Gerd Neumann Aurora Flatfield Panels for <220mm Diameters - 12V
The Aurora Flatfield Panels by Gerd Neumann Jr.: Enjoy the perfect flat and say hello to a new era in Electro-luminescence flat field science with the revolutionary Aurora Light panel or as we affectionately call them - an Aurora. The new Aurora Flatfield Panel is an advancement in the well known technology of EF flat field foils. Due to the huge demand from all over the world this new product line was especially designed to match the needs of astrophotography.
The Aurora Flatfield Panel is a new light source technology for taking flat field images for use in calibration of digital images. In brief, it is a thin Electro luminescence foil which emits an even white light after an external voltage is applied to it.
The Aurora Flatfield Panels are mounted in a very rigid frame consisting of virtually unbreakable plastic with an extra protection around the edge so your Aurora is very well protected during transport and travel. The opaque front plate gives you a more uniform brightness than the EL material alone. For very fast optical systems you will likely need to reduce the brightness by placing some sheets of paper in front of the EL sheet and the frame of the Aurora will keep them secure.
The light from the Aurora Flatfield Panels looks slightly blue/white. Most panels from other suppliers seem to be white to the human eye but the light is in fact made of discrete emission lines. Due to this the flat field EL panels from most other suppliers are not suitable for narrowband emission line filters. Here at Astronomik we have tested the products of all EL sheet manufacturers worldwide and selected these particular EL foils for our Aurora Flatfield Panels because they are the best for astronomical applications. The spectrum of the Aurora Flatfield Panels is not made of some emission lines (like most panels are) instead the EL material used in the Aurora Flatfield Panel has a very broad, continuous emission across the whole spectrum. This fact is what makes our Aurora Flatfield Panels great for narrowband emission line filters.
The three spectra below illustrate the difference between our continuous spectrum EL panels and typical EL panels with light generated with discrete emission lines present.
You can see the very broad emission of the new Aurora Flatfield Panel which is very well suited for the work with DSLR and cooled CCD cameras, working with Broadband or RGB filter and for work with narrow band emission line filters as well.
Benefits of the Aurora Flatfield Panels
- A perfectly even illuminated surface!
- A broad, continuous spectrum which may be used with emission line filters!
- Lightweight and easy to handle
- Inverter for 12V and 110/240V available - suited to both stationary and mobile use.
The brightness of the Aurora Flatfield Panel is matched to work best with typical light intensity levels produced after passing through filters. If you are working with light from the whole spectrum such as when using no filter or only a UV+IR blocked Luminance filter, you will likely have to the reduce the brightness of the panel. The brightness can be controlled electronically to some extent by reducing the input voltage of the inverter (12V inverter only). If the panel is still too bright for your setup, as may be the case with very fast instruments and/or very sensitive cameras, you should place one or more sheets of paper into the frame between the layer of white plexiglass and the EL material. The brightness is very even across the whole surface and it works well for the most critical imaging applications, even photometry or spectroscopy.
The Auroras are round in shape, which is perfect for telescope tubes and the diameters are matched to fit the popular sizes of amateur telescopes. The Aurora Flatfield Panels are shipped as complete ready-to-use sets with a special matching inverter as a normal Wall-Transformer will not work. The Panel is illuminated by the external high voltage produced by the inverter. This high voltage however is produced at very low amperage, so there is no danger to you.
IMPORTANT: Please use the Aurora Flatfield Panels with the supplied matching inverter only. Connecting a panel to an inverter of the wrong size reduces the lifetime of the unit.
OPT Product Number: GN-10-302-220
|Manufacturer||Gerd Neumann Jr.|
|Warranty||Not Supplied By Manufacturer|
Even flat field
The item works well and in my view should include the ND filter. The foil as is was to bright to take flats that were long enough to prevent shutter shadow on my Atik 383 ccd used on my SV80S refractor. So I purchased the ND filter. Once installed in the foil the RGB flats were excellent but the NB filters Ha, OIII and SII requiered extremely long exposures, 480 seconds for a SII flat field. I had to remove the filter and use white sheets of paper in front of the foil and no filter for Ha, OIII and SII flats. RGB flats were achieved by keeping the ND filter in front of the flat field foil and white sheets of paper. Perhaps Gerd Neumann could design a sleeve to place in front of the foil, this would expedite the adding and removing of the filter. It took some additional engineering on my part but I was able to produce good flats for all my ccd filters. The foil does generate a superb flat field that is even across the entire field. If you have a fast system be aware of some issues using this product but the resulting flats are excellent.