Hemisphere:  Northern  ·  Constellation: Perseus (Per)  ·  Contains:  46 ksi Per  ·  California Nebula  ·  California nebula  ·  IC2005  ·  IC2027  ·  Menkib  ·  NGC 1499  ·  NGC1499  ·  Sh2-220  ·  The star ξPer
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            Joey Troy
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            Joey Troy
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Technical card

Imaging telescopes or lenses: William Optics Redcat 51

Imaging cameras: ZWO ASI533MC Pro

Mounts: Sky-Watcher EQM 35 Pro

Guiding telescopes or lenses: ZWO 30mm f/4 Mini Guide Scope

Guiding cameras: ZWO ASI 120 Mini Mono

Software: Pixinsight

Filters: Optolong L-eXtreme 2"

Accessory: ZWO EAF Electronic Auto Focuser  ·  ZWO ASI Air Pro

Dates:Feb. 22, 2021

Frames:Optolong L-eXtreme 2": 19x600" (3h 10') (gain: 101.00) -10C

Integration: 3h 10'

Darks: ~10

Flats: ~10

Bias: ~10

Avg. Moon age: 9.85 days

Avg. Moon phase: 75.10%

Bortle Dark-Sky Scale: 3.00

Astrometry.net job: 4251959

RA center: 4h 1' 9"

DEC center: +36° 46' 35"

Pixel scale: 1.571 arcsec/pixel

Orientation: -171.329 degrees

Field radius: 1.858 degrees

Resolution: 6016x6016

Locations: Backyard, Belen, NM, United States

Data source: Backyard


The California Nebula (NGC 1499) is an emission nebula located in the constellation Perseus. It is so named because it appears to resemble the outline of the US State of California on long exposure photographs. It is almost 2.5° long on the sky and, because of its very low surface brightness, it is extremely difficult to observe visually. It can be observed with a Hα filter (isolates the Hα line at 656 nm) or Hβ filter (isolates the Hβ line at 486 nm) in a rich-field telescope under dark skies. It lies at a distance of about 1,000 light years from Earth. Its fluorescence is due to excitation of the Hβ line in the nebula by the nearby prodigiously energetic O7 star, Xi Persei (also known as Menkib, seen at center below it in the inset at right).

The California Nebula was discovered by E. E. Barnard in 1884.

By coincidence, the California Nebula transits in the zenith in central California as the latitude matches the declination of the object.


Sky plot

Sky plot




            Joey Troy