Helix Nebula (NGC 7293)

Helix nebula is a planetary nebula (PN) some 650 light-years from us, in the constellation of Aquarius. The nebula carries this name as it resembles a spring when viewed orthogonally from above, and it is the most detailed and brightest PNs when viewed from Earth, with intricate details and geometric symmetries.

The Helix Nebula contains cometary knots, or globules, which are believed to be typical for PNs, but can be observed only in nearest PNs, including Dumbbell and Ring Nebulae.  It is believed that these cometary knots are not close to the state of gravitational collapse, which means that, in the current observed state, they would not collapse and produce planets (see this research).











Data and processing: Goran Petrov
License: Creative Commons BY NC (free for non-commercial use, with attribution).
Click on the image to view full size.

Location: Petralica, Rankovce, Macedonia
Dates: 2019-09-28 and 2019-09-29
Total integration time: 5.5 hours

Camera 1: ATIK One 9.0, cooled to -15C
Telescope 1: Takahashi FSQ 106 ED refractor
Ha and OIII (bicolor NB): total of 32 frames x 10 min

Processed in PixInsight.