Running Man Nebula and Orion Nebula M42
The Great Orion Nebula is a favorite of anyone with a telescope.  It is easily found within the sword of the constellation Orion.   Even through binoculars, this object can be seen
as a billowing cloud.  The view only gets better through a telescope.  Much of the detail within the Orion Nebula, seen in the right half of the image above, can be seen with a small
telescope.  Visually, only the color is missing.  The red color is best recorded photographically, and represents the emision spectra of hydrogen gas excited by the neighboring
young hot stars.  A much larger cloud of denser matter surrounds this area.  The bright center of the Orion Nebula is a spectacular stellar nursery, giving rise to many young suns.

The bluer object, to the left of the Orion nebula in the image above and to the left in the images below, has been called the "
Running Man Nebula."  Dark intersecting lanes of
dust create the apparition of a man's arms spread wide as he runs towards our left.  The blue color represents a reflection nebula, with clouds of dust merely reflecting the light of
nearby stars.

The image above was taken with a 2 frame mosaic using a QSI-583wsg camera through an Astro-physics 305 mm Ricardi-Honders Astrograph at f 3.8.  Each frame combined
about 30 minutes of red and green and 45 minutes of blue exposures.  Total imaging time was close to 4 hours.

The image on the lower left was also taken at the Hidden Lake Observatory, 4 years earlier.  I used an ST2000XM camera through a Takahashi Sky90 refractor and Takahashi
reducer.  I combined 25 red, 20 green, and 22 blue 2-minute exposures, for a total imaging time of 2 hours 14 minutes. The image below right was taken 8 years from my light
polluted backyard.  It is the combination of 20 red, 20 green, and 30 blue 30-second images, for a total imaging time of 35 minutes. 4 inch AP refractor, ST10XME CCD camera.
Music - U2 - New Years Day


All is quiet on new years day,
A world in white gets underway,
And I want to be with you,
Be with you night and day.
Nothing changes on new years day
click on image for full resolution view
click on image for full size, mouse over image to show diffraction spikes on stars