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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Sharpless 132, Sh2-132, in visual spectrum

I published the original photo of  Sharpless 132 at November 11 but only in mapped colors. In this version, the narrowband channels are combined so, that the resulting image is as close as possible to a visual spectrum of human eye. Red is the dominating color since the ionized hydrogen, H-alpha, is the strongest emission line and it's emitting deep red light. Blue hues are coming from the emission of an ionized oxygen, O-III. 

A furious cosmic horse gets blinded by a divine blue light
Sharpless 132 (Sh2-132) in Cepheus

Image is in visual colors, if human eye could be able to see colors in extremely low light, most emission nebulae appears in deep red color due to dominance of an ionized hydrogen, H-alpha. Blue color is coming from the emission of an ionized oxygen, O-III.

An experimental starless version

When all the stars are removed, the actual nebula stands out much better.

A closeup composition


Sharpless 132 is a very faint emission nebula, it locates at the border of Cepheus and Lacerta. Distance is about 10.000 lightyears. My photo covers about one square degree of the sky (63x63"). The blue color in the image is from the emission of an ionized Oxygen (O-III). "The divine blue light" at horses face seems to be an Oxygen jet of some kind, or it's just a tens of light years long oddly shaped area of glowing gas. The shape can be seen in H-alpha channel too. (Ionized Hydrogen)

Technical details

Processing work flow
Image acquisition, MaxiDL v5.07.
Stacked and calibrated in CCDStack2.
Deconvolution with a CCDStack2 Positive Constraint, 33 iterations, added at 50% weight
Color combine in PS CS3
Levels and curves in PS CS3.

Imaging optics
Celestron Edge HD 1100 @ f7 with 0,7 focal reducer for Edge HD 1100 telescope

Cameras and filters
Imaging camera Apogee Alta U16 and Apogee seven slot filter wheel
Guider camera, Lodestar x2
Astrodon filter, 5nm H-alpha
Astrodon filter, 3nm O-III

Exposure times
H-alpha, 9 x 1200s = 3h

O-III, 3 x 1200s = 1h
S-II, 3x1200s = 1h

A single un cropped, calibrated and stretched 20 min. H-alpha frame


Cathy said...

These are absolutely breath-taking, when you remove the stars it's quite a sight, I'm very impressed. I shared your blog on my Facebook page, hope it gets you more deserved attention! I've not been blogging for years, but might get back into it. glad to see you're still here. Again, incredible pictures.

J-P Metsavainio said...

Thanks Cathy! The blog works as an imaging diary for me. Here is my Facebook page, you are welcome as a friend: