Sep 172016
 
The constellation Cygnus (the Swan) has 5 bright stars that forms the shape of the bird in flight. The star at the intersection of the swan’s wings and body is named Sadr; the Arabic word for chest. The Bayer designation is Gamma Cygni (γ Cyg, γ Cygni).

The constellation is bright and easy to identify in the Northern sky. What is not so easy to see is the very large emission nebula located near γ Cyg.

Although γ Cyg lies near the center of the nebula, it is only a chance alignment. The star lies about 1,500 ly’s from Earth but the estimated distances to the nebula average about 3,000 ly’s.

By IAU and Sky & Telescope magazine (Roger Sinnott & Rick Fienberg) via Wikimedia Commons

By IAU and Sky & Telescope magazine (Roger Sinnott & Rick Fienberg)
via Wikimedia Commons

(IC 1318)[C:60x60s]

(IC 1318)[C:60x60s]

Since γ Cyg is so bright, I positioned it out of the FOV to prevent it overwhelming the image. Also, this image is only a small part of the nebula since my telescopic field of view is much too small to view the entire object. The dark area that crosses the image is not a lack of stars but is instead a very dense part of the nebula which blocks the background light from reaching us.

Chart generated with Cartes du Ciel

Chart generated with Cartes du Ciel

 Posted by at 12:52

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