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Oh well… a certain dodgy hosting company managed to lose my last site, so I’m having to do it all over again. Never mind, it’s nearly winter again and I finally have a permanent observatory and a cooled CCD camera 🙂

This was the first fully processed picture I ever captured, it seems like a lifetime ago but it was less than one year ago, October 2008. That was after months of figuring out Auto-Guiding and modding my first camera, a second hand Canon 300D

Camera: Canon 300D (Ha Modified)
Scope: Skywatcher Explorer 200P 8″ Newt with Baader MPCC
Mount: HEQ5 Pro with ASCOM control
Guiding: Orion ST80 with QHY5
Software: Canon Capture, PHD, Stellarium
Exposures: 12 x 5 minutes = 1 hour total


The Cocoon Nebula, is a reflection and emission nebula in the constellation Cygnus. IC 5146 is a star cluster and the nebula is Sh2-125. It is located near the naked-eye star Pi Cygni, the open cluster NGC 7209 in Lacerta, and the bright open cluster M39. The cluster is about 4,000 light years away, and the central star that lights it formed about 100,000 years ago. The nebula is about 12 arcmins across, which is equivalent to a span of 15 light years. When viewing IC 5146, dark nebula Barnard 168 (B168) is an inseparable part of the experience, forming a dark lane that surrounds the cluster and projects westward forming the appearance of a trail behind the Cocoon



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