Elephant’s Trunk – Close Up – CDK12.5

Elephant’s Trunk – Close Up – CDK12.5

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Imaging Telescopes Or Lenses : Planewave CDK12.5
Imaging Cameras : QHYCCD QHY268 M
Mounts : Astro-Physics 1100GTO
Filters : Chroma H-alpha 3nm Bandpass 50 mm · Chroma OIII 3nm Bandpass 50 mm · Chroma SII 3nm Bandpass 50 mm
Accessories : Planewave Reducer 0.66x CDK12.5-14-17
Software : Pleiades Astrophoto PixInsight · Stefan Berg Nighttime Imaging ‘N’ Astronomy (N.I.N.A. / NINA)

Acquisition details

Dates : Sept. 15, 2021
Frames : Chroma H-alpha 3nm Bandpass 50 mm: 52×300″(4h 20′)
Chroma OIII 3nm Bandpass 50 mm: 45×300″
(3h 45′)
Chroma SII 3nm Bandpass 50 mm: 40×300″
(3h 20′)
Integration : 11h 25′
Avg. Moon age : 9.14 days
Avg. Moon phase : 68.24%


The Elephant’s Trunk Nebula is interstellar gas and dust about 2,400 light years away from Earth.
The bright rim is the surface of the dense cloud that is being illuminated and ionized by a very bright massive star. The entire region is ionized by the massive star, except for dense globules that can protect themselves from the star’s harsh ultraviolet rays.

The combined action of the light from the massive star ionizing and compressing the rim of the cloud, and the wind from the young stars shifting gas from the center outward lead to very high compression in the Elephant’s Trunk Nebula. This pressure has triggered the current generation of protostars (young stars being born).

Taken with the CDK12.5 and the PW 0.66 reducer from our backyard over 3 nights through semi-cloudy skies.

The AP1100GTO performed admirably, tracking the target unguided  through the clouds and allowing data to be captured throughout the night. The subs(exposures) blocked by clouds were then deleted.

The QHY268m  with its very low Read Noise and very high quantum efficiency is a perfect candidate for the task.

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