IC 5146

The Cocoon Nebula


Inside the Cocoon Nebula is a newly developing cluster of stars. Cataloged as IC 5146, the beautiful nebula is nearly 15 light-years wide, located some 4,000 light years away toward the northern constellation Cygnus. Like other star forming regions, it stands out in red, glowing, hydrogen gas excited by young, hot stars and blue, dust-reflected starlight at the edge of an otherwise invisible molecular cloud. In fact, the bright star near the center of this nebula is likely only a few hundred thousand years old, powering the nebular glow as it clears out a cavity in the molecular cloud's star forming dust and gas.

Imaging Data

Date: 8-26-2010

Location : Sudbury, Massachusetts

Optics : televue 85 Apochromatic Refractor F5.6

Filter(s) : None

Mount : Great Polaris Mount

Autoguiding : None

Camera : Canon EOS 1000D Astro-modified

Exposure info : 30 x 25 second Exposures @ISO 1600

Total Exposure : 12.5 minutes