Shockwaves of enriched ionized Oxygen from a nearby star that exploded as a supernova some 11,000 years ago are seen against an Ha rich background in Vela.

This region of the Vela SNR is often overlooked by astrophotographers, so please enjoy my view of this extraordinary target!

The data was taken at a rural dark site in country Victoria -Australia, using Voyager.

Vela SNR in HaO3LRGB

Capture Details

TelescopeTakahashi TOA 130 with TOA-35 Reducer
CameraQSI 6162 WSG8
MountIoptron CEM70G
FiltersChroma LRG&B, 5nm Ha, 3nm O3
Guiding CameraStarlight Xpress Lodestar X2
Integration time (Exposure)21.0 hrs
LocationKilmore, Victoria, Australia
DateJan, 2023

About this Nebula

My 10th visit to the amazing Vela supernova remnant, it seems there’s always something new there for us Astrophotographers to image!
Here I’m presenting a rarely imaged portion of the SNR for your viewing pleasure, taken at a dark site near the rural town of Kilmore, central Victoria, Australia.
much gratitude to my Astro buddy Blue for his kind assistance with data capture at his property.

The Vela Supernova Remnant featured in this image is immersed in this region at a distance of about 900 light years away. Laced with intertwining filaments and loops of excited oxygen (blue) and both filamentary and more diffuse hydrogen (red), the Vela SNR originated with the explosion of another massive star sometime between 11,000 and 12,300 years ago. The continued ionization of these filaments so long after that explosion probably results from prodigious ultraviolet radiation emitted by Gamma2 Vel and perhaps other OB stars in its proximity.

These shock waves plough through interstellar space at over 500,000 kilometres per hour. Initially, the shock waves were moving at millions of kilometres per hour but have slowed considerably, sweeping up surrounding interstellar material. The image shows blue-green from oxygen emission and red/magenta from hydrogen emission, which has been expanding ever since. The ejected material expanded into the surrounding interstellar medium at incredibly high speeds and temperatures, ionizing gas and causing it to glow, not only in optical wavelengths shown in the image but also in X-Ray and Radio wavelengths. The bluish-green tendril structures shown in the image are the shock fronts from this interaction.

Eventually, these features will dissipate as they expand and cool. The Vela SNR is likely embedded in a larger and older supernova remnant, the Gum Nebula.

… and I think it looks pretty chaotic!

Chaos in Vela

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Where’s the kaboom? There was supposed to be an Earth-Shattering Kaboom!”

- Marvin the Martian