Christmas Tree and Cone Nebula in a Colorful Cloud of Glowing Gas


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Featured as NASA´s APOD – Astronomy Picture of the Day the image shows a reddish skyscape scene from Monoceros constellation. A wide cloud complex of glowing hydrogen gas located at about 2,700 light-years away from us, and mixed with interstellar clouds of dark dust. Near the center image, an active star forming region features the Cone Nebula NGC2264 (LDN 1613), a dark absorption nebula with 7 light-years in length. Distinctively shaped by energetic stellar winds produced by hot and young stars recently created inside the nebula, over the course of time, only the densest portions from the original molecular cloud will remain intact and may could give form to new stars and planets. Close to it, the blue-white supergiant star S Monocerotis is the brightest star shinning in the field of a blue reflection nebulae, powered by it´s ultraviolet light and the other hot young blue stars in the Christmas Tree Cluster. These group of colorful stars in NGC2264 are forming a triangular tree shape, which the cume is the star HD 47887 that lies near the Cone head. The Fox Fur Nebula is an emission nebula which seems to partially cross in front of the blue reflection nebula at the central region of the picture. Captured from Cumeada Observatory, official headquarter of Dark Sky® Alqueva Reserve, Reguengos de Monsaraz, Portugal.

PT: Destacada como NASA´s APOD – Astronomy Picture of the Day a imagem revela um cenário celeste de céu profundo a partir da constelação de Monoceros, o Unicórnio, um complexo de nuvens de gás hidrogénio avermelhado e brilhante, localizado a cerca de 2.700 anos-luz de distância de nós e misturado com nuvens interestelares de poeira escura. Perto do centro da imagem, uma região activa na formação de estrelas apresenta a Nebulosa do Cone NGC2264 (LDN 1613), uma nebulosa de absorção escura com 7 anos-luz de comprimento. Distintamente moldado por ventos estelares energéticos produzidos por estrelas quentes e jovens criadas recentemente dentro da nebulosa, ao longo do tempo, apenas as porções mais densas da nuvem molecular original permanecerão intactas e poderão vir a dar forma a novas estrelas e planetas. Perto dela, a estrela super-gigante branca-azulada S Monocerotis, é a estrela mais brilhante que se destaca no campo de uma nebulosa de reflexão azul, alimentada por sua luz ultravioleta e pela luz reflectida das estrelas jovens azuis e quentes do aglomerado da Árvore de Natal. Este grupo de estrelas coloridas do aglomerado NGC2264 apresenta assim uma disposição em forma de árvore triangular, cujo cume é a estrela HD 47887 situada perto da cabeça do Cone. A Nebulosa de Pele de Raposa é uma nebulosa de emissão que parece sobrepôr-se parcialmente em frente à nebulosa de reflexão azul, na região central da imagem. Captado a partir do Observatório da Cumeada, Sede Oficial do Dark Sky@ Alqueva, Reguengos de Monsaraz, Portugal.


Technical details | Detalhes Técnicos

Taka FSQ-106ED + Extender-Q 1.6x – EM200 auto-guided | Nikon D810a | ISO2500 – Exp. 240 seconds x 20 lights | ISO4000 – Exp. 731 seconds x 8 Ha 7nm | Total integration of 20 Lights + 8 Ha : 177 minutes. Processing on PixInsight 1.8.8-4 and Photoshop CC 2020. Cumeada Observatory from Dark Sky® Alqueva Reserve, Reguengos de Monsaraz.

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