Hemisphere:  Northern  ·  Contains:  38 omi Per  ·  Atik  ·  B3  ·  B4  ·  B5  ·  IC 348  ·  IC348  ·  The star οPer
Getting plate-solving status, please wait...
Omicron Persei Cloud (Gingrich 1) B3/B4/B5/Ced20/Cr41/IC348/LBN758/VdB19 (c), 


            Ram Samudrala
Powered byPixInsight

Omicron Persei Cloud (Gingrich 1) B3/B4/B5/Ced20/Cr41/IC348/LBN758/VdB19 (c)

Imaging telescopes or lenses: Takahashi FC-100DF

Imaging cameras: QHYCCD QHY247C

Mounts: Software Bisque Paramount MyT

Focal reducers: Takahashi Reducer FC-35

Software: SharpCap Pro  ·  PixInsight  ·  Software Bisque TheSkyX Professional Suite

Filters: Baader Planetarium UV/IR Cut

Dates:Aug. 26, 2019Aug. 31, 2019

Frames:Baader Planetarium UV/IR Cut: 102x300" (gain: 1.00) -15C bin 1x1

Integration: 8.5 hours

Darks: ~30

Flats: ~20

Avg. Moon age: 13.16 days

Avg. Moon phase: 11.35%

Bortle Dark-Sky Scale: 3.00

Mean FWHM: 3.00

Temperature: 15.00

Astrometry.net job: 2897167

RA center: 3h 43' 1"

DEC center: +32° 4' 23"

Pixel scale: 1.689 arcsec/pixel

Orientation: -8.764 degrees

Field radius: 1.686 degrees

Resolution: 5994x3969

Locations: Ram Samudrala, Youngstown, NY, United States

Data source: Backyard


The Omicron Perseus Cloud is an open cluster that is associated with some nebulosity, including dark oily patches of dust that are illuminated by a tight cluster of stars. IC348 is the designation given to 2-million-year-old star forming region (seen in the middle) with roughly 400 members that is ~1000 light years away from us.

I'm fascinated by dark nebulae/regions of space and I've been wanting to image one that had more of a three dimensional oily quality to it, unlike my previous ones with the Cocoon, Iris, and Pleiades. From my observations, dark regions/nebulae can either look like they are embedded/embossed within the sky background (see Cocoon image: https://www.astrobin.com/414567/) or sometimes they can appear as swirls or clouds of dust around reflection nebulae (see Iris and Pleiades images: https://www.astrobin.com/413899/ and https://www.astrobin.com/421142/) and sometimes they can appear like an patch of oil. This nebula has all these types of dark regions (Barnard 3, 4, and 5) in the context of other reflection/emission nebulae, but the oily patch in centre-right (B3) is what attracted me to this target.

As the name suggests, this nebula/cluster is part of the constellation Perseus. Specifically the triple star system illuminating the dust is Omicron Persei, a binary pair of which are known officially as Atik (the top brightest blue one) and Ab. This nebula is part of the giant Perseus molecular cloud that is largely invisible (unlike the Orion molecular cloud) except for two star forming regions, this one and NGC1333 (also known as Embryo nebula). While not associated with this region, there are over a dozen small galaxies in the background some of which you can make out if you look closely.

The final images represent an integration of data collected over two nights. For the very first time, I had to use flat frames to remove some dust tracks/motes from somewhere in my imaging train for reasons that are not entirely clear. Normally I don't need them, but it could be due to the nature of target, since I had to bring up the background to highlight the dark regions or it could be due to my new settings. Either way, after some trial and error I made it work.

Aside from working on doing the calibration properly, there is just a nominal amount of processing in the first image. The second image is an alternate version with a bit more aggressive processing to highlight the dark nebulae (looks good from far away but bad when zoomed in) and the third one is in between. I always enjoy hearing from what people think appears the best.



Ram Samudrala
License: Attribution Creative Commons


  • Omicron Persei Cloud (Gingrich 1) B3/B4/B5/Ced20/Cr41/IC348/LBN758/VdB19 (c), 


            Ram Samudrala
  • Final
    Omicron Persei Cloud (Gingrich 1) B3/B4/B5/Ced20/Cr41/IC348/LBN758/VdB19 (c), 


            Ram Samudrala
  • Omicron Persei Cloud (Gingrich 1) B3/B4/B5/Ced20/Cr41/IC348/LBN758/VdB19 (c), 


            Ram Samudrala


Description: Most aggressive processing. Looks best from afar.


Description: Intermediate processing.

Sky plot

Sky plot


Omicron Persei Cloud (Gingrich 1) B3/B4/B5/Ced20/Cr41/IC348/LBN758/VdB19 (c), 


            Ram Samudrala

In these public groups

Suburban Astrophotography