Christmas Tree Cluster NGC2264



Scope: FSQ-106N at  f/5,  Blair Valley, Anza Borrego Desert, CA,  25 January 2012, Camera: ST8300M

Exposure: 10 x 10 minutes (1x1) H-Alpha, 12 x 6 minute UV/IR Block ,  and 8 x 4 minute (2x2) RGB Exposures 

Processing: Images were captured with CCDSoft. Aligned/stacked and dark subtracted in Astroart ; Sigma Combine method was used for stacking subs.  All channels were scaled and rough color balanced in Astroart.   Channels were co-registered in Astroart.   Central gradient was removed in Astroart. The H-Alpha and UV/IR Block exposures  were used for the main luminance construction.  Level adjustments and curves were used to bring out object features.   LRGB combine was done in Photoshop.   Final touches and color balance in Photoshop. Final Image size is approximately 3252x2532 (cropped and resized to 2800x 2100).


All exposures in this image were guided; North is up in this image. This is an extended cloud of gas and dust popularly known as the "Christmas Tree Nebula". At the "tip" of the tree is the Cone Nebula. This region of the Milky way Galaxy is an active star forming region. Near the bright star at the tree base is the star cluster cataloged as NGC2264.  It is a distance of about 2,400 light years from Earth. The open cluster on the lower right is Trumpler 5. It is a distance of about 7,800 light years from earth. This image replaces an earlier image that can be seen in the Archives here.  The Horizontal FOV is 120'.

Image center is located approximately - Equatorial 2000: RA: 06h 39m 35s Dec: +0945'08"


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