NGC3718 and NGC3729 with Hickson 56 Compact Group

NGC3718, NGC3729 with Hickson 56 Compact Group

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Ursa Major is full of exciting galaxies to see. This image contains a galaxy called NGC3718 (lower center of image) that was likely warped by the smaller barred spiral galaxy NGC3729 (top center of the image). Just to the left of NGC3718 is a chain of 5 distant galaxies commonly known as the Hickson Compact Group 56. Throughout the field are a great many smaller galaxies.

I find myself in awe as I look through the data as the camera brings it in from the telescope in the backyard, and am completely blown away by all the details that can be seen in these galaxies though their light shines from so far away and so long ago.


Holmberg 124 - NGC2805


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Holmberg 124 is a set of four interacting galaxies that can be found in Ursa Major. Centered in this image is NGC2805. The longest edge-on galaxy is NGC2820 and two smaller nearby galaxies are NGC2814 and IC2458.

NGC2805 is very active with lots of star-forming regions that can be seen particularly throughout the left arm. This activity seems to be recently encouraged by the interactions with the other galaxies in this group.

Faint “whisps” of gases and dust are also visible in the image. This “flux nebula” sits outside of our own Milky Way galaxy but close enough that they are illuminated by the light coming from our galaxy. Sprinkled across this view are also many smaller and more distant galaxy groups.


Hyades Open Cluster

Hyades Open Cluster in Taurus

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The Hyades Star Cluster has never really fascinated me much until I got into the hobby of deep sky imaging. As a bright set of stars in the night sky it’s commonly known as The Bull from ancient mythology. I didn’t know just how much star forming activity was going on in this region of space until my attention was directed to the Large Dark Molecular complex in taurus, and even then I hadn’t a clue how far it extended across the sky. This picture depicts some of the further reaching arms of that dark series of nebula. Inside it most prominantly is Aldebaran, the giant red-class star, brightest in all of Taurus. To the upper left is NGC1647 a far younger open cluster. On the upper edge in the middle is Hind’s Variable Nebula(NGC1555) and Struve’s Lost Nebula (NGC1554.) Probably my most favorite region of this image is the Sh2-239 reflection nebula sitting in extremely dense molecular cloud LDN1551.
* Sh2-239 in LDN1551

LBN777 and M45 in Taurus

The Happy Lil' Ghost Nebula (LBN777) to the Pleides (M45)

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After over a year attempting to shoot this region I’ve finally completed a revision of the dark molecular clouds that cover the taurus region near the Pleiades. This is but one panel of a larger 8-panel mosaic that I’ve planned and hope to complete before summer gets here. But this region in particular is one that I am a huge fan of. it is home to the very popular and bright star cluster M45 the Pleiades that sits behind the molecular cloud, but it’s radience shines through the dust. Through the dust structures one can find LBN777, a “ghost like” molecular cloud that to my eyes looks like it’s about to eat that bright yellow nearby star is more commonly known as the Vulture Nebula or Baby Eagle Nebula.

C/2019 Y4 Atlas near NGC2403

NGC2403 and C2019 Y4 Atlas Widefield in Camelopardalis.

Work in Progress

The project is a composite mosaic of the comet C/2019 Y4 Atlas as it passes through the Widefield region of Camelopardalis between the dates of 2020-04-02 and 2020-04-15. The background image was taken across 3 nights in December 2019 before the comet arrived into the field of view and consists of 6 hours of integration time. Then the same FOV was shot again on 2019-04-01 and 2020-04-09 (to process) with the Comet in frame. The comet image was stacked independently, and the two data sets were combined. The data was captured using a Rokinon 135mm f2.0 lens at f2.0, and an asi071mc camera cooled to -10C.

Additional data is being acquired for each night between 2019-04-03 and 2020-04-15 using my 1000mm f4.9 newt as I’ve been able to shoot through some partially cloudy nights with some success so far. That data has yet to be processed, but hope to add them to this image as time permits me to process.

The comet is moving from the mid-upper left corner of this field of view, and will be passing through the view of the dusty nebula (HSVMT 25) 2020-04-11 through 2020-04-13. I encourage anyone with dark skies and a fast scope to give it a shot before the moon comes up this weekend. It should make for a very interesting composition!

C2019 Y4 Atlas Early April

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NGC281 - Pacman Nebula

The Pacman Nebula is a bright emission nebula in the constellation Cassiopeia. This image was taken in narrowband SHO using the hubble pallet and consists of over 16 hours of exposure time.

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