Daily Telescope: Two nebulae in Orion for the price of one

Estimated read time 2 min read

The Flame and Horsehead nebulae in Orion.
Enlarge / The Flame and Horsehead nebulae in Orion.

Andrew Desrosiers

Welcome to the Daily Telescope. There is a little too much darkness in this world and not enough light, a little too much pseudoscience and not enough science. We’ll let other publications offer you a daily horoscope. At Ars Technica, we’re going to take a different route, finding inspiration from very real images of a universe that is filled with stars and wonder.

Good morning. It’s March 1, and today’s image showcases two nebulae within the Orion constellation.

On the left of the image you can see the Flame Nebula, named as such because it’s an emoticon often used in gaming chats—just kidding. Rather, it’s an emission nebula about 1,000 light-years from Earth. To the right of the image is the rather iconic Horsehead Nebula, which really does resemble the head of a horse. It’s a little less than 1,400 light-years from Earth. The darkness in the nebula is mostly due to thick dust blocking the light of the stars behind it.

Andrew Desrosiers sent in this image, which he took from his home in Ashby, Massachusetts. It’s the product of about 60 hours of observing the same location of the night sky.

“This is part of a project I started early this winter to keep my telescope just trained on this part of the sky all winter,” he told me. “So far I have captured 60 hours of exposure data.” He hopes to get to 100 before the end of the season.

Source: Andrew Desrosiers

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