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Monday, March 9, 2015

The heart of the Heart nebula, melotte 15

A new photo from the night of  20. February and 6, March, Melotte 15 in the IC 1805, the Heart nebula.

Melotte 15
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Image is in mapped colors from an emission of  the ionized elements. Golden areas 
are from emission of sulfur and hydrogen, bluish hues are from ionized oxygen.

A closeup
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A closer closeup
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And even closer


The open cluster centered in this image is known as Melotte 15 . Melotte 15 is embedded within a central portion of the much larger glowing nebula identified as IC 1805. 

The interesting structure in the image is a giant area of  ionized hydrogen, it's caused to glow by the intense ultraviolet radiation from the massive stars of the Melotte 15 star cluster.
Dust and gas clouds are twisted by the pressure of the intense radiation, the solar wind.
This formation is estimated to be 7,500 light years away from Earth, North is up.

An experimental starless image 
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This experimental starless photo shows the object in light of an ionized hydrogen alone.

Image in visual colors

Natural color composition from the emission of ionized elements, R=80%Hydrogen+20%Sulfur, G=100%Oxygen and B=85%Oxygen+15%Hydrogen to compensate otherwise missing H-beta emission. This composition is very close to a visual spectrum.

Orientation in an older wide field image of the area

The Heart and Soul nebulae, IC 1848 and 1805, in constellation Cassiopeia. Area of interest is marked as a white rectangle.

Technical details

Processing workflow
Image acquisition, MaxiDL v5.07.
Stacked and calibrated in CCDStack2.
Deconvolution with a CCDStack2 Positive Constraint, 27 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

Exposure times
H-alpha, 12 x 1200s = 4h
O-III and S-II channels are from an older wide field photo of this area.

A single un cropped, calibrated and stretched 20 min. H-alpha frame as it comes from the camera

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