Greetings & Constellations!

Spending time on a nice clear, dark night with a precision telescope is a favorite, though recent, pasttime. The amazement of staring up into the face of infinity is exhilarating!

I’m ChipAstro, your host, to many of the wonders of creation placed carefully and purposefully above our heads.

I’m reminded of the words of Job,
“He made all the stars—the Bear and Orion, the Pleiades and the constellations of the southern sky. He does great things too marvelous to understand. He performs countless miracles.”

[Job 9:9-10]

latest [+] images

Distance to Earth: 1,344 light years
Radius: 12 light years

Orion (M42) & Running Man Nebulae

[Feb 24, 2024]

The Orion Nebula is a diffuse nebula situated in the Milky Way, being south of Orion’s Belt in the constellation of Orion, and is known as the middle “star” in the “sword” of Orion. It is one of the brightest nebulae and is visible to the naked eye in the night sky with apparent magnitude 4.0. [wikipedia]

Distance to Earth: 1,800 light years
Constellation: Cygnus

IC5070 Pelican Nebula

[Apr 20, 2024]

The Pelican Nebula (also known as IC 5070) is an H II region associated with the North America Nebula in the constellation Cygnus. The gaseous contortions of this emission nebula bear a resemblance to a pelican, giving rise to its name. [wikipedia]

Distance to Earth: 1,500 light years
Constellation: Auriga

Three Nebula: Spider, Fly and Flaming Star Nebula

[Mar 9, 2024]

IC 405 (also known as the Flaming Star Nebula, SH 2-229, or Caldwell 31) is an emission and reflection nebula in the constellation Auriga north of the celestial equator. [wikipedia]

NGC 1931, the Fly Nebula (top) is an emission and reflection nebula, and has been referred to as a miniature version of the Orion Nebula, as it shares some of the same characteristics. There is a smaller version of M42’s “Trapezium” in the hot, young star cluster in the centre of the emission nebula. It is about 3 arcmins in size and is 4000 – 7000 light years from Earth.

IC 417, the Spider Nebula (center) is an emission nebula and star forming region. The nebula contains a young open cluster (Stock 8), and is energized by its hot, massive blue stars which are still embedded in glowing hydrogen gas. The bluish clouds of gas at the top of the image are locations of new star formation. [astro.nightsky.at]

Distance to Earth: 23.5 million light-years away and 76,900 light-years in diameter
Constellation: Canes Venatici

M51 The Whirlpool Galaxy

[Mar 15, 2024]

The Whirlpool Galaxy, also known as Messier 51a (M51a) or NGC 5194, is an interacting grand-design spiral galaxy with a Seyfert 2 active galactic nucleus. It lies in the constellation Canes Venatici, and was the first galaxy to be classified as a spiral galaxy. [wikipedia]

Shot details: Eighteen 60-second exposures stacked

12P/Pons-Brooks Comet

[Mar 9, 2024]

12P/Pons–Brooks is a periodic comet with an orbital period of 71 years. The comet nucleus is estimated to be around 30 km in diameter. It will reach “perihelion” when it is closest to the earth at a distance of approximately 232 million km. [wikipedia]

Distance to Earth: 22.2 kilolight years
Constellation: Hercules

M13 Great Globular Cluster in Hercules

[Mar 16, 2024]

Messier 13 or M13 (also designated NGC 6205 and sometimes called the Great Globular Cluster in Hercules, the Hercules Globular Cluster, or the Great Hercules Cluster), is a globular cluster of several hundred thousand stars in the constellation of Hercules. Messier 13 may be visible to the naked eye with averted vision on dark nights. [wikipedia]

Distance to Earth: 5,200 light years
Radius: 65 light years

C49 Rosette Nebula

[Jan 31, 2024]

The Rosette Nebula (also known as Caldwell 49) is an H II region located near one end of a giant molecular cloud in the Monoceros region of the Milky Way Galaxy. [wikipedia]

Distance to Earth: 1,375 light years
Constellation: Orion

IC434 Horsehead and Flame Nebulae

[Feb 5, 2024]

The Horsehead Nebula (also known as Barnard 33 or B33) is a small dark nebula in the constellation Orion. The nebula is located just to the south of Alnitak, the easternmost star of Orion’s Belt, and is part of the much larger Orion molecular cloud complex. The Flame Nebula, designated as NGC 2024 and Sh2-277, is an emission nebula in the constellation Orion in the lower left of the photo. [wikipedia]

Distance to Earth: 3,000 light years
Constellation: Taurus

Simeis 147 Spaghetti Nebula

[Mar 2, 2024]

Simeis 147, also known as the Spaghetti Nebula, SNR G180.0-01.7 or Sharpless 2-240, is a supernova remnant (SNR) in the Milky Way, straddling the border between the constellations Auriga and Taurus. [wikipedia]

Radius: 2,300 light years
Constellation: Monoceros

NGC 2264 Christmas Tree Cluster

[Feb 22, 2024]

