Dumbell Nebula, Messier 27

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The Dunbell Nebula, Messier 27 The Dumbell nebula was first seen by astronomer Charles Messier in the 18’th century while searching for comets. Messier diligently kept a list of the things he encountered that were definitely not comets. This is number 27 on his now famous list of 110 deep space objects. In fact, 21st century astronomers would identify it as a planetary nebula  although it is not a planet. Messier 27 (M27) is an excellent example of a gaseous emission nebula created as a sun like star runs out of nuclear fuel in its core and is called a planetary nebula because of its roundish shape. The nebula forms as the star’s outer layers are expelled into space, with a visible glow generated by atoms excited by the dying star’s intense but invisible ultra violet light. Known by the popular name of the Dumbell Nebula, the beautifully symmetric interstellar gas cloud is over 2.5 light-years across and about 1,200 light-years away in the constellation Vulpecula. The overall image spans about a forth of the size of the moon in the sky. The image was taken with my 20” Planewave telescope and the Finger Lakes Instrument’s Pl16803 camera on a Software Bisque MEII mount and is an assembly of 80 images taken over 10 hours in September 2018.

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Optics: 20″ Planewave CDK20
Mount: Software Bisque Paramount ME
Camera: FLI PL16803
Filters: FLI LRGB
Dates/Times: Sept 2018
Location: Earth and Sky Observatory, Jackson Hole WY
Exposure Details: L(1:1)=20x5min, R,G,B(2:2)=20x5min, total 80 images, 10 hr
Acquisition: MaxImDl, SkyX, Guiding Astrodon MOAG, SBIG STi
Processing: MaximDl, Photoshop CC