Location of photoPerry Hall, Maryland USA
Date/Time of photoSept and Oct 2016 over 390 minutes of accumulated integration time
EquipmentC11 SCT, On Axis Guider (ONAG), ATIK 460EX main imaging camera, Lodestar X2 guide camera, Losmandy G11 mount, 3nm H-a & O-III narrowband filters, HSM Stepper Motor for Starlight Feather Touch fine Micro-Focuser, Digital Boss II Focuser Control System, F/6.3 Reducer, Orion Nautilus motorized filter wheel
DescriptionMy image shows the Helix Nebula NGC 7293, the closest planetary nebula to Earth at a distance of 650 light years. Small stands of molecular hydrogen known as "cometary knots" can be seen radiating inward from the circular boundary between the blue and reddish orange areas of the nebula. The explanation of how they originated is unknown. I captured this image on Sept 25, 26, Oct 4 and Oct 6 2016 over a total integration time of 6 hours and 30 minutes through 3nm Hydrogen Alpha and Oxygen-III narrowband filters located on my C11 Schmidt Cassegrain telescope.