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About the image: This is a true colour wide field photograph of C50/C49, also known as the Rosette nebula, also sometimes called the skull nebula. The image was captured as a focal length of 135mm using the Samyang 135mm F2 manual lens and the ZWO 294 dedicated astro camera cooled to -10 C.
The Rosette Nebula is a large H II region with a open star cluster located at it's centre. There as many new born stars within this central cluster, as observed by the Chandra X-ray observatory launched by NASA in 1999. Within this star forming complex are massive O type stars HD46223 and HD46150 which are believed to be responsible for blowing the ionised bubble from their ultra hot stellar winds, with super hot plasma ranging from 1 to 10 million kelvin.
Other notable objects with the image: NGC 2261 Hubble's variable nebula - in the top right hand corner of the image, as this focal lengh of 135mm, this nebula appears very small, it is something I plan to image at some point in the future with my larger scopes. This nebula is very interesting for the fact that the primary star, R Monocerotis, dims and brightens regularly, almost like a light house, and as a result it is possible to watch light travel through the nebula when photographed regularly over many months / years.
NGC 2236 - To the right of the Rosette nebula in this image, NGC2236 is a metal poor open star cluster, a detailed study of this cluster can be found here https://academic.oup.com/mnras/article/379/1/159/1133251
Where in our galaxy is it?
The Rosette nebula lies approx 5,200 light years away in the Perseus arm of the milky way.
Original map by Nasa
Where in the sky is it?
The California Nebula can be found in the constellation of Monoceros, to the left and slightly down from the star Betelgeuse, at slightly more than the distance between betelguese and Bellatrix.