Russell Croman Astrophotography  



The Rho Ophiucus Nebula Complex

About This Photograph

This is the fabulous Rho Ophiucus nebula complex, one of the most colorful areas of the night sky. Rho Ophiucus itself is the brightest of the three stars in the center of the blue reflection nebula on the lower right. The very bright star in the upper left is Antares, easily visible to the naked eye even in light-polluted locations. The entire area is awash in gas and dust which are made visible by a variety of mechanisms. The yellow and blue regions shine by reflecting the light of the nearby stars. Red regions shine by fluorescence: ultraviolet light from nearby stars excites hydrogen gas to emit a deep red color. The darker regions are dense clouds and filaments of dust that lie in front of the scene and are seen in silhouette.

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Technical Details

Optics:Takahashi FSQ-106 EDX4
Camera:SBIG STX-16803
Mount:Paramount MX+
Filters:SBIG RGB
Dates/Times:1-17 July 2020
Location:RC-Astro North Observatory at New Mexico Skies
Exposure Details:7.75 hours total (R:G:B 3.25:2.75:1.75 hours)
Acquisition:MaxIm DL 6, CCD AutoPilot 5
Processing:PixInsight, Photoshop