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Jon Greif

Location of Photo:

Vancouver, BC, Canada

Date/Time of photo:

December 30, 2021


Planewave 20 inch TDK reflecting telescope and monochrome camera with LRGB filters. Processing in Pixinsight 1.8.8 software.


During the 18th century, famed French astronomer Charles Messier noticed the presence of several “nebulous objects” while surveying the night sky. Originally mistaking these objects for comets, he began to catalog them so that others would not make the same mistake. Today, the resulting list (known as the Messier Catalog) includes over 100 objects and is one of the most influential catalogs of Deep Space Objects. One of these is the reflection nebula known as Messier 78 located in the constellation Orion, just above the Eastern most of the 3 stars making up Orion's belt. M78, about 1,350 light-years from Earth, is a bright diffuse reflection nebula that is illuminated over an expanse of about four light years by the energy of its embedded bright stars. This image was processed from data provided me by Dr. Christian Sasse, of Vancouver, BC, and represents 28.5 hours of imaging time from a Planewave 20 inch reflecting telescope, about evenly mixed between red, green, blue and clear (luminance) filters through a monochrome camera.