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Contains:  NGC 4852, NGC 4349, IC 2948, lambda Cen nebula, IC 2944, NGC 3766, IC 2872, IC 2714, NGC 3603, NGC 3576, NGC 3572, NGC 3532, eta Car nebula, NGC 3372, Southern Pleiades, IC 2602, NGC 3324, NGC 3293, The star μ1Cru, The star ζCru, The star εCru, The star λCen, The star δCru, The star θCar, The star α2Cru, The star Gacrux (γCru), The star α1Cru, Mimosa (βCru), The star Becrux, The constellation Crux (Cru), Part of the constellation Carina (Car)

Image of the day 03/31/2018

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    Crux and Carina - a Panorama of Stars and Nebulae, 


            Gabriel R. Santos...
    Crux and Carina - a Panorama of Stars and Nebulae

    Crux and Carina - a Panorama of Stars and Nebulae

    Technical card

    Resolution: 5255x2100

    Dates:March 11, 2018

    Frames: 60x60" ISO800

    Integration: 1.0 hours

    Darks: ~16

    Flats: ~30

    Bias: ~30

    Avg. Moon age: 23.93 days

    Avg. Moon phase: 31.46%

    Bortle Dark-Sky Scale: 4.00

    Mean SQM: 20.70

    Mean FWHM: 3.10

    Temperature: 15.00 job: 1981989

    RA center: 180.616 degrees

    DEC center: -61.179 degrees

    Pixel scale: 15.668 arcsec/pixel

    Orientation: 356.491 degrees

    Field radius: 12.315 degrees


    Crux, the South pointer is a well known constellation in the Southern Hemisphere. Since ancient times, this asterism intrigued indigenous groups that once inhabited South America, Africa and Australia. A beautiful sight, the Southern Cross is especially visible during Fall months. In this deep sky mosaic, the constellation brightest stars are visible, along a very dense starfield on the Milky Way clouds nearby. Dark nebula constrast with them, especially the Coalsack nebula, right next to Crux. Part of the constellation Carina is visible to the right, especially the Great Carina Nebula - a naked-eye-identifiable gigantic emission nebula. Between Crux and Carina, a small part of Centaurus constellation - containing IC 2944.

    A jewel of the southern sky, the Carina Nebula, NGC 3372, spans over 300 light-years, being one of our galaxy's largest star-forming regions. To the left of Carina, the Running Chicken or Lambda Centauri Nebula is visible. Smaller nebulae can be seen also halfway between Eta Car. and Lambda Cen. including NGC 3576 and NGC 3603. Several clusters are also present: on the bottom right the Southern Pleiades; near Eta Car., C91; right in the Southern Cross, the prominent Jewel Box cluster is… well, a jewel to look at. [Paragraph partially adapted from APOD]

    This image was created in a very nice astro trip with friends Joao Mattei and George Kolossoski, in a rural area. The skies were pretty good, but the weather was far from ideal. In between clouds and cirrus, I was able to capture some nice(-ish) data. Despite its short integration (weather), I was positively pleased with the result of this mosaic. Completely manually framed and unguided, as I had issues with my EQASCOM software. Initially intended to be a 4-panel mosaic, I had to do a 5th to compensate for my misalignment. Final image is 12000x4800px (57MP). A real surprise to me, and definitely a keeper (in spite of its little integration).

    Constructive criticism, comments and suggestions are more than welcome in the comments section. Thank you for taking your time to look at this image.

    Taken from Semi-Rural Skies (Bortle 4-5; SQM ~20.7*calculated), from Itirapina, SP, Brazil.

    Date and Time: March 11, 2018, at 00:15 (start of capture)
    Camera: Canon EOS T5 (modded), at ISO 800
    Lens: Samyang 135mm f/2.0, operated at f/2.4
    Mount: Sky-Watcher HEQ5, tracking, unguided
    Exposure Detail: 5 panel mosaic, 12x60s each; total 60min

    **IOTD on March 31st 2018, "Easter's Saturday"!**



    Gabriel R. Santos...
    License: None (All rights reserved)

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    Crux and Carina - a Panorama of Stars and Nebulae, 


            Gabriel R. Santos...