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Image of the day 12/08/2014

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    Barnard 3  : Chaos in the sky, 


            Antonio F. Sánchez
    Barnard 3  : Chaos in the sky

    Technical card

    Resolution: 2309x1700

    Dates:Oct. 25, 2014Oct. 28, 2014Oct. 30, 2014Nov. 19, 2014

    Optec 50mm B: 37x600" -25C bin 1x1
    Optec 50mm G: 36x600" -25C bin 1x1
    Optec 50mm L: 80x600" -25C bin 1x1
    Optec 50mm R: 37x600" -25C bin 1x1

    Integration: 31.7 hours

    Avg. Moon age: 9.86 days

    Avg. Moon phase: 19.41%

    Bortle Dark-Sky Scale: 2.00 job: 427528

    RA center: 55.068 degrees

    DEC center: 32.037 degrees

    Pixel scale: 1.430 arcsec/pixel

    Orientation: -179.587 degrees

    Field radius: 0.569 degrees


    This is Barnard 3, a dusty, gassy region of the galaxy about a thousand light years away where young stars are lighting up their neighborhood.Complex molecules similar to soot, called polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons or PAHs. .

    So what’s going on here? Near the center is a F2 white-yellow star ( HD 278942) which is brighter and hotter than our Sun, and is flooding the surrounding material with ultraviolet light and a fast wind of subatomic particles (like the Sun’s solar wind, but a whole lot stronger and with a much, much farther reach). This has carved out a gigantic cavity in that stuff, creating a bubble about 25 light years in diameter — that’s huge: 250,000,000,000,000 kilometers across, more than 10,000 times the size of our solar system!

    The UV from the star is making the gas glow.In optical light (this object is a mess , with gas emitting light, reflecting light, and dust absorbing it. When gas is lit up this way around a star, it’s called a Strömgren sphere, after the astronomer Bengt Strömgren who did the first theoretical work on them.
    An infrared image of the area can be seen here:

    Credit: (Phil Plait, Discover Magazine, December 2011)



    Antonio F. Sánchez

    Sky plot

    Sky plot


    Barnard 3  : Chaos in the sky, 


            Antonio F. Sánchez