Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Flame On!

Here is the Flame Nebula and Alnitak, the left-most star in the belt of Orion, as captured by the QUEST camera which was installed (from 2003 until last fall) on Palomar's 48-inch Samuel Oschin Telescope.
Be sure to click on the image to enlarge it.

Click here for a much wider view of the same part of the sky, captured with the same telescope (during the Second Palomar Observatory Sky Survey), and nicely processed by Davide De Martin at Skyfactory.org.

Of course if you want a much closer look at the Flame Nebula have a look at this image captured by the 200-inch Hale Telescope. It is an near-infrared image so it looks quite different from the other two. You'll see quite a bit more stars in the near-infrared view. Why is that?

You can find more cool images captured by QUEST here.

Of course QUEST is now gone and a new camera and a new science program have replaced it - the Palomar Transient Factory.

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