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  • Writer's pictureTracey Snelus

Put your heart and soul into it

The Heart and Soul nebula are both emission nebula that are located in the constellation of Cassiopeia. Located 7500 and 6500 light years away respectively, the region spans across the sky over ten times as wide as the full moon and eight times as high (5.5 x 3.9 degrees).

I wanted to capture the two together as they really complement each other and there are a multitude of gems and features tucked away.

In order to set the framing I used the framing and mosaic tool in sequence generator pro. I decided that a 3x3 grid would be the best for fitting in both of the objects. I had to create 9 individual images and to complete the run in one evening I would have to do a mammoth imaging run throughout the night to get 1 hour of data per pane in Hydrogen Alpha.

Each pane consisted of 4 x 900second Ha images.

Data was stacked in deep sky stacker and I used flats and bias from my calibration library and new darks were captured at the end of the imaging run.

Once each panel was stacked I used Microsoft ICE to create the mosaic. I have had good success with ICE but it seems that Microsoft have decided to discontinue this software so it may not be available for download anymore. Finally I processed the image in photoshop and lightroom.

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