Best of AOP - Diffuse Nebulae

Cone Nebula

The Cone Nebula is located at the southern end of star cluster NGC 2264, in Monoceros. It is a column of dark dust, six lightyears long, near some of the newly-formed hot blue stars of the cluster.

This object parallels the dust pillars seen in the Eagle Nebula, where regions of thick dust and gas resist being cleared away by the intense ultraviolet radiation from young giant stars. The edge of the column, especially the tip, is bright with red light from ionized hydrogen.

This nebula and the cluster that illuminates it are about 2600 lightyears away.

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Last Updated: 06-Jun-2014

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About This Image

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Equipment

20in RC Optical Systems telescope Operating at f/8.1

Paramount ME Robotic Telescope Mount

SBIG ST10XME CCD camera with color filter wheel

LRGB color production was used to create this image.

Luminance = 75 minutes binned 1x1

Red = 20 minutes binned 2x2

Green = 20 minutes binned 2x2

Blue = 20 minutes binned 2x2

Minimum credit line: Michael Gariepy/Adam Block/NOAO/AURA/NSF