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NGC 2359


NGC 2359 Thor's Helmet in Canis Major

RA = 7 hrs 18 min; Dec = -13 deg 14 min

Date & Site:

Imaged on 12/24/13; Runningman Observatory, Carlsbad, CA

Clear; very good seeing; very good transparency

Temperatures in low 50s


Telescope: AT8RC (1625 mm fl f/8)

Mount: Losmandy G-11 with Gemini
Camera: ST-10XME; CFW10 with 3 nm Astrodon filters;

Hutech Off-Axis Guider (OAG5)


Exposures: 1.5 hrs of Ha; 1 hr each OIII and SII (15 min subexposures) for a total of 3.5 hrs.

Color mapped using the Hubble Palette assigning Ha to Green; OIII to blue and SII to red

FOV =32 x 21.5 arc minutes

NGC 2359 contains a central star known as a Wolf-Rayet star - an extremely hot giant thought to be in a brief, pre-supernova stage of evolution. Interactions between this transition star and a nearby large molecular cloud are thought to contribute to the complex shape and curved bow-shock structure of Thor's Helmet. The object is 30 light years across.

15,000 light years away

Reduced 60% from original

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