Monday, 23 November 2009

Gassy young stars

This is me peering deeply into the Pleiades cluster. So deep, even with my field widener attachment, that I could only see two of the stars within the cluster. And this field is 40 arc minutes across. Now, obviously, this isn’t a properly deep picture, like you would see in some expensive CCD camera advert (that doesn’t give a price), or a magazine pic of the week. But to me it is deep, because it shows lots of blue clouds floating about between the stars, reflecting their spectrally blue cosmic light. It wasn’t a long, or particularly well tracked set of camera exposures, but it’s the subject I’m interested in, and my aim is to maximise the aesthetic appeal of the final picture. Contributing to that appeal is a particularly quirky set of flare lines coming off the star Alcyone at the left that provides a skewed detail to the picture. The streaky nebula at centre is named after the star, Merope which is only 30% as bright as Alcyone.

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