Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Light Pollution

Panasonic LX1, 60 sec., f2.8, ISO 80, 6.3mm (Click to enlarge)

"The Heaven's Declare the glory of God", (at least they would without humankind's best attempts to blot out the night sky with light pollution)!

I've been itching to try out the "starry sky mode" on our new compact camera, so last night I set it on a tripod at the side of the Rectory facing south towards Great Island. You can make out the stars but the scene is dominated by the bright lights from what I think must be the floodlights from the Cobh Ramblers ground, roughly 4 miles away as the crow flies.

On a camera such as this, with a fingernail sized sensor, it really struggles to capture detail without making the photo very blotchy and full of digital 'noise'. At a small picture size like this it looks okay but at full size it's pretty ghastly. Of course in the days of film you just pointed your tripod mounted camera at the night sky put it on 'bulb' and went away and had a cup of tea for half an hour or so. Hmm, I guess that this is one example when film is actually better - maybe I'll give that a try soon.

2 comments:

Ian Poulton said...

Daniel,

If you think you have light pollution yous should try attempting astronomy as a hobby on the edge of Dublin! The Government keeps on about the Power of One and it's broad daylight outside our house all night

Daniel Owen said...

Ian, thanks for your comment - Yes I suppose things would be much much worse in Dublin - how much energy we waste...