Beating in the body of the mythical queen of Aethiopia, Cassiopeia, is the Heart Nebula. Nearly 200 light-years across and 7,500 light-years from Earth, this bright emission nebula spans about 2 degrees of the night sky, an area about four times the diameter of the full Moon. The young, massive star cluster at the center of the Heart energize the surrounding gases dominated by hydrogen, with lesser measures of oxygen and sulfur. I was fortunate to have exceptionally clear and dry weather when I captured the exposures for this project. To visualize the intricate structures of this nebula I acquired about 30 hours of data, emphasizing the very strong hydrogen signal (nearly 20 hours). In this rendition I have used a standard HST palette, where sulfur is red, hydrogen is green, and oxygen is blue. For my taste, this palette reveals the beauty of this spectacular nebula.

 

27.8 hours total exposure of hydrogen, oxygen, and sulfur emissions.

Heart of Cassiopeia

  • About this artwork

    Limited Edition of 50 Signed Prints.

     

    Printed on archival photographic paper with premium acrylic mount,

    21x28"     $1,700

    30x40"     $2,600

    45x60"     $4,950

    Additional sizes are available.

     

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