The Pelican Nebula Ionization Front (IC 5070)

Pelican Nebula
All Images Copyright Steve Cannistra

Please click here or on image for a higher resolution view.

Magnitude:  8.0
Size: Over 80' for the entire Pelican Nebula.
Distance: ?
RA: 20h 50m 57s
Dec: 44 degrees 21' 52"

The Pelican Nebula is neighbor to the large and familiar North American Nebula (NCG 7000) in Cygnus.  This area is rich in excited hydrogen gas and offers many opportunities for Ha imaging.  The deep shadows in this nebula are caused by dust that obscures visible light emitted by ionized gas such as hydrogen, oxygen, and sulfur.  The area just below center is thought to contain an active stellar nursery, with the glowing topmost portion representing an ionization front.   Can you find the region of my photograph in this wide field view of the Pelican Nebula?

Photographic Details:

Date:  June 12, 2004
Takahashi Sky 90 at f4.5 with field flattener/focal reducer, on the G11 Losmandy Mount.
Autoguider:  SBIG STV with e-finder.
Camera:  SXV-H9
Astronomik Ha filter (13 nm bandpass).
Exposures:  Ha: 14 x 5' each (unbinned).  Total exposure 70 minutes.
Conditions:  June 12: Temperature 45 degrees F; average transparency; average seeing; calm.
Post-processing:  No dark, bias, or flat frames used.  Image alignment done in ImagesPlus.  Sigma combined using RC Sigma Reject Plug-in for MaximDL.  DDP performed in ImagesPlus (IP).  Subsequent levels and curves adjustments in Photoshop CS.

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