Out from behind the curtain and fully dressed with her RGB stars, here is my full tricolour NB image just completed during Melbourne’s third lockdown.

Good to revisit this object again with the new toys. It’s been six years since I last visited this target!

New toys and more experience sure do make a difference, and thanks to Stellarmate, it all happens while I’m sleeping now  

Approx 12 hrs data, swapped out the NB stars for RGB as the Gem cluster is so pretty! 

Andy Campbell, Melbourne Australia, Feb 2021

Gabriella Revealed! NGC 3324 nebula in Narrowband
Gabriella Revealed! NGC 3324 nebula in Narrowband

Capture Details

TelescopeTakahashi TOA 130
CameraQSI 6162 WSG8
MountTakahashi NJP Temma 2
FiltersChroma RG&B, 5nm Ha & S2, 3nm O3
Guiding CameraStarlight Xpress Lodestar X2
Integration time (Exposure)12.0 hrs
LocationBurwood, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
DateFeb, 2021

About this Nebula

NGC 3324 is located in the southern constellation of Carina roughly 7500 light-years from Earth. It is on the northern outskirts of the chaotic environment of the Carina Nebula, which has been sculpted by many other pockets of star formation. A rich deposit of gas and dust in the NGC 3324 region fuelled a burst of star birth there several millions of years ago and led to the creation of several hefty and very hot stars that are prominent in this picture.

Stellar winds and intense radiation from these young stars have blown open a hollow in the surrounding gas and dust. This is most in evidence as the wall of material seen to the centre right of this image. The ultraviolet radiation from the hot young stars knocks electrons out of hydrogen atoms, which are then recaptured, as the electrons cascade through the energy levels, showing the extent of the local diffuse gas.

As with clouds in the Earth’s sky, observers of nebulae can find likenesses within these cosmic clouds. One nickname for the NGC 3324 region is the Gabriela Mistral Nebula, after the Nobel Prize-winning Chilean poet. The edge of the wall of gas and dust at the right bears a strong resemblance to a human face in profile, with the “bump” in the centre corresponding to a nose. (text- apod)

“Love beauty it is the shadow of God on the Universe”

- Gabriella Mistral