers compact Schmidt-Cassegrain-lenses with highly stable and easy to transport fork mounts. Thanks to the built-in GPS and the advanced computer control, you are good to go in no time – even without prior knowledge. Reach for the stars with the GoTo hand control box! Now you have all the fascinating celestial objects in the palm of your hand.

In the deluxe version of this series, Celestron merges telescopes with corrected EdgeHD lenses together with the CPC mount. So you can enjoy crystal clear images right until the edge of the field of view!

Our offer for the CPC Deluxe 800 EdgeHD set is valid until the end of September 2019!

Special price on Meade LX600 telescope!

April 11 2019, Stefan Taube

The telescopes of the LX600 series from Meade Instruments are ideal for transportation under dark skies. The telescopes can be quickly set up and precisely controlled thanks to the Starlock camera system. We are currently offering the Meade telescope ACF-SC 254/2032 Starlock LX600 for just 5,299 euros. Save 1,401 euros!

Meade LX600

Meade telescope ACF-SC 254/2032 Starlock LX600

The lenses of the LX600 series are of the type schmidt-cassegrain telescope, or SC telescope for short. These are mirrored telescopes with a hole in the main mirror which enables light to reach the ocular. The positioning of this ocular has the advantage of barely changing the position used to look into the ocular when adjusting to look at various objects in the sky: Once the telescope has been adjusted to a height that is comfortable for you, it remains at that height.

The SC telescopes from Meade are fitted with a special corrective lens that counteracts the typical imaging faults of SC lenses. Meade calls this optical design ACF (Advanced Coma-Free). The observer not only has a sharp focus of the stars in the centre, but also of those on the edge of the viewing field.

Other benefits of the LX-600 series:

  • The SC lenses are, by the nature of their construction, very compact and, therefore, easy to transport. These lenses usually have an aperture ration of f/10, thus a very high focal distance. The LX600 telescopes have an aperture ratio of f/8. This makes them even more compact and they require a shorter exposure time for photography.
  • The LX600 telescopes are permanently installed in a very stable fork mount.  The disadvantage of this mounting method is its high weight, compared to telescope systems in which the mount can be completely disconnected from the lens. With the LX600 telescopes, you can split the fork mount into two pieces, thus eliminating this disadvantage, at least in part.
  • A real highlight of the LX600 telescopes is the Starlock system, which consists of two cameras. These take on a number of tasks: Automatic correction of the periodic error, precise location of the selected object in the sky and, in particular, autoguiding. The latter refers to the fact that the Starlock system always maintains the selected sky objects precisely in the telescope’s field of view – an important requirement when it comes to astrophotography! Here, it is carried out automatically without the need for a separate computer.
Meade LX 600 Starlock

Meade LX 600 Starlock

And speaking of astrophotography: If you do not only wish to observe, but also to record long-exposures of objects with weak light, the LX600 telescope can be retrofitted with an X wedge at any time. This polar wedge converts every LX600 with azimuthal set-up into a camera with parallactic mount.

In the download section of ACF-SC 254/2032 Starlock LX600, you will find an English language test report from the magazine Sky & Telescope. The conclusions of the tester are clear:

I can confidently say that it’s the best telescope of its type that I’ve yet tested for astrophotography.

Do not miss out on the opportunity to acquire a very advanced telescope system at a relatively cost-effective price: Our special offer for the ACF-SC 254/2032 Starlock LX600 is valid only until 30 June 2019!

 

iOptron mounts: A new addition to the CEM family

April 4 2019, Stefan Taube

CEM series mounts from iOptron are already widely used in the US and are becoming increasingly well known in Europe too. The CEM25P mount for portable astrophotography with Newtonian telescopes of up to 6 inches aperture and the CEM60 mount for use in observatories have proved particularly popular.

With their new CEM40 and CEM40-EC with encoders, iOptron now provides a middle range mount capable of carrying loads of up to 18 kilograms. The CEM40 is hence ideally suited for astrophotography with telescopes of up to 8 inches (200 millimetres) in aperture.

iOptron CEM40

The CEM40 is the latest addition to iOptron’s CEM series

The abbreviation CEM stands for centre-balance equatorial mount, i.e. for equatorial mounts which are supported at their centre of gravity. This design ensures an excellent relation between weight and carrying capacity. The CEM40 weighs only 7 kilograms and yet can carry OTAs up to 2.5 times heavier. The amazing carrying capacity of CEM mounts has been constantly reaffirmed by our customers – especially regarding the CEM25P.

The CEM40 comes equipped with an electronic pole finder, known as ‘iPolar’. A laptop is required to operate this however, so the CEM40 is particularly suitable for astrophotographers who already use a laptop for their camera. iPolar and built-in GPS provide easy and accurate alignment and GoTo computer control initialization.

The encoders installed in the CEM40-EC version ensure very high GoTo accuracy and allow worm gear permanent periodic error correction – a problem that all mounts suffer from. The CEM40-EC does away with the need for guiding with your astrophotography.

The CEM family now covers a wide range of load carrying capacities, offering a suitable model for every budget!

We are looking for a translator (m/f/d) for German – English

March 26 2019, Joshua Taboga

Thanks to our excellent customers, Astroshop is growing every year.  So, we are on the look-out for a new colleague, to join us with an enthusiasm for amateur Astronomy and would like to turn a hobby into a career!

We are looking for a translator (m/f/d) German – English

You will deal with the translation and proofreading of shop content and blog posts from German into English.

We expect:

  • Job experience in translation
  • English native speaker
  • Excellent knowledge of amateur Astronomy
  • About 10 hours/week
  • Open to new technology
  • Using of SDL Trados Studio a plus

We offer:

  • Interesting translation material
  • Fair compensation

Type of employment:
freelance

Place of work:
Home office or at our HQ in Landsberg am Lech or in our Munich office

More about the company behind Astroshop, nimax GmbH, is available at nimax.de.  We are happy to answer any questions or concerns: Anita Maier, HR, Tel: +49-(0)8191-94049-82.  If you would like to apply, send your application materials to jobs@nimax.de.

If you are interested in becoming part of our team, we look forward to hearing from you!  Apply now!

 

New: NB1 nebula filter from IDAS

March 25 2019, Stefan Taube

Luminescent emission nebulae, supernova remnants and planetary nebulae are all particularly beautiful objects pertaining to the night sky. This applies both to the simple process of visual observation, as well as to astrophotography. Nature illuminates such nebulae in specific spectral colours: the red light of hydrogen, the blue-green light of oxygen ions and also in the colours of sulphur and nitrogen ions.  Nebula filters enable these colours to pass through whilst blocking the diffused light of the natural luminance of the sky and of light pollution. The result is a marked increase in contrast.

With the Nebula Booster NB1, the filter specialists IDAS are introducing a new, very high-performing filter of this type onto the market, and one that is not overly expensive! As the transmission curve shows, the filter has high transmission and is permeable for all relevant spectral lines, with a surprisingly narrow passband: A real nebula intensifier!

Transmission curve IDAS NB1

 

The filter is ideal for photographing large nebula regions since it enables the typical colours of these objects to pass and blocks the disruptive skyglow. The filter quickly and completely cuts off near infrared up to 1100 nanometres. This is important since cameras are sensitive to this range, but telescopic lenses are optimised for the visible spectral range and are faulty in the infrared range.

IDAS Nebula Booster NB1

IDAS Nebula Booster NB1

 

The Nebula Booster NB1 is available with two versions which cover both of the common filter thread sizes and can be screw-fitted to the housings of eyepieces or cameras.

25.06.2019
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