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Variable nebula update

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mike harlow's picture
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Variable nebula update

Is Gyulbudaghian's nebula fading?

This nebula is associated with PV Cephei at RA 20h 46m Dec +67d 58m and has been monitored for many years by the BAA DSS and myself.  Attached are three images from this year taken in January, March and last night (May 6th). All were taken with the University of Iowa 0.51M Gemini telescope in Arizona and they are all single 3 minute exposures through a luminance filter.

Almost exactly 10 years ago Gyulbudaghian's nebula (MrG to its friends!) faded from view completely for a few months.  Is history repeating itself?  More images of MrG appear on the Orwell Astronomical Society web site at: http://www.oasi.org.uk/Obsvns/20190211_VN/20190211_VN.php

It will be well worth imaging this object over the next few months.  All images would be gratefully received by Nick Hewitt of the DSS.

Mike

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Mr G

Yes, but are the exposures similar enough to make a valid comparison. There are 4 faintish stars easily visible in the outer nebulosity of the March 4th image that are barely detectable in the 1st May image?

Andrew

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MrG Images

Hi Andrew,

You are right, the May image isn't as good as the previous two, probably due to poorer seeing conditions.  That's why my post was more of a question than a statement and I have requested more images to confirm any fading.  I think the trend is real but maybe exaggerated by the image quality.

More observations welcome!!!

Mike.

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Seeing conditions

This is why Owen and I always maintain that reliable observations of VN have to be  the domain of imaging and not visual. Visual observations are far more affected by seeing conditions than the camera and the above example shows how much a camera can be affected. I have observed Mr G visually a couple of times in the 24" (not for some time now) but the view is always too tenuous to note any detail/change. As a visual dinosaur I have to concede the camera wins in this field :-)

Andrew

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Gemini telescope

Mike, How did you get to use this telescope? Stewart Bean

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Using the Gemini telescope

Hi Stewart,

The Gemini telescope is part of the Sierra stars observatory network (SSON). Have a look at their web site at: http://sierrastars.com/ .  If you want to use it you will have to set up an account and then buy some credits.  Then you can schedule jobs to look at whatever you want.

A word of caution though, as with most things you usually only see the good images.  There are often 'issues' with using remote telescopes so don't expect perfect results every time.  Prepare for some disappointments...the image I downloaded this morning was rubbish!!!

Have you looked at iTelescope?  They have a wide range of telescope sizes suited to all sorts of observing projects (SSON only have two 0.5M instruments).  Payment there is with a monthly subscription but you can change the amount you pay on your 'Plan' quite easily.

Hope that helps,

Mike.