The Soul (or Embryo Nebula as it is sometimes called) lies in the constellation of Cassiopeia close to the Heart Nebula.  It is likewise about 7500 ly away.  It is about half the size of the Heart Nebula with a similar absolute magnitude of 6.5. The designation IC 1848 is actually an open cluster in the center of the nebula. Taken under poor seeing conditions, and very short visibility window, we are still very pleased with Hydrogen-alpha emission data on which the image is based.  Here, the brightest areas have been pushed towards yellow to differentiate better structures that can be seen in the data.  The inward pointing pillars are formed by the strong stellar winds from the center of the nebula, the tips of which are areas of new star formation, which is why they are brighter than other areas of the nebula. The image is part of the “Flaming Sky” series: Showcase.

Celestron RASA 11″
10Micron GM1000 HPS
SIGMA fp (monochrome)
H-alpha ultra-fast narrowband filter,
20 x 30 sec., ISO 3200, F2.2 620mm

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