Perseids Meteor Shower 2017

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The Perseids Meteor Shower is a yearly event in August as the Earth travels through the dust left behind by the Comet Swift-Tuttle as it orbits the Earth.

This year, the peak time was 1am on the 13th August, however, the bright Moon in the sky was going to wash out most of the visible Meteors and make photography a little tricky. Therefore, I decided to set the camera up and point North East towards the Perseus Constellation (where the shower gains it’s name) before Moon rise to capture some of the early starters.

The image below is the best of the bunch. If you look closely, you can actually see 3 Meteors that burnt up within this 20 second exposure. It’s amazing to think that these bright “shooting stars” are dust the size of a grain of sand!

What I love about this shot is not only is the Milky Way clearly evident, but also the Andromeda Galaxy is showing herself off too!

{Click image for a higher resolution, click Flickr Link in caption to view photo on Flickr}
Persieds Meteors - D810, AF-S 14-24mm f/2.8 @ 14mm, f/3.2, ISO3200, 20sec - {Flickr Link}
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Polaris Star Trails

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The Algarve is having some very clear evenings (and days too!) but the forecast is for patchy clouds over the coming days. The Moon is also not visible right now, therefore, last night I decided to make the most of the dark and clear sky.

Earlier in the day I went on a scouting mission to find something interesting to put in the foreground of a Star Trail photograph.

Interestingly enough, it’s the same location (different direction) that I shot my Sunset Photos last week. I wanted to create a circle around Polaris (AKA The North Star) so needed a view northwards. This spot was ideal, so I returned after darkness had set in.

After more than two hours in complete darkness on top of this hill with nothing but a herd of cows and the occasional Owl noise to keep me company,  I returned home with 195 long exposure (30 seconds each) shots.

These shots have been merged together in Photoshop to create the star trail. The ruin was lit on just the first shot with a small LED torch.

This effect of the stars moving is actually the earth rotating on its axis. Polaris is positioned near to the North Pole Axis (hence the name North Star or Pole Star) which is why it’s almost static while all the other stars appear to circle around it. 

{Click image for a higher resolution, click Flickr Link in caption to view photo on Flickr}
Polaris Star Trails - D810, AF-S 14-24 f/2.8 @ 14mm, f/2.8, ISO1600, 30sec (195 shots merged) - {Flickr Link}

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85% Waxing Gibbous

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With just a few days before Full Moon and 85% illuminated, the current phase is Waxing Gibbous which is the phase when there is more than 50% illuminated but not Full.

Not the sharpest Moon shot I’ve got which I can only think could be down to a small amount of haze in the sky.

{Click image for a higher resolution, click Flickr Link in caption to view photo on Flickr}

85% Waxing Gibbous
85% Waxing Gibbous – {Flickr Link}