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Posts Made By: Maurice Clark

January 14, 2004 06:53 AM Forum: Film Astrophotography - Imaging and Processing

A couple for the experts! part 1

Posted By Maurice Clark

Hi everyone.

I have been trying to rework some of my old astrophotos that I scanned recently and am having some problems with uneven field illumination, mainly vignetting. I have tried using Berry's method of subtracting a blurred version of the image, but the result is too dark. I have also tried using gradients as suggested by Jerry Lodriguss, however that does not work because in many of my photos, the background does not drop smoothly from the centre outwards. The centre is slightly darker, then there is a brighter ring covering about 2/3 of the image before the illumination falls off rapidly towards the edge. Also I find that using this method really gives problems for the colour balance.

Below is one of the images I am trying to improve. It is of comet 2001A2 LINEAR which was a wonderful sight during May and June of 2001. In the image, the tail of the comet extends the full width of the field, however the vignetting makes it very difficult to enhance the tail and make it more visible.

If anyone would like to have a go at this image and get rid of the vignetting, I would be very interested in hearing what you did. I am sure many others would also be interested.

I have Photoshop, Paint Shop Pro, CCDSoft, and AIP4Windows to work with and all suggestions are welcome. I am also posting my results with this image so far.



January 14, 2004 12:53 PM Forum: Religion

Re: the bible said so...

Posted By Maurice Clark

LOL!!!!! Love it!!!!!


January 14, 2004 01:13 PM Forum: Religion

Bush's speech on NASA

Posted By Maurice Clark

Just finished listening to Bush's speech on NASA via the internet. Typical politician's speech. Long on flowery words but short on detail!

A couple of things I did manage to pick out though. The shuttle is to be retired by 2010. The new launch vehical is to be ready by 2014. So that means at least 4 years when NASA will have nothing for manned launch.

The only comments about paying for going to the moon and the new launch vehical were for a small increase in NASA's budget and for the rest of the money to come from re-directing funds within NASA. About $11 billion I think he said! This could be a BIG worry. What sort of programs could take a hit big enough to fund that sort of amount? Future unmanned missions? The next generation space telescope?

I await the details with interest.


January 18, 2004 09:47 AM Forum: Religion

Have a laugh!

Posted By Maurice Clark

Hi everyone,

I suppose this really belongs in the "Off Topics" forum, but seeing as how this place occassionally (?!!) gets a little heated, I though I would post it here. It was sent to me by a Singaporean friend. Enjoy.


In case you needed further proof that the human race is doomed through stupidity, here are some actual label instructions on consumer goods.

On a Sears hairdryer: Do not use while sleeping.
(Damn, and that's the only time I have to work on my hair).

On a bag of Fritos: You could be a winner! No purchase necessary. Details inside.
(the shoplifter special)?

On a bar of Dial soap: "Directions: Use like regular soap."
(and that would be how???....)

On some Swanson frozen dinners: "Serving suggestion: Defrost."
(but, it's "just" a suggestion).

On Tesco's Tiramisu dessert (printed on bottom): "Do not turn upside down."
(well...duh, a bit late, huh)!

On Marks & Spencer Bread Pudding: "Product will be hot after heating."
(...and you thought????....)

On packaging for a Rowenta iron: "Do not iron clothes on body."
(but wouldn't this save me more time)?

On Boot's Children Cough Medicine: "Do not drive a car or operate machinery after taking this medication."
(We could do a lot to reduce the rate of construction accidents if we could just get those 5-year-olds with head-colds off those forklifts.)

On Nytol Sleep Aid: "Warning: May cause drowsiness."
(and...I'm taking this because???....)

On most brands of Christmas lights: "For indoor or outdoor use only."
(as opposed to...what)?

On a Japanese food processor: "Not to be used for the other use."
(now, somebody out there, help me on this. I'm a bit curious.)

On Sainsbury's peanuts: "Warning: contains nuts."
(talk about a news flash)

On an American Airlines packet of nuts: "Instructions: Open packet, eat nuts."
(Step 3: maybe, Delta?)

On a child's superman costume: "Wearing of this garment does not enable you to fly."
(I don't blame the company. I blame the parents for this one.)

On a Swedish chainsaw: "Do not attempt to stop chain with your hands or genitals."
(Oh my God ...was there a lot of this happening somewhere?)

February 5, 2004 06:18 AM Forum: Religion

Iraqi sports

Posted By Maurice Clark

Just saw this posted on the BBC news website. Would you really want to wrestle with these guys when they have a coach like that!!????? :^) I bet not too many miss training!!!!!!

The caption read:- "Iraqi wrestlers get in training as the US administrator, Paul Bremer, announces a trip to America for the national team."



February 5, 2004 06:50 AM Forum: Religion

Just when you thought it was safe to fly! (I)

Posted By Maurice Clark

Seeing as how things can sometimes(?) get a little heated over here I thought I would post this and let everyone have a giggle.



Here are some conversations that airline passengers normally will never hear. The following are accounts of actual exchanges between airline pilots and control towers around the world.

Tower: "Delta 351, you have traffic at 10 o'clock, 6 miles!"
Delta 351: "Give us another hint! We have digital watches!"

