Messier 42. The Trapezium

Image Copyright: JDrudis, PGardner, Palomar Observatory/CalTech, 2020. Credits: Raw frames: Paul Gardner/Palomar Observatory/CalTech. Processing: Josep Drudis.

Click on the image for a full resolution version



This is an extreme detail of one of the most studied star forming regions that we can find in the sky: the Orion Nebula. Specifically, this image shows the so-called Trapezium area. This area is the brightest region in this difficult object. It was taken with a 60 inch telescope atop Mount Palomar, CA, USA. I want to thank Paul Gardner and the Palomar Observatory for supplying the raw frames for processing. The images taken with the Halpha filter were used as Luminance and not blended with Red, in order to get a better color balance.

A wider field mosaic, taken with a 20 inch telescope can be found here.


Additional Information


Name(s): M42. Trapezium area

Type: Emission Nebula

RA:  05h 35m 16.5s

Dec: -05º 23’ 14”

Constellation: Orion

Size (arcmin): 3×3 arcmin

Magnitude: ND

Distance: 1,400 ly


Date: 2014-02-11

Location: Palomar Mountain, CA, USA

Size (arcmin): 10.4×10.4 arcmin

Telescope: 60” f/8 Ritchey-Chrétien Reflector

Camera: (Brand not stated) 16803 (4096x4096pix)

Guiding: NA

Total exposure: 1 hour (Ha: 3x5min; RGB: 3x5min each)

Processing: CCDStack, Photoshop CC 2020

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