Horse Head Nebula

I’ve always liked the Horsehead nebula (also known as Barnard 33 in emission nebula IC 434). I remember looking at amazing photos of it in astronomy books and marvelling at it. It is s a dark nebula in the constellation Orion. The nebula is located just to the south of the star Alnitak, which is farthest west on Orion’s Belt.

I haven;t yet been able to see it through our telescope, but I was pretty pleased to manage to capture it, albeit faintly, in a photo. The photo was taken using my Canon 450D with a 60mm lens, piggyback mounted on the telescope. You can quite clearly see the Flame Nebula (NGC 2024) just below the atar Alnitak and to the right o f it you can make out the dark horsehead shape of the horsehead nebula too.

Horsehead Nebula

Horsehead Nebula

Ok, it’s nothing compared to some of the truly amazing photos that some astro-photographers manage to produce, but considering the equipment I’m using and the fact that I’m new to it all I’m quite pleased to have captured this. It’s pretty clever that a standard SLR camera with a small 60mm lens can capture detail in something that is 1,500 light years from Earth.

2 Responses

  1. Emily Heath says:

    Wow, that’s beautiful!

  2. Alan says:

    Thanks Emily – I need to do a lot of work to get anywhere near the sorts of results some people are getting, but I’m just pleased to have captured something. It really is amazing if you think about what it actually is that you’re capturing on the sensor too.


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Alan Cole

Alan is a Freelance Website Designer, Sports & Exercise Science Lab Technician and full time Dad & husband with far too many hobbies: Triathlete, Swimming, Cycling, Running, MTBing, Surfing, Windsurfing, SUPing, Gardening, Photography.... The list goes on.

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