Valentine’s Day. The perfect time for a candlelit dinner, a box of chocolates — or perhaps, if the skies are clear, a wee bit of stargazing. And where better to aim your telescopes than the oh-so-romantic Heart Nebula?
As a nod to the day dedicated to lovers, we wanted to highlight some images of the Heart Nebula from the SkyNews reader community.
The Heart Nebula and its neighbour, the aptly-named Soul Nebula, are found in Cassiopeia.
Located about 6,000 light-years from Earth, NASA states the two nebulae are both massive star-making factories, marked by giant bubbles that were blown into surrounding dust by radiation and winds from the stars.
Capturing the Heart with luminous contrast and crisp clarity, Yves Tremblay won Photo of the Week October 12, 2019 with a two-tile mosaic of IC 1805 in RGB and narrow band.
At that time, he said he found it quite difficult to balance the layers, background intensity and the colours’ intensity.
Oleg Bouevitch won the Photo of the Week February 9, 2018 with his image of the Heart Nebula, as well.
Captured nearby Nepean, Ontario, he used a Takahashi FSQ 106 EDX III astrographic telescope with a 0.73x focal reducer (for a working focal ratio of f/3.65) and Atik 383L+ CCD camera, acquiring a total of 14.5 hours exposure through Astrodon narrowband filters.
And of course, we have to highlight Klaus Brasch’s stunning image of Comet Lovejoy in Cassiopeia along with the two nebulas in 2015. He won the Photo of the Week for April 17, 2015.
The composite image consisted of four three-minute exposures recorded at his retirement home in Arizona with his Canon 6D DSLR camera, fitted with a 135mm f/4 lens and a Hutech IDAS LPS-V4 narrowband nebula filter.