Daniel Leclerc recorded this fine image of Mars two days after the red planet had its closest approach to Earth in seven years. Taken April 16 at 11:10 p.m., EDT, with Sky-Watcher 8-inch Newtonian from his backyard in Pointe-aux-Trembles, Quebec, Leclerc’s image clearly shows the Martian north polar cap, the peach-hued deserts, the dark region known as Acidalium below the cap, and the dark region Aurorea Sinus at bottom. He used a DBK 21AU618.AS CCD camera at 60 frames per second, 4× Barlow lens, UV/IR-cut filter. AutoStakkert2! image-processing software was used on 1,500 frames followed by wavelet filtering with Iris.
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