NGC 2264 is the location where the Cone Nebula, the Stellar Snowflake Cluster and the Christmas Tree Cluster have formed in this emission nebula located in the constellation Monoceros. [wikipedia]

Distance to Earth: 1,000 light years
Constellation: Perseus

NGC 1499 California Nebula

[Feb 24, 2024]

The California Nebula (NGC 1499/Sh2-220) is an emission nebula located in the constellation Perseus. Its name comes from its resemblance to the outline of the US State of California in long exposure photographs. [wikipedia]

Radius: 6,400 light years
Constellation: Orion

NGC 2174 Monkey Head Nebula

[Feb 11, 2024]

NGC 2174 (also known as Monkey Head Nebula) is an H II emission nebula located in the constellation Orion and is associated with the open star cluster NGC 2175

Distance to Earth: 7,500 light years
Constellation: Cassiopeia

SH 2-199 Soul Nebula

[Jan 29, 2024]

Soul Nebula is an emission nebula located in Cassiopeia. Several small open clusters are embedded in the nebula. [wikipedia]

Distance to Earth: 7,500 light years
Constellation: Cassiopeia

IC 1805 Heart Nebula

[Jan 9, 2024]

The Heart Nebula (also known as the Running dog nebula, IC 1805, Sharpless 2-190) is an emission nebula, 7500 light years away from Earth and located in the Perseus Arm of the Galaxy in the constellation Cassiopeia.

Distance to Earth: 5,000 light years
Constellation: Gemini

IC 443 Jellyfish Nebula

[Jan 28, 2024]

IC 443 (also known as the Jellyfish Nebula and Sharpless 248 (Sh2-248)) is a galactic supernova remnant (SNR) in the constellation Gemini. [wikipedia]

Distance to Earth: 2,030 light years
Constellation: Ursa Major

M97 & M108 - The Owl Nebula and Surfboard Galaxy

[Mar 16, 2024]

The Owl Nebula (also known as M97) is a planetary nebula approximately 2,030 light years away in the constellation Ursa Major.

Messier 108 also known as NGC 3556, nicknamed the Surfboard Galaxy) is a barred spiral galaxy about 28 million light-years away from Earth in the northern constellation Ursa Major. It was discovered by Pierre Méchain in 1781 or 1782. From the Earth, this galaxy is seen almost edge-on. [wikipedia]

Distance to Earth: 2,900 light years
Constellation: Orion

Sh2-261 Lower's Nebula

[Feb 14, 2024]

The HII region Sh 2-261 is often called Lower’s nebula because it appears on a photographic plate taken by the father-and-son team of Harold and Charles Lower in 1939. [wikipedia]

Radius: 100 light years
Constellation: Auriga

IC 410 The Tadpole Nebula

[Jan 28, 2024]

The Tadpole Nebula (IC 410) is an H II region located approximately 12,400 light-years away in the northern constellation Auriga. It is associated with the young open cluster NGC 1893. [constellation guide]

Distance to Earth: 1,344 light years
Radius: 12 light years

M45 The Pleiades (Seven Sisters)

[Dec 30, 2023]

The Pleiades, also known as the Seven Sisters, Messier 45, and other names by different cultures, is an asterism and an open star cluster containing middle-aged, hot B-type stars in the north-west of the constellation Taurus. [wikipedia]

Distance to Earth: 1,344 light years
Radius: 12 light years

Orion (M42) & Running Man Nebulae

[Dec 20, 2023]

The Orion Nebula is a diffuse nebula situated in the Milky Way, being south of Orion’s Belt in the constellation of Orion, and is known as the middle “star” in the “sword” of Orion. It is one of the brightest nebulae and is visible to the naked eye in the night sky with apparent magnitude 4.0. [wikipedia]

Distance to Earth: 2.537 million light years
Radius: 110,000 light years
Comment:This was my first astrophotograph ever!

Andromeda Galaxy(M31)

[Dec 17, 2023]

The Andromeda Galaxy is a barred spiral galaxy and is the nearest major galaxy to the Milky Way. It was originally named the Andromeda Nebula and is cataloged as Messier 31, M31, and NGC 224. [wikipedia]

Distance to Earth: 12 million light years
Constellation: Ursa Major

M81 Bode's Galaxy & M82 Cigar Galaxy

[Feb 5, 2024]

Messier 81 (also known as NGC 3031 or Bode’s Galaxy) is a grand design spiral galaxy about 12 million light-years away in the constellation Ursa Major. Messier 82 (also known as NGC 3034, Cigar Galaxy or M82) is a starburst galaxy approximately 12 million light-years away in the constellation Ursa Major. [wikipedia]

Distance to Earth: 21 million light years
Constellation: Ursa Major

M101 Pinwheel Galaxy

[Feb 17, 2024]

The Pinwheel Galaxy (also known as Messier 101, M101 or NGC 5457) is a face-on spiral galaxy 21 million light-years from Earth in the constellation Ursa Major.