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Dates & Location

28th October 2019 - 2nd January 2020 from the ICAstro site, Oria, Spain. Elevation 1022 m
Lat 38°:45.4 N, Long 00°:02.1W
 

Catalogue identification

IC 2118, Witches Head Nebula
In this image, North is up

Equipment Used

Tak FSQ106N at 530 mm focal length, F5.0.
Paramount ME German equatorial Mount.
Camera - Moravian Instruments G3-16200 with 7 position FW and OAG.
TheSkyX Pro telescope control.
SGP used for camera, PHD Guide and Focus control.

Starlight Instruments Boss Focuser with FSQ rear cell replacement.
Lodestar guide camera.


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Where it is in space

This field is approx 178 x 110 arcminutes - ie ~ 6 x 4 Moon diameters.
IC 2118 is in the constellation of Eridanus about 900 light years from Earth but visually it
lies approx 2.75° WNW of Rigel, which is the SW bright blue star of the constellation Orion.

 

Acquisition

Remote session using Splashtop control from Ravenshead, UK
Exposures: L: 28  x 20 min + R:G:B 14 x 10 min each.
Ha 10 x 30 min.

All sub-exposures
-30°C. All images binned 1x1.
Automated remote sessions using Sequence Generator Pro (SGP)

 

  What it is

IC 2118 is an extremely faint reflection nebula believed to be an ancient supernova remnant or gas cloud illuminated by nearby supergiant star Rigel.
The nature of the dust particles, reflecting blue light better than red, is a factor in giving the Witch Head its blue color. Radio observations show substantial carbon monoxide emission throughout parts of IC 2118, an indicator of the presence of molecular clouds and star formation in the nebula. In fact candidates for pre-main sequence stars and some classic T-Tauri stars have been found deep within the nebula.

Processing Methods

All data reduction with CCDStack. Lum, RGB masters and RGB colour combine prepared in CCDStack
Master (R + Ha) created in CCDStack.
Master (Lum+RGB) colour created in CCDStack.
DDP stretching, colour balancing and finishing
in PS CS6.
DBE in PI for balancing up background.