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ABELL 12 

 PLANETARY NEBULA IN ORION (THE HUNTER)

aka The Hidden Planetary    

(Image centered at: ra 06 h:02 m / dec + 09 39')

 

 

December  - 2023, Home Backyard in Martinez, Buenos Aires, Argentina

 


 

DATA

TYPE: Planetary Nebula

APPARENT DIAMETER: 37 arc minutes

APPARENT MAGNITUDE (V): Abell 12 14 (v)  & m orionis 4,13 (v)

DISTANCE: 6,900 light years

 

IMAGE INFORMATION

INSTRUMENT: 6" ORION OPTICS UK (Ultra Grade Optics) w/Sky Watcher Coma Corrector (0.9x) working at at f4.5

CAMERA: QHY 183 MONO

MOUNT: VIXEN GDPX, OAG with Starlight Xpress Lodestar

FILTERS: BAADER LRGB Set

SKY CONDITIONS: urban skies - Bortle 8

EXPOSURES: LRGB (40,60,40,40,40)

 

OBJECT DESCRIPTION AND IMAGE SESSION

Abell 12 is a small Planetary Nebula in the constellation of Orion. The Nebula is next to 4.31 magnitude star mu (m) orionis. Although from Earth perspective both objects are quite close, mu (m) orionis is 152 light years away while Abell 12 is far beyond at a distance 6,900 light years form us. Although is easy to locate, this pair is quite a challenge even for the experienced observer. That is because Abell 12 is very faint and stands relatively quite close from a 4,31 magnitude star.

Abell 12 shows an outer hydrogen shell which stands out in contrast to the interior blue structure. I was somehow lucky because the spikes of the Newtonian produced by mu (m) orionis did not interfered with Abell 12.

American astronomer George Ogden Abell published a list of planetary nebulae that were discovered on the photographic plates of the Palomar Observatory Sky Survey. Most of them are significantly larger than Abell 12 and usually have a low surface brightness, so this object is an exception among the Abell PN list.