M16 – The Eagle Nebula

An open cluster of stars in the constellation of Serpens, although it’s close to Scutum, with a diffuse emissions nebula which is another H II region. This nebula, in some images, has an eagle shape visible within it, and is also the home of the Pillars of Creation image from the Hubble Space Telescope. The nebula is a star forming region in the thick clouds of gas and dust which stand out in the pillars. It’s distance is around 6500 light-years away, and the towers of gas coming off the nebula are approximately 9.5 light-years high.

Location of M16 - The Eagle Nebula

‘X’ marks the spot of M16

My Observation: This nebula is extremely faint, and I was only able to spot a hint of nebulosity through the eyepiece after gazing at it for a few minutes. Averted vision was definitely needed in order to spot this nebula. Luckily I had looked up and seen the Eagle Nebula enough to know what to look for as far as the open cluster within it which I could see no problem through the eyepiece. I also used M17 as a guide as M16 is a little over 2° northeast of it.

The Eagle Nebula, Messier 16

M16 – The Eagle Nebula. June 14, 2012

M16 – Eagle Nebula – This is a re-edit of the same original images.

This image is 41 images at 30 seconds a piece and 41 dark frames, stacked in Deep Sky Stacker and post processed in Photoshop. Image taken on June 14, 2012

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