The Helix Nebula


The Helix Nebula, also known as NGC 7293, is a planetary nebula ring with a central star. This nova remnant is found in the constellation of Aquarius, and is the closest planetary nebula to us at 450 light years. It's angular size is 12.8 arc minutes, which puts it at about half the size of the full moon.

12" LX200 and ST-8E with AO7 and 6.3 focal reducer.  This is an RRGB image, however pure luminance data was taken.  The luminance data just didn't have the detail that the R frames had.  Unfortunately, all the RGB data was binned 3x3. I did run the R data through CCDSharp to generate the "L" data. The raw data was three frames each of 5 minutes for the RGBs.  Color was balanced to 1.15 : 1.00 : 2.05 plus extinction. Taken at the ARGO site on July 18, 2001.

Previous attempt taken at the 1998 Oregon Star Party on Aug 21:

This image was taken at f/3.3 with the 12" LX200 and 416XT CCD. It is the composite of two 2 minute exposures and one 1 minute exposure.