Photo of the Week for July 26, 2019
Situated squarely within the luminous haze of the northern Milky Way, Cygnus is home to numerous deep-sky wonders. One of the celestial Swan’s lesser-known treasures is the Cocoon Nebula, also known as IC5146. The nebula is a glowing cloud of hydrogen gas lit from within by a clutch of newborn stars. Glimpsing the Cocoon requires a narrow-band filter, a dark sky, and moderately sized optics to glimpse.
This wonderfully detailed Cocoon portrait was captured by Haneytown, New Brunswick, astrophotographer Scott Champion. He used a MallinCam VRC-8 Ritchey-Chrétien astrograph fitted with an Astro-Physics CCDT67 focal reducer for a working f-ratio of f/5.4, and an Atik 383L+ monochromatic CCD camera shooting through Baader Planetarium filters to acquire a total of 3¼ hours exposure data for this image.