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M46 and M47

About this object

M46 and M47 are two nicely contasting star cluster in the constellation Puppis. M46,center right, is magnitude 6.1 and approx 20X20 arcmin wide. On the north side of it is the planetary nebula PK231+4.2 shining at magnitude 10.1. You can see it as a small bluish/green round ball just on the top edge of M46. 1.3 degrees West Northwest of M46 on the upper right side of the image is the open cluster M47 which shines at magnitude 4.4 and is 25X25 arcmin wide. It contains several bright blue stars. In between the two clusters is a small open cluster called NGC 2425. It looks like a small peppering of orange and white stars. Lastly one more planetary nebula is in the image. Its PK231+4.1 and it lies 23.5 arcmin to the north of M46. Can you find it? Here is a crop of the area where it is. PK231+4.1 is yellowis and reddish in color and only 30 arcsec in size. By looking at the higher resolution images you can probably find it much easier. Both of these planetary nebulas are the remains of stars which, near the end of thier life, expelled the gas which makes up the star outward into space.

Image Details

  • Optics : Stellarvue SVR130 Triplet Refractor
  • Mount: Mountain Instruments MI-250
  • Camera: QSI 583
  • Filters: Astronomik Type 2 LRGB filter set
  • Exposure: LRGB 120:60:60:60
  • Camera/Mount Control: Maxim DL 4.56, CCD Commander
  • Location: Stark Bayou Observatory, Ocean Springs, MS
  • Date: Feb 10
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