This is a remarkable planetary ring nebula known as the Little Ghost Nebula. Discovered by Herschel in 1784, the planetary nebula forms an almost perfectly circular ring. However, the magnitude 16 central star is actually off center. The nebula shines at magnitude 13 and has a size of 38.0 arc-seconds. Planetary nebulae are formed by an expanding shell of gas thrown off explosively by a dying star. The gasses forming the nebula fluoresce as a result of ultraviolet radiation from the central star.
This is an RGB composite CCD image taken with an SBIG ST-8XE CCD at prime focus on a Takahashi Mewlon 210 telescope operating at f11.5 on an NJP Temma mount. The images were taken from my back yard in Scottsdale, Arizona.
RA: 17h 29m 30.3s Dec: -23d 46' 13"
June 4, 2005
Image by Sid Leach
Complete list of images.
Description of equipment used to acquire images.
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