The Trifid Nebula (M20) in Sagittarius

Posted by ThomKat
on Wednesday, September 11, 2013

The Trifid Nebula (Messier object 20 and NGC 6514) is located in the constellation Sagittarius.  

According to Wikipedia, its name means 'divided into three lobes'.  The object is an unusual combination of an open cluster of stars; an emission nebula (the lower red portion) and a dark nebula (the apparent 'gaps' within the emission nebula that create the trifid appearance. 

Image captured on the evening of Sept 3, 2013 from Top of Mississippi Skies (T.O.M.S.) Observatory (lat 34.998°N, lon 88.276°W.) with a TMB-130SS Apochromatic Refractor,  mounted on a Celestron CGE-Pro mount;  AutoGuiding was with a Lodestar camera via PHD;  an SBIG ST-8300 OSC camera was used with an Astronomik CLS Filter;  focusing was done with a MicroTouch focuser controlled by Rigel Systems nSTEP.  Approximately 2 hrs of data was acquired using ImagesPlus Camera Control v5.5; raw images were calibrated, stacked and processed with IP v5.5 using Dark, Flat and DarkFlat Frames.  

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