The Running Man Nebula (NGC 1977)

Posted by ayiomamitis
on Friday, November 27, 2009

by Anthony Ayiomamitis


NGC 1977 is one of the most-recognized highlights in the constellation of Orion. Although classified as an open cluster embedded within nebulosity, this area just north of the Orion Nebula is generally recognized as the Running Man Nebula owing to the emission nebulosity at the center which is in the formation of a running humanoid. The cluster is approximately 1,500 light-years away and spans approximately 20' in diameter. It is dominated by a number of bright stars ranging from mag 4 to mag 6 and whose light reflects off gas in the immediate vicinity and thus leading to reflection nebulosity. At the same time, ionization of hydrogen gas leads areas of emission nebulosity and as indicated by the red regions in the image above. Two other reflection nebulae sitting on the shoulders of the humanoid figure have classifications within the NGC catalog, namely NGC 1975 to the east and NGC 1973 to the west. Also, an area of protostar formation to the south is known as Herbig-Haro 45. Technical Details: Date: Nov 26-27, 2009 @ 23:25 - 02:55 UT+2 Location: Athens, Greece (38.2997° N, 23.7430° E) Equipment: AP 160 f/7.5 StarFire EDF, AP 1200GTO GEM, SBIG ST-2000XM, SBIG CFW10, Baader 7nm H-α, SBIG LRGB + IR-block Integrations: HaLRGB @ 80:20:30:30:30 (1-/6-/20-min subs), Binning 1x1, Image Scale 1.17" per pixel, -25.0° C Further Details:

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