Finding Polaris or the North Star is easy in the Northern Hemisphere. In the Southern Hemisphere, finding Sigma Octantis is very difficult. The star lies in the constellation of Octans and has a magnitude of 5.5 making it barely visible even on a clear night.  One can use the Southern Cross to make an attempt at locating its position but it will never be really accurate.  I did my best and set up my cameras to do a time-lapse.  This was the night Germany played Brazil in the World Cup.

My tripod and camera must have aroused the curiosity of the night security guard at Eagle Island Camp.  He kindly moved my rig to a more secure position on the tiles of the swimming pool.  This was after 395 images had been captured with about 105 to go.  Sequence disrupted but in my opinion the stack is interesting.  Sigma Octantis is in the top left corner of the frame – INVISIBLE.

Stars in Africa are incredibly bright as indicated by the EXIF data.  These images were captured using the Panasonic Lumix GH4 and the 12 to 35 mm Lumix Vario lens.  Exposure triad: f/2.8, 13 sec, ISO 200 – no noise reduction required.

In hindsight, I should have added an ND filter and increased the exposure to 25 seconds or closed down the aperture to f/4.  This would have extended the individual trails.

Your comments would be appreciated.

Eagle Island Star Trail
Eagle Island, Botswana –  Star Trail
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