The Orion Nebula was designated as M42 in the Messier Catalog. However, Charles Messier gave a separate designation of M43 in his catalog to a bright spot near the core of the Orion Nebula. Scroll down to the bottom image to see where M43 is located in the Orion Nebula M42. M43 covers an area of about 20 arc-seconds by 20 arc-seconds.
The Orion Nebula is located about 1600 to 1900 light years away, and has a diameter of about 30 light years. Although this nebula looks spectacular in almost any telescope, the actual density of the gas in the nebula is less dense than a millionth of the density of gas in a laboratory vacuum here on Earth.
The images on this page were all taken with different telescopes. The top image is a false color CCD image taken with a hydrogen-alpha filter using an SBIG ST-8E CCD on a Takahashi FCT-150 telescope from my backyard in Scottsdale, Arizona.
The middle image is an LRGB color composite CCD image taken with a Takahashi FS-78 telescope and an SBIG ST-8E from my backyard in Scottsdale, Arizona.
The bottom image shows the location of M43 relative to the Orion Nebula M42. This is a photograph taken with a Takahashi Epsilon 250 telescope from a dark sky site in Iola, Texas.
M43 (NGC 1982).
RA:05h 35m 31s Dec:-05d 16' 03"
Images by Sid Leach
Complete list of images.
Description of equipment used to acquire images.
Feedback and comments should go to Sid