Out of this WOLRD! Amateur astronomer captures stellar space photo’s!
DEFYING the light pollution of our capital city these stunning images of outer space have been taken by an amateur astronomer from his back garden in West London.
Rivalling images taken by multimillion dollar spacecraft, the spectacular shots show incredible close-ups of the moon including the Apollo 15 landing site, Jupiter and Mercury.
Other pictures show the International Space Station passing over London, a comet whizzing by and the moon rising high into the night sky.
The awesome array of photos were taken by IT solutions architect and amateur astronomer Roger Hutchinson (49) from London.
The married father-of-two captured the images from the modest observatory he has constructed with his own hands in the back garden of his home.
“My overriding message would be that people should look up more,” said Roger.
“The night sky is a wonderful unifying thing and puts into perspective our place in the universe. The whole human race gazes at the same moon.
“Certainly if people thought about this a little more the petty concerns and divisions we suffer from here on planet Earth may become a little less important.
“I love being under the stars and trying to capture what I see, or teasing out details that aren’t visible to the eye.
“Each imaging session is different as conditions differ from night to night, when you do get a perfect night under the stars it makes up for all the cloudy ones.”
A report by Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) found that nineteen of the twenty brightest night skies, due to light pollution, were in London districts while Manchester made up the list.
As a region, London is at least nine times brighter than any other except the North West, according to CPRE.
Although light pollution is a serious problem for star-gazers Roger said it should not act as a deterrent.
“Light pollution is a serious and increasing problem across the UK and the world,” he said.
“A huge number of the Earth’s population live in areas where it is impossible to see the arc of the Milky Way which is a great shame.
“London is of course at the extreme end of the light pollution spectrum being one of the world’s major cities however it is still possible to shoot astrophotos even under these challenging conditions.
“No target is totally out of bounds but some lend themselves better to being imaged under light polluted skies.
“Certainly, living in a city should not be considered a barrier to astronomy.”
Roger, has held his passion for astronomy since the final years of the Apollo space programme when he was a child.
“This had a lasting impression on me,” he said.
“One of my earliest memories is walking slowly around the back garden in an astronaut costume pretending to walk on the Moon.
“When I got a little older I built an eight inch Dobsonian telescope with the help of my father and still remember the first time I turned it towards Saturn and have been hooked ever since.”