The Core of the Heart Nebula

Object: The Core of the Heart Nebula

This is my extreme close-up shot inside the core of the Heart Nebula Complex with Melotte 15, here is a 9 hour exposure (180 x 120 sec subs) in Narrow Band H-Alpha, Sulphur II & Oxygen III light captured over 2 nights, along with about 80 calibration frames for each night, all taken through my 9.25″ EDGEHD. scope & ZWO 2600MM (mono) camera, yes taken from my backyard observatory in Land o Lakes Florida. The Heart nebula, also known as Index Catalog IC-1805, Sharpless 2-190, with Melotte 15 open star cluster lies some 7500 light years away from Earth and is located in the Perseus Arm of our Milky Way Galaxy in the constellation Cassiopeia. It was discovered by William Herschel on 3 November 1787. This is an emission nebula showing glowing ionized hydrogen gas and darker dust lanes.The nebula’s intense red/golden output and its shape/configuration are driven by the radiation emanating from a small group of stars near the nebula’s center(right). It reminds me of twisted ropes…This open cluster of stars known as Melotte 15 contains a few bright stars nearly 50 times the mass of our Sun, and many more dim stars that are only a fraction of our Sun’s mass.


Rights Statement: Copyright, Julio Encarnacion, 2022

Acquisition Dates: 10-2-2022 – 10-03-2022

Published Date: October 3, 2022

Location: Driveway, Land o Lakes, Florida.

Optics: Celestron EDGE HD 9.25

Mount: Sky-Watcher EQ6R-Pro

Camera: ZWO ASI2600MM Pro (mono)

Filters: Astrodon – Ha (5nm); SII (3nm); OIII (3nm)

Guiding: ZWO L-OAG with ASI174MM-MINI

Gain: 100

Cooling: 14F

Integration:  Ha (60×120”); SII (60X120”); OII (60X120”)

Software: Mount Control: EQMOD; Acquisition, Guiding, Polar Alignment: ZWO ASIAIR Plus; Processing: Pixinisght 1.8.9 and Adobe Photoshop