Zodiacal Light and Ecliptic

Light pollution and less than clear skies in much of the UK generally make it difficult to pick out the zodiacal light. Although not as spectacular as the view from the tropics it can be seen when conditions are right. Knowing where to look is important and Venus helped to mark the lower end of the ecliptic on this occasion.

Click here to show ecliptic

A single unprocessed image shows the interference from light pollution. Sadly there is no such thing as a truly dark sky in most of the south of England.

Even with the unaided eye a wide angle view is essential for picking out such a broad diffuse glow. It can also be difficult to distinguish zodiacal light from the normal effects of vignetting in a single image, where the centre of the frame is better illuminated than the corners.

Canon EOS 20D   13th March 2007
Wiltshire, England

Other Glows Topics