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Dates & Location

October 15th - November 8th 2009 using the SMAP site at Weed, New Mexico. Elevation 7269 ft. Lat 32.8°N Long 195.5W  

Catalogue identification

Elephant's Trunk Nebula,
Van DeBurgh 142
Part of the young star cluster complex IC1396

Equipment Used

Officina Stellare RC400 at 3304mm focal length
Paramount ME German equatorial Mount
Camera SBIG ST-11000M with FW-8L filter wheel.
TheSky V6 telescope control
CCDSoft V 5.0 camera control.

 

Where it is in space

The Elephant Trunk Nebula is a spectacular star forming region within our Milky Way galaxy. It is about 2,400 light years distant in the constellation of Cepheus, forming part of the larger IC 1396 emission nebula complex.
In this image, North is up, East is left.
Acquisition

Remote session using RADMIN PC control from Ravenshead, UK.
LRGB exposures:- 180:120:140:120 mins total using 10 min sub-exposures at -20°C and -25°C. All images binned 1x1.

  What it is

It consists of ionized gas, dust, and reflection nebula. The name Elephant Trunk derives from the long dark dust lane. The 'eye' at the eastern end of the 'trunk' has an especially intriguing and somewhat eerie appearance. this may be due to a newly formed star having blown off the surrounding dust, revealing a luminous circle of reflection nebula with patches of both emission and reflection nebulae.

Processing Methods

Image acquisition and telescope control with CCDSoft V5  
  Data reduction and Luminence De-convolution with CCDStack. RGB colour channels prepared in CCDStack.  
 

Master RGB image and Master Lum Image finished with Photoshop CS2.Final LRGB image using PhotoShop CS2