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M45 - The Pleiades


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About this observation
Graham Roberts
Time of observation
17/11/2018 - 21:30
Observing location
Redhill, Surrey, UK
William Optics GT81 + Focal Reducer FL 382mm f4.72
ZWO1600MM-Cool (mono) CMOS sensor
LRGB of 50x1minL, 45x1min RGB
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Graham comments on this fine image as follows:

I have successfully imaged the Pleiades before with a DSLR camera but this was the first serious attempt to capture their elusive charm with a more sensitive mono camera.  When imaging the Sisters the objectives are two-fold – to capture: (i) their brilliance and colour, and (ii) the delicate interplay of their light illuminating the interstellar gas and dust behind which they are currently moving. It is this latter effect that forms their characteristic signature which differentiates them from other open star clusters.

Given the brightness of the Pleiades stars I chose short 60-second LRGB exposures at Unity setting.  Such is the subtle nature of the interstellar illumination against the intensity of the large, bright Pleiades stars, that post-processing needs to be especially careful in order to tease out the contrasting nature of the two features.  The result is a beautiful image which captures the power and beauty of this special group of stars which precedes Orion later in the evening in November.

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