Location of Photo:
Chula Vista, Ca
Date/Time of photo:
C-8 with Field Flatter mounted on a CGEM, 80mm Orion Auto Guider, Sky Glow Filter( 1/4 mile away from Ralphs Shopping Center), Orion Star Shoot Pro. 30 - 5 minute images stacked in MaximDL then the High-100%, Mid-50%, Low-20% layered in Photo Shop.
M17 can be easily seen in binoculars and in a telescope the brighter portion of the nebula has the very distinctive shape of a swan, or the Greek letter Omega, or a horseshoe, hence its popular names. As with most bright emission nebulae, M17 is a large concentration of hydrogen gas and dust in space. The brighter portion of the nebula is about 15 light years wide, but the entire complex is much larger. The gas glows red from the emission of light from the gas which is excited by the ultra-violet light of hot young stars forming from the nebula. About 40 stars are involved in the open cluster associated with the nebulosity of M17, the brightest being magnitude 9.3. P.L. de Cheseaux discovered M17 in 1764, and Charles Messier independently observed it and listed it in his famous catalog in the same year.