The Cone Nebula

Click on image for larger version.

The Cone Nebula is located at the southern end of star cluster NGC 2264, in Monoceros. It is a column of dark dust, six lightyears long, near some of the newly-formed hot blue stars of the cluster.

This object parallels the dust pillars seen in the Eagle Nebula, where regions of thick dust and gas resist being cleared away by the intense ultraviolet radiation from young giant stars. The edge of the column, especially the tip, is bright with red light from ionized hydrogen.

This nebula and the cluster that illuminates it are about 2600 lightyears away.


20in RC Optical Systems telescope operating at f/8.4
Paramount ME Robotic Telescope Mount
SBIG ST10XME CCD camera with color filter wheel

L R G B color production was used to create this image.

Luminance = 75 minutes binned 1x1
Red = 20 minutes binned 2x2
Green = 20 minutes binned 2x2
Blue = 20 minutes binned 2x2

Minimum credit line: Michael Gariepy/Adam Block/NOAO/AURA/NSF

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Updated: 02/16/2004