The Blue Oyster is a planetary nebula, representing an aging star that has shed its outer layers, similar to the Ring Nebula, Dumbbell Nebula, and Helix
Nebula, but more distant at about 5000 light years. Unlike the other planetary nebula, the central star of the Blue Oyster is not a typical white dwarf, but has a
spectra more like a Wolf-Rayet Star. In photographs, the magnitude 14.5 central star suggests a pearl inside a blue oyster. At the Connecticut Star Party, I
viewed the Blue Oyster through Jim Cortina's 9 inch refractor, where it appeared as a vague oval glow against a velvet black sky, in the constellation
Camelopardalis. The Blue Oyster Nebula has been catalogued as NGC 1501 and more recently designated Hidden Treasure 22 by Stephen O'Meara.
This image combined 30 minutes of red, 15 minutes green and 15 minutes of blue exposures, all unbinned. An ST10XME camera was used through a Meade
12" LX200R and AP reducer optics mounted in an Optec rotator.
Music: Blue Oyster Cult, Don't Fear the Reaper