NGC 281 - The PacMan Nebula in Cassiopeia


Copyright 2007 Hap Griffin

NGC281 is a good example of a hydrogen rich region of star formation where the massive hydrogen cloud is illuminated internally by the loose open cluster IC 1590 which formed there relatively recently.  Several dark "Bok Globules" can be seen which are active stellar nurseries.  Star formation has been verified internal to these globules by way of infrared studies.  

NGC 281 lies at a distance of 9600 light years.


Date/Location:    November 3, 2007     Griffin/Hunter II Observatory    Bethune, SC
Instrument:    Canon 40D (modified IR filtering) Digital SLR through 10" Newtonian w/MPCC 
Focal Ratio:   f/ 4.7
Guiding:    SBIG ST-237 through Orion ED80
Conditions:    Clear
Weather:    40 F
Exposure: 252 minutes total (84 x 3 minutes @ ISO 800)
Filters:    Baader UV/IR block internal to camera
Processing:    Focused and captured in DSLRControl Pro.  RAW to TIFF conversion, flat frame calibration, Digital Development, resizing and JPEG conversion in ImagesPlus.  Final tweaking in Photoshop CS2.