2018 Astrophotography competition (Closed)

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The Atik #Astrophotography competition 2018 is now closed for entries and votes.

The results are in! We’ve been busy counting your votes, and judging the 2018 astrophotography competition.

Again you’ve raised the bar, and far exceeded our expectations. We’d like to say a big thank you to everyone who entered. We’ve appreciated each and every submission, and it’s been wonderful to look through so many stunning pictures. We realise the amount of work and dedication that goes into each image, and we’re truly grateful that you’ve chosen to share these images with us.
It was almost an impossible task to choose this year, so we’d like to take this opportunity to showcase some of our many favourites.

So the winner is…

Jean-Baptiste Auroux for this image of Leo Trio – M65, M66 & NGC3628 with tidal trail

This is what Jean-Baptiste Auroux said about this image

This image was taken with an AtikOne 6.0 on a Takahashi TSA102 with reducer (f/6) ; AZEQ6 GT mount operated via EQMod ; LRGB filters.

Two nights were necessary to obtain sufficient data, the first one on 25th february 2018 at Fouras (17) and the second one on – May 2018 at Ury (77) (both in France). Almost half of the raw were selected, in order to retain only the best data.

This image shows the famous “Leo Triplet”, composed by spiral galaxies M65, M66 and NGC 3628.
This triplet is a classic object for amateur astrophotography, but a great challenge is to highlight the tidal trail of NGC 3628, which is very faint and extends over 300.000 light-years. This tidal trail is the result of past gravitational interactions with M65 and M66.

Among the different conditions required to highlight this tidal trail, one can mention a clear and dark sky, long exposure time… and a very sensitive camera ! The AtikOne 6.0 is perfect for this challenge, and needs to be cooled enough to detect the faint signal and separate it from the sky background. Even with all these criteria together, the tidal trail remains very faint on the raw files, so a precise (and long) processing is then necessary.

About me:

I am 39 years old, married and father of 2 little girls. I am interested in astronomy since my youngest age, and practise it in amateur since 25 years ; but I began astrophotography only since 4 years. I began with a DSLR, but quickly moved for CCD with an AtikOne6.0. This camera is a real “bomb” and the “all-in-one” concept in a compact camera is a great solution for me, since living in Paris I have to practice nomadic astrophotography… With this constraint, I only do few images during the year; but I Always try to get the best of my data during processing.

I am really very proud of being awarded in this 2018 contest – there was a high number of truly great images – and very happy to win an Atik 16200, which is a perfect match for my TSA102 corrected field. I cannot wait to make images with this new camera and share the results with you all !
Thanks Atik ! 🙂

And the runners-up are…

Jorge Juan García Mayo for this image of NGC 6543, Cat´s Eye Nebula

This is what Juan García Mayo said about this image

It is the sum of shots in discotinuous months, to complete a total of 32 hours with narrow band (H alpha and O III) and LRGB. The challenge was to solve the very bright core of the nebula, so long exposure photos have been taken for the outer layers and short for the core, combining them in HDR to reach the final result. I invite everyone to look for information about the Cat’s Eye Nebula, cause it has an extraordinarily rich and complex structure. Both the astrophotography and the processing sessions have been a nice motivation. All frames have been captured from my homely observatory, in my village Carbonero el Mayor (Spain).

About me:

My name is Jorge Juan García Mayo. I am 36 years old, and I live in Segovia (Spain). Since I was a child I have been attracted to astronomy, but I did not have my first telescope until 2012, a 10 inches manual Dobson to begin with observations. The love was immediate, and I began to be curious about astrophotography, improving the equipment for this intention. In 2015 I took my first photos with a reflex camera. I quickly switched to monochrome CCD, always with Atik cameras. In 2016 I built a small observatory that makes sessions more comfortable. Nowadays I use two telescopes, a small refractor and a 8 inches RC, along with the Atik 460ex mono. I hope to continue enjoying this wonderful hobby. Greetings.


Angelos Kechagias for this image of The Soap Bubble Nebula

This is what Angelos Kechagias said about this image

This photo was taken in my backyard roll-off Pegasus iv observatory last summer in Keratea – Greece. It was a very tough object, same in process especially with my f7 refractor. All of my subs were at Bin 1×1 with filters

R : 15x300sec ,G : 15x300sec ,B : 15x300sec
Lum : 15 x 300sec, HA : 88 x 600sec, Oiii : 39 x 600sec

We had very cloudy summer, maybe the worst I ever seen so it was the one and only photo I have achieved. I’m glad that I own an Atik 460 and 428 (both mono) as they are my best ccd’s I had so far. Thank you so much and I really appreciate you have chosen my photo as one of the best for your competition.

The winning entry will receive an Atik 16200 and both runners-up will receive an Atik GP

Highly commended

We couldn’t leave it there without mentioning some incredible images which really impressed the voters and the judges. Click on the images to get the full resolution.

Lastly, thank you so much to everyone who got involved to vote, we couldn’t have done it without you. We’ll be opening the 2019 competition very soon and if this year was anything to go by, we’re in for a real treat!