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About this object

Sh2-290 is an ancient planetary nebula. A planetary nebula is created when a low-mass star blows off its outer layers at the end of its life. Sh2-290 is one of the largest known planetary nebulae, with a diameter of about 23 light years. This image combines the light from Red, Green and Blue filters along with Hydrogen Alpha. The nebula glows bluish green in the center due to ionized oxygen. The outer layers being red represent the strongest hydrogen emission. The image above is a crop of a much larger field of view with the camera and scope combination. Click on the link above for the full frame image or click on the image itself for a higher resolution view. Sh2-290 is also known as Abell 31 and lies in the constellation Cancer. Being large Sh2-290 has a low surface brightness and is extremely dim. It's listed as magnitude 12. I also took a higher resolution image of this object in 2013 using my 10" reflector. The link to that image is here:
Image Details

  • Optics : Stellarvue SVQ100 Triplet Astrograph
  • Mount: Mountain Instruments MI-250
  • Camera: QSI 583, SBIG STL 11K
  • Filters: Astrodon 5nm Ha, Custom Scientific RGB filters (STL)
  • Exposure: Ha: 460 min R: 110min G: 160min B: 120min (Ha with QSI, RGB with STL)
  • Camera/Mount Control: Maxim DL 5.23, CCD Commander
  • Processing: PixInsight 1.8 RC7, Photoshop CS6
  • Location: Stark Bayou Observatory, Ocean Springs, MS
  • Date: 31 Jan - 3 Mar 14
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