O'Hare Approach Control to a 747: "United 329 heavy, your traffic is a Fokker, one o'clock, three miles, Eastbound."
United 239: "Approach, I've always wanted to say this... I've got the little Fokker in sight."

There's a story about the military pilot calling for a priority landing because his single-engine jet fighter was running "a bit peaked."
Air Traffic Control told the fighter jock that he was number two, behind a B-52 that had one engine shut down.
"Ah," the fighter pilot remarked, "The dreaded seven-engine approach."

The German air controllers at Frankfurt Airport are renowned as a short-tempered lot. They not only expect one to know one's gate parking location, but how to get there without any assistance from them. So it was with some amusement that we (a Pan Am 747) listened to the following exchange between Frankfurt ground control and a British Airways 747, call sign Speedbird 206.
Speedbird 206: "Frankfurt, Speedbird 206 clear of active runway."
Ground: "Speedbird 206. Taxi to gate Alpha One-Seven."
The BA 747 pulled onto the main taxiway and slowed to a stop. Ground: "Speedbird, do you not know where you are going?"
Speedbird 206: "Stand by, Ground, I'm looking up our gate location now."
Ground (with quite arrogant impatience): "Speedbird 206, have you not been to Frankfurt before?"
Speedbird 206 (coolly): "Yes, twice in 1944, but it was dark, -- and I didn't land."

A DC-10 had come in a little hot and thus had an exceedingly long roll out after touching down. San Jose Tower Noted: "American 751, make a hard right turn at the end of the runway, if you are able. If you are not able, take the Guadalupe exit off Highway 101, make a right at the lights and return to the airport."

"TWA 2341, for noise abatement turn right 45 Degrees."
"Center, we are at 35,000 feet. How much noise can we make up here?"
"Sir, have you ever heard the noise a 747 makes when it hits a 727?"

From an unknown aircraft waiting in a very long takeoff queue: "I'm bored!"
Ground Traffic Control: "Last aircraft transmitting, identify yourself immediately!"
Unknown aircraft: "I said I was bored, not stupid!"

February 5, 2004 06:52 AM Forum: Religion

Just when you thought it was safe to fly! (II)

Posted By Maurice Clark

A student became lost during a solo cross-country flight.
While attempting to locate the aircraft on radar, ATC asked, "What was your last known position?"
Student: "When I was number one for takeoff."

Taxiing down the tarmac, a DC-10 abruptly stopped, turned around and returned to the gate. After an hour-long wait, it finally took off. A concerned passenger asked the flight attendant, "What, exactly, was the problem?"
"The pilot was bothered by a noise he heard in the engine," explained the flight attendant. "It took us a while to find a new pilot."

One day the pilot of a Cherokee 180 was told by the tower to hold short of the active runway while a DC-8 landed. The DC-8 landed, rolled out, turned around, and taxied back past the Cherokee.
Some quick-witted comedian in the DC-8 crew got on the radio and said, "What a cute little plane. Did you make it all by
The Cherokee pilot, not about to let the insult go by, came back with a real zinger: "I made it out of DC-8 parts. Another landing like yours and I'll have enough parts for another one."

Tower: "Eastern 702, cleared for takeoff, contact Departure on frequency 124.7"
Eastern 702: "Tower, Eastern 702 switching to Departure. By the way, after we lifted off we saw some kind of dead animal on the far end of the runway."
Tower: "Continental 635, cleared for takeoff behind Eastern 702, contact Departure on frequency 124.7. Did you copy that report from Eastern 702?"
Continental 635: "Continental 635, cleared for takeoff, roger; and yes, we copied Eastern... we've already notified our caterers."

While taxiing at London's Gatwick Airport, the crew of a US Air flight departing for Ft. Lauderdale made a wrong turn and came nose to nose with a United 727. An irate female ground controller lashed out at the US Air crew, screaming: "US Air 2771, where the hell are you going?! I told you to turn right onto Charlie taxiway! You turned right on Delta! Stop right there. I know it's difficult for you to tell the difference between C and D, but get it right!"
Continuing her rage to the embarrassed crew, she was now shouting hysterically: "God! Now you've screwed everything up! It'll take forever to sort this out! You stay right there and don't move till I tell you to! You can expect progressive taxi instructions in about half an hour and I
want you to go exactly where I tell you, when I tell you, and how I tell you! You got that, US Air 2771?" "Yes, ma'am," the humbled crew responded.
Naturally, the ground control communications frequency fell terribly silent after the verbal bashing of US Air 2771. Nobody wanted to chance engaging the irate ground controller in her current state of mind. Tension in every cockpit out around Gatwick was definitely running high. Just then an unknown pilot broke the silence and keyed his microphone, asking: "Wasn't I married to you once?"

February 6, 2004 08:02 AM Forum: Religion

Thought for the day

Posted By Maurice Clark

"Politicians and diapers have one thing in common. They should both be changed regularly and for the same reason."

Anonymous (I wonder why!!!!!) :^)


February 10, 2004 12:43 PM Forum: Religion

Speeding fines being related to income?

Posted By Maurice Clark

Hi all,

After all the complaints about taxes going up as income increases, how about your speeding fines being related to your income as well? Check this out on the BBC website.

Personally I am all for it!



February 10, 2004 04:13 PM Forum: Religion

Bush's military records released

Posted By Maurice Clark

Hi all,

Just saw this on the BBC website.