Which astrophotographer is not eager to become acquainted with the southern sky at a top level location and to acquire long- and short-focal-length images of the southern jewels using high-end equipment?
In the new moon phase around March 1st, 2014 this dream came true for the CEDIC Spotlight Team consisting of Bernhard Hubl, Christoph Kaltseis, Wolfgang Leitner and Herbert Walter (unfortunately Herbert Raab was not able to participate).
With pleasure we followed the friendly invitation of Daniel Verschatse to his Hacienda Los Andes (www.haciendalosandes.com), a new astrofarm in Chile, which offers besides an excellent sky and first-class equipment also an outstanding service (both in astrophotography and in accommodation and food services).
The following equipment was provided by Daniel:
Additionally to this list of setups each of us brought two DSLRs and a number of small- and wide-angle lenses. So each night we operated up to ten cameras in parallel during a time span of nearly three weeks. Planning and coordinating this huge number of different setups within our team was a true challenge, which we could only master by using the planning tool of CCD-Guide (www.ccdguide.com).
During the three fantastic weeks that we stayed at Haciend Los Andes, we were able to collect more than 500 GB of raw data. Therefore we think that image processing will take a while and our goal is to have all images ready in about a year. However, on the following pages we want to share some of our results with you.