The Trifid Nebula
Again this shot was taken with my QHY8 camera and guided for a total of 9 exposures of 5mins using an Astronomiks CLS filter. This is the first time I have used the CLS filter and am happy with the results. I still wish to get more data of this subject and keep adding to this image. Adding more and more shots will improve the quality and depth in the image. Conditions were not great so focus was difficult t achieve but this shows what can be taken on an LX200 10″ scope in a well lit suburban inviroment. No darks were taken just a few bias shots and flats. Bias shots are short images taken with the cover over the scope (like black or dark shots but fast exposures). Then a few flats are taken… Flats are shots taken (short exposures) with a light box over the telescope.
The Trifid Nebula (catalogued as Messier 20 or M20 and as NGC 6514) is an H II region located in Sagittarius. Its name means ‘divided into three lobes’. The object is an unusual combination of an open cluster of stars; an emission nebula (the lower, red portion), a reflection nebula (the upper, blue portion) and a dark nebula (the apparent ‘gaps’ within the emission nebula that cause the trifid appearance; these are also designated Barnard 85). Viewed through a small telescope, the Trifid Nebula is a bright and peculiar object, and is thus a perennial favorite of amateur astronomers.
The nebula’s distance is rather uncertain, with values between 2,200 light years (Mallas/Kreimer; Glyn Jones has 2,300) and about 7,600 light years. Still a long way away in anyones book but a really great winter target from the Southern skies. I really love this object and love the colours.. This Nebula is also great with a wider field shot showing more of the blue region just showing at the top of my image.