Planetary Nebula in Camelopardalis

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NGC1501: NGC1501 is a small (.9 arcminutes in diameter), dim (magnitude 13 according to most sources; mag 11.5 according to TheSky v6) planetary nebula, the type of nebula which it is generally thought our Sun will produce as nuclear fusion slows and then dies in its core, and it expels its outer layers of gas. It is estimated to be about 4000 light years from us, which would make it about one light year across.


Technical Information:

LRGB: 320:50:50:50 (Luminance layer consists of sixteen 20-minute images, unbinned; R, G and B consist of five 10-minute images, all unbinned).

Equipment: 16" RCOS at about f/9, and an SBIG ST-11000M with internal filter wheel (Astrodon filter set), on a Bisque Paramount ME German Equatorial Mount.

Image Acquisition/Camera Control: CCDSoft v5, sometimes controlled with CCDAutoPilot3, and working in concert with TheSky v6.

Processing: All images calibrated (darks and dawn flats) in CCDSoft. All channels debloomed and combined in CCDStack. Luminance layer deconvolved in CCDStack. L, R, G and B layers registered in CCDStack, and combined in Photoshop CS2. Curves and levels performed in Photoshop, as well as a gaussian blur of the RGB layer.

Location: Data acquired remotely from the Tejas Observatory, located on the grounds of New Mexico Skies, near Mayhill, NM (elevation 7300 feet).

Date: Almost all images taken during the night of 12/21/2006; a couple of the luminance images taken during the night of 11/26/2006.

Pixel scale: .505 arcseconds per pixel.

CCD Chip temperature: -25C

Seeing: Generally very good for luminance layer; deteriorating rapidly for the color channels (worst in red).

Transparency: Very good

Moon Phase: No moon during imaging

Copyright 2006 Mark de Regt

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