Dates: Sept. 3, 2013
Integration: 125.0 hours
Avg. Moon age: 27.18 days
Avg. Moon phase: 6.13%
RA center: 119.464 degrees
DEC center: 53.427 degrees
Pixel scale: 0.835 arcsec/pixel
Orientation: -0.207 degrees
Field radius: 0.194 degrees
The longer the exposure, the better the image. That's a rule of thumb in astrophotography. That gave a group of danish amateur astronomers an idea: What if, instead of working on individual images, we tried to image the same object, and combined all the data?
The object chosen was Jones-Emberson 1, a large but faint planetary nebula. During the winter of 2012 and the early spring of 2013 more than 125 hours of data was gathered by seven people using six very different telescopes.
All the data was meticulously analyzed regarding noise and sharpness, using special algorithms, and combined into a single image.
The method isn't new, but normally fewer people attend, and our project shows that the method has great potential. Especially these days, when more and more skilled astrophotographers pop up, and the internet works very well for sharing and handling data.
125 hours of exposure is a lot to most single astrophotographer, but well within reach with joint projects. It's highly rewarding, and we give the method our highest endorsement.
Jones-Emberson 1 (PK 164+31.1) is a 14th magnitude planetary nebula in the constellation Lynx at a distance of 1600 light years. The 16.8-magnitude central star is a very blue white dwarf.
A planetary nebula is an emission nebula consisting of an expanding glowing shell of ionized gas ejected from a star late in its life.
The image was made from LRGB+Ha+OIII data. It's as close to natural colors to the human eye as possible.
The project was arranged via Astro-Forum.dk, by:
Michael Stauning, Michael Rask, Torben Taustrup, Flemming R. Ovesen, Morten la Cour, Paul Christiansen and Morten Balling.
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