Capturing the Cosmic Light – A Handbook of Astrophotography


The Handbook of Astrophotography is the first book dedicated to Astronomical Imaging through modest equipment, and the first to be published in India. It is a chronicle of the techniques learnt and employed by the author and is by no means proprietary. It is assumed that the reader is equipped with the basic knowledge to use a digital camera. After showing the many methods to capture the Cosmos, the book shows how to process these images. It is designed to be a handbook and not a user manual. The author hopes that the reader will be confident in astronomical imaging and develop his/her own techniques after reading the book. Sathyakumar started Astrophotography in January 2006 with a homemade wooden star-tracking mount and a camera borrowed from a friend. He later used his homemade Newtonian reflector telescope and an inexpensive digital camera to capture photos of the Moon. With an MSc in Aerospace engineering from the University of Salford, Manchester, he joined Opticstar Ltd, as a design engineer. There he was trained on the latest of astronomical instruments available for the amateur astrophotographer and eventually purchased the Celestron C8 Schmidt cassegrain telescope and the CG-5 Equatorial mount. Currently, he uses a GSO 6 inch RC telescope and an HEQ5-PRO computerized mount as well as an Orion 80ED Apochromatic telescope for astrophotography. He also owns an Astrotrac to take wide field vistas of the Cosmos. He is now employed as a Scientific Officer at Karnataka Science and Technology Promotion Society, Department of Science and Technology, Govt. of Karnataka.