Pacman Nebula by Ian Barredo
Pacman Nebula. (Ian Barredo)

Pacman Nebula by Ian Barredo

It took 21 hours of shooting to capture this beautifully balanced photograph of Pacman Nebula. Photographer Ian Barredo explains.

Ian Barredo easily chomped into this week’s winning spot with his successful second attempt imaging NGC 281 — the Pacman Nebula.

Shot from Regina, Saskatchewan, the nebula, said Barredo, is bright enough to be imaged easily from his “Bortle 8 backyard.”

“I find this nebula beautiful because of its shape and it is Oxygen III structure, which appears bluish-green when processed using the Hubble Palette,” he wrote in an email.

Judges said they indeed appreciated how nicely balanced the colours were. They also spoke about the dedication needed to to produce the image — 21 hours in shooting alone —  and noted the good detail in the technically well-done image.

Barredo said this was his second attempt at imaging this object. He said the first time, he used an 80mm telescope and 12nm narrowband filters.

“For the second attempt I used a 103mm telescope and camera with smaller sensor than previously, and narrower 7 nm narrowband filters,” Barredo pointed out. “That allowed me to have a closer look at the details of the nebula, with finer details.”

He also noted he used a WilliamOptics 103mm refractor with a ZWO ASI 183 mono and a AZEQ6 mount, shooting 21 hours using narrowband filters.