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This is the Pacman Nebula, a bright emission nebula located in the Perseus Spiral Arm of the Milky Way Galaxy in the constellation of Cassiopeia roughly 9,500 light years from Earth as photographed from my pool deck. This nebula sits just right next to the star Shedar, which forms one of the shoulders of Cassiopeia. The nebula sponsors a large, dark collection of gas and dust. This dark dust lane is clearly visible in the image and looks like the mouth of the Pacman. Also, clearly visible are globules of thick gas and dust called Bok Globules. Many times these globules will give birth to a star. Since this was a full moon night and the target is an emission nebula, I used narrow band filters for this image. I collected 3 hours of Ha data, 3 hours of Oiii data, and 3 hours of Sii data. I ended up using an HOO color palette, so I did not use the sulfur data.

Telescope: Celestron Nexstar 8SE SCT
Mount: iOptron CEM60
Camera: ZWO ASI 1600MM Pro
Autoguider: ZWO Off Axis Guider
Guide Camera: Starlight Xpress Lodestar X2
Focal Reducer/Field Flattener: Celestron .63x Reducer/Flattener

Anyhow, 9,500 years ago, somebody in Mesopotamia figured out how to grow wheat and barley to make beer (no bread yet), Jericho got a nice, big tower, Byblos was settled, the latest global warming period which gave African deserts new savannahs is slowing down, and The Pacman Nebula launched some photons towards Earth. Last night I caught some of them.

To see how I caught these ancient photons, follow the link below where I document my efforts to photograph The Pacman Nebula.


Photographing The Pacman Nebula


The Pacman Nebula

  • If you order a metal print of The Pacman Nebula, you can choose the size, surface, and finish of your picture.

    Canvas Prints come in only one finish (Flat/Matte) and one hanging option, so you will not be prompted for those options.

    Acrylic prints come with only one finish and one hanging option (French Cleat -- because of their heavier weight).

    You can order several different sizes of Metal, Canvas, and Acrylic Prints.

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