Pulling out incredible detail, Bill Batchelor wins the Photo of the Week on August 6, 2021, for his image of the Cave Nebula.
The Cave Nebula — or Sh2-155 — is a diffuse nebula located about 2,400 light-years away from Earth in the constellation Cepheus. About 10 light-years across, NASA writes that radiation-driven ionization fronts are likely triggering collapsing cores and new star formation within.
Batchelor said he captured the image with a William Optics FLT98 (f/6.3) and a ZWO ASI1600MM-C Pro. He captured data using Astrodon 5nm narrowband filters (Hydrogen-alpha, Oxygen III and Sulphur II) as well as Astrodon LRGB Gen2 E-Series Tru-Balance filters.
Total integration time was 16.25 hours (325 minutes each of Hα, OIII, SII). Narrowband subs were 300 seconds each with a camera gain of 139, he added.
Shooting from Coquitlam, British Columbia, he gathered data July 3 and July 8 and combined it with data from August 14-15, 2020.
“Acquired under somewhat trying conditions as I had to deal with above average temperatures and periodic smoke from forest fires,” he noted.
Our honourable mention this week goes to Jason Dain for his exquisite image of the Crescent Nebula.
Dain said this is his first bicolour mono narrowband image taken with his new camera and filters.
“I have shot this before with a dual narrowband filter on a one-shot colour camera, but wasn’t able to bring out as much detail around the oxygen shell as I was able to with a mono camera,” he wrote.
Prizes for the 2021-22 SkyNews Photo of the Week contest are sponsored by Sky-Watcher, Celestron, iOptron, The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada and SkyNews. Find more here on the amazing telescopes, prize packages and gift vouchers awarded to the best photos this year.