Horsehead Nebula, IC 434 Composite(Copy)


The Horsehead Nebula is located 1500 light years away in the Orion constellation. It is one of the most iconic features in our Milky Way and is widely photographed. It is a reflection nebula made up of obscuring gas in the shape of a horse’s head back illuminated by the red light emission from Hydrogen gas. The bright star to its left is the left most of the 3 Orion belt stars Alnitak. The nebula just below is the Flame Nebula, NGC 2024. This image features the outermost portions of the combined nebula which is rarely imaged. The overall image was done by the Takahashi FS152, f6 at 900mm using narrowband Hydrogen Ha and Sulfur Sii filters with Ha in red and Sii in blue. The Flame nebula and the mid to lower nebula was done with the FS152,f8 at 1200mm also using Ha and Sii filters. The Horsehead itself and the nebula around it was done with the CDK17 at 2975mm in true color LRGB.  The image scale was set by the CDK17 image and the FS152 images were scaled up to match. The overall processing of the final images was done in Photoshop CC20.


Optics: Takahashi FS 152, f6 & f8 & CDK17
Mount: Software Bisque Paramount MX+(FS152), & ME(CDK17)
Camera: FLI PL 16803, SBIG STXL 11002
Filters: Astrodon 3nm Ha, Oiii, Siii, L,R,G,B
Dates/Times: January 2012, 2014,2019
Location: Adler Earth & Sky Observatory, Jackson Hole WY, Martin Pugh Observatory,Rio Hurtado Chile
Exposure Details: Composite image with the FS152, f6,Ha 30 x 10min, Sii 30 x 10 min, FS152, f8 Ha=46x10min, Sii=37x5min, and CDK 17, LRGB=15x20min, total 200 images, 40 hours

Acquisition: MaxIm DL SkyX,
Processing:  MaxIm DL, Photoshop CC20