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SH2-129 - the Flying Bat Nebula and Ou4 - the Squid Nebula

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About this observation
Observer
Jan Rek
Time of observation
09/08/2019 - 23:00
Object
SH2-129
Observing location
ICAstro site, Alcalali then Oria, Spain. Elevation 1022 m Lat 38°:45.4 N, Long 00°:02.1W
Equipment
Tak FSQ106N at 530 mm focal length, F/5
Camera - Moravian Instruments G3-16200 with 7 position FW and OAG
Starlight Instruments Boss Focuser with FSQ rear cell replacement
Lodestar guide camera
Exposure
L:20 x 10 min + R:G:B 10 x 10 min each Narrowband exposures: Ha 16 x 20 min, OIII 44x20min + 30x30 min. Total exposure time 43hrs 20min
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This image was captured by Jan in remote sessions using Splashtop control from his home in Ravenshead, UK.

Discovered in 2011 by French astro-imager Nicolas Outters, the Squid Nebula's alluring bipolar shape is distinguished here by the telltale blue-green emission from doubly ionized oxygen atoms. Though apparently completely surrounded by the reddish hydrogen emission region SH2-129, the true distance and nature of the Squid Nebula have been difficult to determine. A recent investigation suggests Ou4 really does lie within SH2-129 some 2,300 light-years away. Consistent with that scenario, Ou4 would represent a spectacular outflow driven by HR8119, a triple system of hot, massive stars seen near the center of the nebula. If so, the truly giant Squid Nebula would physically be nearly 50 light-years across.

This field is approx 141 x 176 arcminutes - ie ~ 6 x 4 Moon diameters and the emission nebula lies approx 2.5 degrees south of alpha Cephei (Aleramin).

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