Astrophotography with small telescopes

Farm Tivoli Country Namibia Other things Home

Maybe every amateur astronomer dreams from observing under a clear and dark sky.


Unfortunately these places are rare. On the northern hemisphere this can be in Arizona (USA), some places in the Sierra Nevada (Spain), Southern France or in the European Alps. In 1995 my friend Gerd and me talked about making a trip to Namibia. We decided to plan our journey to Namibia for 1998.

We started planing in 1996, made a reservation for August 1998 on Farm Tivioli, located about 180 kilometers southeast from Windhoek capital of Namibia.

Namibia is located in the southern part of Africa, on the western coast to the Atlantic Ocean. The cold Benguela stream along the coast garanties a try clima with the Namib desert.

During the winter the cold wind transports cold and clear air from the antarctic to Southern Africa. After 2 1/2 years of planing we packed all our telescopes, cameras, film developing equipment into a large box and brought it to Frankfurt Airport, to the air freight where it was made ready for the flight to Africa.

On August 13th 1998 we flew overnight nonstop from Frankfurt to Windhoek and arrived in the morning of the 14th.

On the first day we checked our telescopes, built the mounts together, collimated the telescopes, and set it up for the first night.
HALE-BOPP This was my last image taken from Namibia. It shows comet Hale-Bopp 1995 O1 on August 29th 1998. The picture was made with my 5.5 " Schmidt-Camera on TP2415 hyp.

We stayed for 16 days on farm Tivoli taking images as well as observing the southern celestial objects. We brought 140 kilograms of astronomical equipment with us, including equipment for film and slide develloping, two Great Polaris mounts, two ST-4 cameras for automatical guiding, one 4" f/10 refractor, a 3 1/2" refractor, a 6" f/5 newtonian with guidescope, several 35mm SLR cameras, a 6x6 camera and my 5.5" Celestron Schmidtcamera.

Gerd and me It shows Gerd and me.

Telescopes Our telescopes shielded against the sun.