AstroPhotography by Dan Richey

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The nebula Messier 78 (also known as M 78 or NGC 2068) is a reflection nebula in the constellation Orion. It was discovered by Pierre Méchain in 1780 and included by Charles Messier in his catalog of comet-like objects that same year. M78 is the brightest diffuse reflection nebula of a group of nebulae that includes NGC 2064, NGC 2067 and NGC 2071. This group belongs to the Orion Molecular Cloud Complex and is about 1,600 light years distant from Earth. M78 is easily found in small telescopes as a hazy patch and involves two stars of 10th magnitude. These two stars, HD 38563A and HD 38563B, are responsible for making the cloud of dust in M78 visible by reflecting their light.

Object Information

Name M78
Type Refection / Diffuse Nebula
Constellation Orion
Catalogue NGC 2068

Acquisition / Processing

Exposure l - 600 sec x 10 bin 1
R - 300 sec x 10 bin1
G - 300 sec x 10 bin 1
B - 300 sec x 10 bin 1
Total - 4.17 Hrs
Telescope AP 160 EDF - FF
Camera SBIG STT-8300
Camera Temp -52º
Guiding STT-8300 internal
Mount AP 1100 GTO
Filters Astrodon II LRGB
Processing Pixinsight
Location San Pedro Creek
Date 1/14/18

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