Cosmic Impressions by Glenn Schaeffer

The Helix Nebula (NGC 7293)

Helix Nebula


The Helix Nebula (also known as NGC 7293) is a planetary nebula about 650 light-years away in the constellation Aquarius.  It is one of the closest planetary nebulae to Earth.  The Helix has often been referred to as the Eye of God and also as the "Eye of Sauron" due to its resemblance to said object in the "Lord of the Rings" movie.  This was shot during the fall trip to Fort McKavett Texas where dark skies are the norm.

Photographic Details:

Date & Location: October 20th  2006, Fort Mckavett, Texas.
Scope: Obsession 20” f/5 on a Tom Osypowski Dual Axis Equatorial Platform, Orion 100mm f/6 Guidescope.
Autoguider: SC1 Mod Celestron Neximage Cam,
Shoestring GPINT-PT guide port interface adapter, and Guidemaster software
Camera: Canon 20D DSLR (non-modded), homemade serial control shutter release cable and DSLR shutter from Stark Labs.
Filters: None
Conditions: Temp 54F, Humidity 40%, Winds 5-10, Transparency 8/10, Seeing 7/10.
Exposures: 20 x 60sec @ 3200 ISO Sub Frames, 21 x 60sec Darks.
Post-processing: 3504x2336 Raw files converted to Lossless 16-bit FITS, calibrated, aligned, and combined with ImagePlus software. Slight wavelet filtering with Registax 3.Final processing PhotoImpact Pro.


Images Copyright 1999-2010 by Glenn Schaeffer