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Sh2-86 / NGC6820 / NGC6823

Sharpless 2-86 - An Emission Nebula in Vulpecula Sharpless 2-86 - An Emission Nebula in Vulpecula ©2015 Frederick Steiling
Target Information
Main Target Designations Sh2-86, NGC6820
Companion Objects NGC6823
RA Center 19h 43m 02.509s
DEC Center +23° 18' 14.51"
Rotation -0.344°
Additional Images
Published image Full resolution
Annotated image (NGC/PGC) Pop up preview
Full resolution
Annotated image (Stars) Pop up preview
Full resolution
Exposures
HαRGB 270’/100'/100'/100'
Hα subframes 1800" @ 1x1
R/G/B subframes 600" @ 2x2
Total Integration 9hrs 30min
Date(s) of acquisition 14Aug2015, 16Aug2015
Locations New Florence, MO
Equipment
Imager SBIG STF-8300M
Telescope/Lens Orion 8" f/3.9 Astrograph
Mount Celestron CGEM
Guiding Apparatus OAG-8300
Guiding Camera QHY5L-II
Filter Wheel FW5-8300
Wide Filters Astronomik LRGB
Narrow Filters Astronomik 12nm Hα
Accessories
Coma Corrector Baader MPCC Mark III
Collimator Orion LaserMate
Focusing Bahtinov mask
Software
Acquisition Sequence Generator Pro
Guiding PHD2
Processing PixInsight 1.8

In my last image of the Iris Nebula which displays its beauty via the reflection of a nearby star, this image of NGC6820 highlights the characteristic of an emission nebula, whose clouds are ionized and actually emit (rather than reflect) light in the visible spectrum.  Also cataloged in the Sharpless catalog as Sh2-86, the clouds of this nebula benefit from the high energy received from the nearby blue star cluster NGC6823.  These powerful photons penetrate the clouds' hydrogen molecules which, when returning to their base state, emit a specific wavelength of light in the red spectrum (656.28 nm).  This characteristic is maximized in this image through a narrowband (12nm) Hα filter centered at this wavelength.

In my first composition ever containing a Hydrogen-alpha component, I was able to make a huge leap in exposure time with the narrowband filter with 30' subframes.  The addition of an RGB component (10' subexposures) presents color throughout the stars of the frame, and leaves us with a cloudy treat that sits about 6,000 light years from us.  Inclusion of the Hα component was an extremely enjoyable process and one on which I plan to continue to focus and improve.

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