APOD: M78 and Reflecting Dust Clouds (2014 Mar 26)

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APOD Robot
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APOD: M78 and Reflecting Dust Clouds (2014 Mar 26)

Post by APOD Robot » Wed Mar 26, 2014 4:06 am

Image M78 and Reflecting Dust Clouds

Explanation: An eerie blue glow and ominous columns of dark dust highlight M78 and other bright reflection nebula in the constellation of Orion. The dark filamentary dust not only absorbs light, but also reflects the light of several bright blue stars that formed recently in the nebula. Of the two reflection nebulas pictured above, the more famous nebula is M78, in the image center, while NGC 2071 can be seen to its lower left. The same type of scattering that colors the daytime sky further enhances the blue color. M78 is about five light-years across and visible through a small telescope. M78 appears above only as it was 1600 years ago, however, because that is how long it takes light to go from there to here. M78 belongs to the larger Orion Molecular Cloud Complex that contains the Great Nebula in Orion and the Horsehead Nebula.

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Ann
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Re: APOD: M78 and Reflecting Dust Clouds (2014 Mar 26)

Post by Ann » Wed Mar 26, 2014 5:56 am

That's a great picture!

Of course, it makes me think of the nursery rhyme that I learned only as an adult since we don't have anything similar in Sweden:

There was an old woman
Tossed up in a basket
Seventeen times as high as the moon.
Where she was going
I just had to ask it,
For in her hand she carried a broom.

"Old woman, old woman,
Old woman," said I,
"Please tell me, please tell me,
Why you're up so high?"
"I'm sweeping the cobwebs
Down from the sky,
And I'll be with you
By and by."

Well, it's going to take the old woman a long time to sweep the cobwebs of dust out of Orion, that's for sure.

Ann
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Re: APOD: M78 and Reflecting Dust Clouds (2014 Mar 26)

Post by dante alighieri » Wed Mar 26, 2014 8:02 am

A nice picture. Do you see the genie in the middle a bit to the right. His left profile :)

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Re: APOD: M78 and Reflecting Dust Clouds (2014 Mar 26)

Post by starsurfer » Wed Mar 26, 2014 11:15 am

Impressive image of a very busy site of star formation! I think the description should have mentioned McNeil's Nebula, the small white cometary reflection nebula near the right side.

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Re: APOD: M78 and Reflecting Dust Clouds (2014 Mar 26)

Post by orin stepanek » Wed Mar 26, 2014 12:03 pm

What can I say? It's a nice picture! :thumb_up: :thumb_up: 8-) In my humble opinion; this picture deserves more that 3 smileys!
Orin

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CURRAHEE CHRIS
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Re: APOD: M78 and Reflecting Dust Clouds (2014 Mar 26)

Post by CURRAHEE CHRIS » Wed Mar 26, 2014 12:42 pm

Another really exciting picture. This quote has me pleased as I always feel like these images are beyond the threshold of mere mortals like myself:

"and visible through a small telescope"

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Ron-Astro Pharmacist
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Re: APOD: M78 and Reflecting Dust Clouds (2014 Mar 26)

Post by Ron-Astro Pharmacist » Wed Mar 26, 2014 3:15 pm

My "Pie in the Sky" wish might be to be able to view nebulas as three dimensional objects – to be able to rotate them around to see as they exist in space. Since I'm dreaming – why not go all the way. I'd like to see them as they exist in time too! For now I'll just have to use my imagination and look around to see what they've become.

Or I could Google it?

http://www.spacetelescope.org/videos/astro_bo/
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Re: APOD: M78 and Reflecting Dust Clouds (2014 Mar 26)

Post by Anthony Barreiro » Wed Mar 26, 2014 5:37 pm

CURRAHEE CHRIS wrote:Another really exciting picture. This quote has me pleased as I always feel like these images are beyond the threshold of mere mortals like myself:

"and visible through a small telescope"
Any object in the Messier catalogue can be seen in a small telescope if the sky is dark. A few are bright enough to be seen with the naked eye even in moderately light polluted skies. Most Messier objects are visible in binoculars, although objects with small angular dimensions will just look like a slightly fuzzy star. M78 is just big enough to look like a reasonably bright little fuzzball in binoculars. Different sources call M78 either the brightest reflection nebula in the sky, or one of the brightest.

Messier used telescopes of 3.5 to 7.5 inches of aperture, with mirrors and lenses that transmitted significantly less light than modern optics. Messier did most of his observing from Paris, fortunately for him before the blight of nighttime light pollution.

Looking at a given object through a small telescope and comparing that with how it appears in long-exposure narrowband images like this one informs and enhances both views, at least for me.
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LocalColor
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Re: APOD: M78 and Reflecting Dust Clouds (2014 Mar 26)

Post by LocalColor » Wed Mar 26, 2014 10:53 pm

Inspiration for small telescope owners (wishing for clear dark nights.)

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Re: APOD: M78 and Reflecting Dust Clouds (2014 Mar 26)

Post by Boomer12k » Wed Mar 26, 2014 11:30 pm

I was going to get my broom and start sweeping, but if ANN says there is an Old Woman already doing it....then I won't bother....


Nice Shot!!!

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Re: APOD: M78 and Reflecting Dust Clouds (2014 Mar 26)

Post by Boomer12k » Wed Mar 26, 2014 11:31 pm

On viewing.....Going to rain, rain, rain, here for the next fortnight....

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