APOD: Reflections on vdB 31 (2017 Mar 11)

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APOD: Reflections on vdB 31 (2017 Mar 11)

Postby APOD Robot » Sat Mar 11, 2017 5:07 am

Image Reflections on vdB 31

Explanation: Riding high in the constellation of Auriga, beautiful, blue vdB 31 is the 31st object in Sidney van den Bergh's 1966 catalog of reflection nebulae. It shares this well-composed celestial still life with dark, obscuring clouds recorded in Edward E. Barnard's 1919 catalog of dark markings in the sky. All are interstellar dust clouds, blocking the light from background stars in the case of Barnard's dark nebulae. For vdB 31, the dust preferentially reflects the bluish starlight from embedded, hot, variable star AB Aurigae. Exploring the environs of AB Aurigae with the Hubble Space Telescope has revealed the several million year young star is itself surrounded by flattened dusty disk with evidence for the ongoing formation of a planetary system. AB Aurigae is about 470 light-years away. At that distance this cosmic canvas would span about four light-years.

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Ann
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Re: APOD: Reflections on vdB 31 (2017 Mar 11)

Postby Ann » Sat Mar 11, 2017 9:45 am

Today's APOD is a very beautiful portrait of AE Aurigae and the complex patterns of surrounding dust, gas and reflection nebulosity.

I need some help here, though. Adam Block's image shows two stars surrounded by reflection nebulosity, blue AB Aur and yellowish - yes, what's the name or designation of the yellowish star? My software doesn't show it. The star's surrounding reflection nebula is yellow, which is unusual. And there is what looks like a jet shooting out from the star, between two diffraction spikes.

By the way, is north up and east to the left in this image?

I have another question. How long does it usually take for planetary bodies to coalesce out of the protoplanetary disk of a young star?

Ann
Last edited by Ann on Sat Mar 11, 2017 5:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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heehaw

Re: APOD: Reflections on vdB 31 (2017 Mar 11)

Postby heehaw » Sat Mar 11, 2017 11:46 am

A very beautiful and dramatic photograph (oops, image)!

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Re: APOD: Reflections on vdB 31 (2017 Mar 11)

Postby starsurfer » Sat Mar 11, 2017 1:14 pm

Ann wrote:Today's APOD is a very beautiful portrait of AE Aurigae and the complex patterns of surrounding dust, gas and reflection nebulosity.

I need some help here, though. Adam Block's image shows two stars surrounded by reflection nebulosity, blue AE Aur and yellowish - yes, what's the name or designation of the yellowish star? My software doesn't show it. The star's surrounding reflection nebula is yellow, which is unusual. And there is what looks like a jet shooting out from the star, between two diffraction spikes.

By the way, is north up and east to the left in this image?

I have another question. How long does it usually take for planetary bodies to coalesce out of the protoplanetary disk of a young star?

Ann

The second star with reflection nebulosity is SU Aurigae. A yellow reflection nebula isn't that unusual but is rare. North is in the bottom left corner.

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Re: APOD: Reflections on vdB 31 (2017 Mar 11)

Postby starsurfer » Sat Mar 11, 2017 1:16 pm

It's also an interesting coincidence that todays APOD features an image by Adam Block on the same day he is speaking at the CEDIC conference?! :shock: :clap:

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Re: APOD: Reflections on vdB 31 (2017 Mar 11)

Postby starsurfer » Sat Mar 11, 2017 1:30 pm

Also I love Sidney van den Bergh's catalogue of reflection nebulae! Tom Davis has a great gallery here.

Other good galleries of vdB nebulae:
Capella Observatory
Bernhard Hubl

Adam Block has also imaged many other vdB nebulae, for convenience here is a list:
vdB1
vdB4
vdB24
vdB38
vdB93
vdB123
vdB141
vdB142

There are other vdB nebulae that are known more by their NGC numbers or other catalogues.

Sidney van den Bergh also published the small VBRC catalogue of planetary nebulae with Rene Racine. Out of only 7, two so far have been photographed in detail:
VBRC 2 by Don Goldman
VBRC 7 by Steve Crouch

jisles

Re: APOD: Reflections on vdB 31 (2017 Mar 11)

Postby jisles » Sat Mar 11, 2017 4:17 pm

Today's APOD is of AB Aur, not AE Aur as stated earlier by Ann. AE Aur illuminates the Flaming Star Nebula, IC 405. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IC_405

John

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Ann
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Re: APOD: Reflections on vdB 31 (2017 Mar 11)

Postby Ann » Sat Mar 11, 2017 5:24 pm

jisles wrote:Today's APOD is of AB Aur, not AE Aur as stated earlier by Ann. AE Aur illuminates the Flaming Star Nebula, IC 405. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IC_405

John


You're right! Thanks, John, I just edited my post.

Ann
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Re: APOD: Reflections on vdB 31 (2017 Mar 11)

Postby Boomer12k » Sat Mar 11, 2017 11:23 pm

Ummm..... "The Blue Bird Nebula"?... looks like wings and a bird to me... :D

Really nice blue nebula...

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Hyperx43c

Re: APOD: Reflections on vdB 31 (2017 Mar 11)

Postby Hyperx43c » Mon Mar 13, 2017 3:14 pm

Just as interesting, if not more, is the hole in the dust filled frame in the upper right corner.


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