Nightscape photography: preparation. In recent years it seems to be fashionable to be able and to know how to photograph the Milky Way. No wonder it is in fashion and certainly a good trend.... After all, dark, starry skies are exceptionally beautiful and due to light pollution they have become scarce. On the island of La Palma, it is still possible to find dark skies easily and, in fact, it is considered one of the best places in the world to stargaze. It has also become a mecca for astrotourism, observe stars and night photography as the whole island has exceptional landscapes for this practice. If you are planning a trip to La Palma or anywhere else with dark skies and want to do nightscape photography, you need to be prepared. Here are the basics you need to know. Recommended equipment for nightscape photography: preparation. There is no room for improvisation when it comes to equipment for night photography. You must be well prepared, as night sessions usually take place in inaccessible or distant locations to avoid light pollution. This is the equipment I recommend for night photography. Camera. The type of camera will depend on your budget as it is usually an expensive equipment. However, you will need a bright (fast) lens and a camera that allows at least 3200 ISO and long exposure. In general terms make sure the camera has: manual settings, RAW format, bulb mode, if possible full frame, noise reduction option and Live View mode (for manual focus). A wide-angle lens: 24mm, 14mm are ideal. A telephoto lens (if you want to photograph the moon). An Intervalometer. Warm, comfortable clothing and footwear. Spare batteries. A sturdy tripod. Memory cards. Camera backpack with different compartments (ideally waterproof). Headlamp, preferably red or white/red. Mobile phone
Nightscape photography: preparation. In recent years it seems to be fashionable to be able and to know how to photograph the Milky Way. No wonder it is in fashion and certainly a good trend…. After
This fantastic video shows the Observatory of La Palma at night. The beauty of it is breathtaking. We hope you enjoyed it as we have! The Roque de Los Muchachos Astrophysical Observatory on La Palma island is a prestigious research centre with one of the most advanced professional telescope arrays in the world. Here is a video with spectacular images of the night sky over La Palma and of the sky at the Observatorio de La Palma at night (see note below*). In the video you can see the William Herschel Telescope, the Gran Telescopio de Canarias and other smaller telescopes. The Roque de Los Muchachos Astrophysical Observatory offers daytime visits to its facilities (Reservations: here) but night time visits are possible during working hours. However, do not dispair as La Palma is a Dark Sky Reserve (an Starlight Reserve) and stargazing is possible on the whole island. Here is a list and map of the astronomy viewpoints and astronomical sites of interest if you wish to stargaze. But if you need a little bit more: explanations, use of telescopes and a guided tour of the sky, you may consider joining one of our astronomy tours. More information about the Observatory on its official website: iac.es/orm Video by Vikas Chandler. Observatory Roque de Los Muchachos (La Palma) at night.
This fantastic video shows the Observatory of La Palma at night. The beauty of it is breathtaking. We hope you enjoyed it as we have! The Roque de Los Muchachos Astrophysical Observatory on La Palma
On 5th December a very special walk was inaugurated on the island of La Palma, the "Paseo de las Estrellas de la Ciencia", or Promenade of Stars of Science in La Palma. Located in the Avenida Marítima of the island's capital, it is the only promenade of its kind in the world. Given that the island has a remarkable history linked to astronomy and astrophysics, such as the existence of the Roque de los Muchachos Observatory or a proven track record in astro-tourism, this walk acknowledges the figure and work of famous scientists, mainly astronomers. It also highlights the undeniable link of the island with the study of the universe and the conservation of its sky as a heritage. No wonder, La Palma is a UNESCO Reserve. The Promenade of Stars of Science is an original idea of Anselmo Pestana, the President of the Island Council back in 2015, when the project started. The Cabildo Insular de la Palma, the Santa Cruz Town Hall and the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias are participating in the project. Unfortunately, the Prominade has taken 5 years to be carried out as first, the remodelling of the beach had to be completed. The event held this December 2020 has revealed the Stars that currently make up the "Paseo de la Ciencia". The four scientists awarded have personal and professional links with the island, hence, have been the first ones to be acknowledged. Stephen Hawking The first star is by Stephen Hawking, a renowned physicist and cosmologist linked to the Starmuss Festival held on La Palma and who was last on the island in 2016, shortly before his death. Hawking, who was the first to receive his star in 2016, is the author of many of the discoveries in modern astrophysics, such as the new
On 5th December a very special walk was inaugurated on the island of La Palma, the “Paseo de las Estrellas de la Ciencia“, or Promenade of Stars of Science in La Palma. Located in the
Here is the video of the virtual visit to the Gran Telescopio de Canarias at the Roque de Los Muchachos Observatory (La Palma, Canary Islands). This is the largest telescope on Earth situated at the mountain top of the island. The virtual visit has been recorded on the occasion of the AstroFest La Palma 2020 as part of the Astrotourism, Astronomy and Tourism Webinars organised by the Island Council of La Palma. If you cannot come to La Palma to see the telescope in sittu or, while the visits to the Observatory are suspended due to the covid19, you can make the visit virtually in the video (language: Spanish). The video explains what the telescope does, how it works and what the real post-covid visits will be like. More about Science at the Gran Telescopio de Canarias can be found on the official website: http://www.gtc.iac.es/ Visits to the Observatory at Roque de Los Muchachos will resume in 2021. Information & bookings here. More information about the Observatory on the official website of the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC). Video LaPalmaStars.com Team visiting The Gran Telescopio de Canarias Visit to the Gran Telescopio de Canarias, Roque de Los Muchachos Observatory in La Palma
