Skies By Africa

Images of the Heavens By Eric Africa

NGC 1491

NGC 1491
In Greek mythology, Perseus is the demi-god who slew Medusa and saved Andromeda from the Sea Monster.  In modern parlance, he is the demi-god hero of the "Clash of the Titans" movies. In astronomy, Perseus is a constellation in the northern skies west of the "W" (or "M", depending on the season) - shaped Cassiopeia.

Perseus is host to many deep-sky treasures: the Double Cluster, the California Nebula, and the subject of this page, NGC 1491.

NGC 1491 (also listed in the Sharpless Catalog as SH2-206) is an emission nebula, which means it is a cloud of ionized hydrogen gas and a stellar nursery. The nebula is primarily illuminated by the bright star near the center of this image. This star is not only the primary source of the ultraviolet radiation that is lighting up the nebula, it is also generating an energetic stellar wind that is eroding away the gas of the nebula. At the brightest region of this image near that star, a subtle "bubble" might be seen near that star.
Constellation: Perseus
When Visible: December - April
Distance: 10,700 light-years
Date: December 2013
Location: Rancho Hidalgo, New Mexico
Exposure Details:
H-alpha: 35 x 30 Minutes Binned 1x1 (used for Luminance)
R: 12 x 10 minutes Binned 1x1
G: 12 x 10 minutes Binned 1x1
B: 12 x 10 minutes Binned 1x1

Total Exposure Time of 23 - 1/2 hours
Equipment Used: 12.5" PlaneWave CDK on a Software Bisque Paramount ME mount. SBIG STL-6303 camera with 5-position filter wheel, AO-L Adaptive Optics Unit, Pyxis Rotator and Astrodon LRGB filters
Acquisition Software : MaximDL, TheSky6, CCDAutopilot
Processing Software: MaximDL, Adobe Photoshop CS5, Carboni Tools, IrFanView