My name is Gianluca Valentini. I live in the country near a small seaside town in Italy, Rimini. On July 25th 2008 my first born son Leonardo came to life and I'm happy he is a healthy and cute little boy! I also have 4 beautiful dogs that I saved from the streets.


I've always been fascinated with astronomy, even though I never owned a telescope. It was only a few years ago that I decided it was time to buy one, having more free time from work, and so I did. I began with a small 70mm refractor on a simple manually operated equatorial mount and I was hooked in no time! Things progressed then rather quickly as regards instruments (as you will see from the section dedicated to my present "toolbox").

My observatory
My daddy and me
My scope

Soon I discovered that I was more keen on imaging than observing (a classic dychotomy in the world of amateur astronomy) and went along that path. I was lucky enough to begin at a turning point in this hobby: the introduction of webcams that made imaging some of the bodies of the solar system much easier than before.


The appearance of great freewares such as Registax (by Cor Berrevoets) and Iris (by Christian Buil) was a true revolution in the world of amateur astronomy. This programs allowed one to align and then stack the individual frames of a movie sequence captured with a slightly modified webcam and thus obtain images of a quality that was reserved only to professionals before.
After a couple of years spent learning the "tricks of the trade" and experimenting in different areas of amateur astro-imaging, another turn of events was awaiting me: a presentation of solar filters held in a close by town.

I remember it was not a very good day for solar observation, as the sky was full of clouds and the sun would appear only for short intervals. But I decided to attend anyhow, mostly because I promised I would have. Little I knew that I was going to see one of the most fascinating things I've seen since I placed my eyes at the eyepiece of a telescope: They had prepared a group of hydrogen-alpha filters and telescopes and when I saw my first prominence I knew that that was the kind of phenomena I would have liked to film and image from then on.

Later on I was able to buy one of these filters (a used one, being, unfortunately, extremely expensive "toys") and I began my activity as an amateur solar imager. I still like to image other phenomena of the universe (the moon, planets and also deep sky objects, such as nebulae and galaxies) but my main interest is still for the sun.







































 Gianluca Valentini - - Rimini - Italy






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