Here is the video of the virtual visit to the Gran Telescopio de Canarias at the Roque de Los Muchachos Observatory (La Palma, Canary Islands). This is the largest telescope on Earth situated at the
Road Access to the Observatory in La Palma If you want to get the Observatory Roque de los Muchachos Observatory on the Canary Island of La Palma for a visit or just to enjoy the fantastic views, here we explain how to get to the Observatory. There is only an access road, the LP4 road, that goes from Santa Cruz de La Palma to the municipality of Garafía. This road is a mountain road as the Observatory is virtually on the highest point of the island, at an altitude of 2400m. From Santa Cruz on the LP4, there are 36 km of road of sinuous curves. However, the road is beautiful and offers spectacular views, but since it is a mountain road, you have to climb slowly and carefully. It usually takes between 1:15h to 1:30h to get up with a few minutes to rest and to take pictures. The access by Garafía has a shorter patch on the lp4 road, but first you have to get to Garafía, on the north of the island via the LP1 road. From Los Llanos de Aridane to the Observatory, on the west of the island, it takes about 1:30h without traffic and, from Santa Cruz de La Palma, by the LP1 to Garafía and then to the Observatory (12 kms on the LP4) it takes approximately 2 hours (on the east of the island). Also the road is very beautiful. We recommend to access the Observatory via Lp4 road from Santa Cruz and then leave the observatory via Lp4-Garafía-Lp1 to Los Llanos or to Barlovento. Once in the Observatory you may access the Roque de Los Muchachos summet (inside the National Park). This last stretch of road is open during the day. At night, the road is closed to the public. If interested
Road Access to the Observatory in La Palma If you want to get the Observatory Roque de los Muchachos Observatory on the Canary Island of La Palma for a visit or just to enjoy the fantastic
The Observatory of El Roque de Los Muchachos from the island of La Palma (altitude 2,420 m) is home to one of the most extensive fleets of telescopes to be found anywhere in the world. The reasons for being in La Palma is its latitute which allows the observation of the sky in both celestial hemispheres but more importantly, due to the excellent quality of its sky. This is: the darkness of the island a stable atmosphere the low air and light pollution the observatory being above the cloud level for more than 300 days on a given year the sky of La Palma is also protected by law from 1989 (Law of the sky), enforcing the control of light pollution by regulating street lighting and air communication routes. Visits to the Observatory can be booked here: Daytime Visits. New telescopes at Observatory Roque Muchachos The newest incorporation to the Observatory facilities in recent years are 23 Cherenkov telescopes which will be part of the International Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA). La Palma will be the northern site for this network. The largest Cherenkov telescopes will have 23 m in diameter. In 2016, the fundation has been laid for the 3rd Cherenkov telescope in La Palma. The Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA) is the next generation ground-based observatory for gamma-ray astronomy at very-high energies. With more than 100 telescopes located in the northern and southern hemispheres, CTA will be the world’s largest and most sensitive high-energy gamma-ray observatory. This network will be capable of observing the whole of the sky, inside and outside our galaxy as it will have 120 telescopes between both hemispheres. It will also cover a very wide range of energies ranges from several dozen Gev to 100TeV (1 TeV = 1012 eV) seeking to understand the
The Observatory of El Roque de Los Muchachos from the island of La Palma (altitude 2,420 m) is home to one of the most extensive fleets of telescopes to be found anywhere in the world.
What is light pollution? Light pollution is defined as the introduction of artificial light to an ecosystem (into naturally dark situations), degrading its natural state with the emission of light of different intensities, directions, spectral range and/or unnecessarily varying a light/dark schedule (ie. having lights on a empty office building or streets lights on after certain times). It is obvious that humans need and use artificial light during the night just...well...simply to live. But the use of artificial light should be in equilibrium with the nocturnal life, energy efficiency and health (avoiding the alteration of sleep patterns and the effect of artificial light at night on some cancers). We should try to minimize the impact of light pollution reducing the negative effects by designing better street lighting, scheduling of street lights, etc. Light pollution increases the background brightness of the sky by reflecting and diffusion artificial light into the gases and particles in the air. This results in a reduction of visibility of the stars and other celestial objects. The Sky Law in the Canary Islands (1989) controls gas emissions to the atmosphere on the island, as well as light pollution and air communications routes. The aim of the law is to have transparent and dark sky, with good (if not outstanding) quality for both amateur and professional astronomy. As a result, La Palma is a Dark Reserve (a Starlight Reserve) and thanks to this it has developed a Sustainable Tourism Industry based on the sky. There are many options for astrotourism in La Palma, we recommend you to enjoy the sky in one of our astronomy tours.
What is light pollution? Light pollution is defined as the introduction of artificial light to an ecosystem (into naturally dark situations), degrading its natural state with the emission of light of different intensities, directions, spectral
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