Horsehead and Flame Nebulas



Scope:  Zenithstar 66 APO at f/4.3, Location: Blair Valley, Anza Borrego Desert, CA   29 November, 2008  Camera: Artemis285

Exposure: 8 x 10 min H-Alpha (1x1),  8  x 3 min Luminance (1x1) with  IR/UV Block, 8 x 2 min RGB Exposures (2x2).

Processing: Images were captured  with Artemis Capture (as FITs).  Aligned/stacked and dark subtracted in Astroart with Sigma Combine.   H-Alpha, Luminanace,  and Color channels were scaled and  color balanced in Astroart.  Channels were co-registered in Astroart.   Luminance construction consisted of the H-Alpha exposure blended with the Luminance exposure.  Curves and Levels applied in Photoshop to the Luminance construction to optimize object features.  A light background noise reduction was applied to the luminance construction in PixInsight LE (SBNR).   Final LRGB combine was done in Photoshop using Luminance Layering in LAB color Space.  A light sharpening was applied to nebula regions.   Final Image size is approximately 1092 x 1044.

All exposures in this image were guided; North is to the left in this image. Dark nebula B33 ( with the surrounding emission nebula IC 434 outlining it) is popularly known as the Horsehead Nebula. The object in the lower left is NGC 2024 - popularly known as the Flame nebula. A reflection nebula NGC 2023 is just between the Flame and the Horeshead. The bright star is Zeta Orionis also known as Alnitak - the Left most star in Orion's belt. A close up of the Horsehead area can be seen here. This image replaces an earlier image of the region located in my Archives here. The Horizontal FOV is 110'.

Image center is located approximately - Equatorial 2000: RA: 05h 41m 03s Dec: -0218'18" 


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