In his most recent The Night Sky blog, Darrell Heath talked about NGC 2392 aka The Lion Nebula so I decided to try to image it with the RRT. It’s small (48 arcseconds) so I figured that system which is a 12″ SCT at prime focus which I think is a 3000mm focal length would be a good fit. The RRT has a monochrome camera so I used its filters to create a color composite. The alignment wasn’t perfect, the stars show some chromatic error, but the image shows the major features of this planetary nebula.
This is the Gamma Cassiopeia Nebula, aka IC 63 (top) and IC 59 (right of center). The dinner plate of a star is second magnitude Navi, the central peak in the W of the constellation of Cassiopeia. Notice this nebula looks like a caricature of a Guy Fawkes mask about to eat the star. Who says I don’t have an imagination?
Anyway, I haven’t had a picture to share in four weeks and decided to inflict this one on you even though it’s not too good. In early December I managed to get four five minute images before clouds happened. I decided to try it again Friday night but clouds interfered again after the fifth frame. So this is just 45 minutes of data.
This nebula is actually near Kavi and is slowly being dissipated by it. The top one (IC 63) is also called “the Ghost Nebula” maybe because in another orientation you could imagine someone with a sheet over their head. As far as I can tell, the silly nickname for IC 59 is IC 59.
This is the Helix Nebula in the constellation of Aquarius. It never gets too high in our sky but now in late December it is especially low and sets early in the evening. I shot this over two nights under an 80+% illuminated Moon (Friday & Saturday) because by the time the Moon is gone, it will be that much lower in the sky. Anyway, 11″ SCT with Hyperstar shooting at f/1.9 and L-eNhance dual narrowband filter. 31 three minute subs.
From Wikipedia: The Helix Nebula (also known as NGC 7293 or Caldwell 63) is a planetary nebula (PN) located in the constellation Aquarius. Discovered by Karl Ludwig Harding, probably before 1824, this object is one of the closest to the Earth of all the bright planetary nebulae. The distance, measured by the Gaia mission, is 655±13 light-years. It is similar in appearance to the Cat’s Eye Nebula and the Ring Nebula, whose size, age, and physical characteristics are similar to the Dumbbell Nebula, varying only in its relative proximity and the appearance from the equatorial viewing angle. The Helix Nebula has sometimes been referred to as the “Eye of God” in pop culture, as well as the “Eye of Sauron”.
From the Far Side: This is the awning of the cage of Asparagus.