Beautiful Astrophoto: Zoom Into Orion

Here’s an awesome sequence of images from skyscape photographer Miguel Claro. These images were captured from Cape Espichel, Sesimbra, Portugal, about 40 km away from Lisbon. This triple sequence poster contains a beautiful widefield view of the well-known winter constellations visible from the northern hemisphere; then a zoom in to focus on Orion; then Claro zooms in even more to find the Great Orion Nebula M42 and M43.

Claro took a single shot for each image with a DSLR camera, using between 10, 35 and 300 mm. “To do this work I´ve used the incredible Vixen Polarie mounting travel, to avoid the Earth rotation, and a Canon 60Da, a camera sensitive to the infrared/H-alpha wavelengths,” Claro said.

Below is an annotated version of the different objects in the image:

An annotated poster with a progression of images from Cape Espichel, Sesimbra in Portugal. Left is a wide field starscape, center is Orion's deep sky objects and right is a closeup of M42. Credit and copyright: Miguel Claro.
An annotated poster with a progression of images from Cape Espichel, Sesimbra in Portugal. Left is a wide field starscape, center is Orion’s deep sky objects and right is a closeup of M42. Credit and copyright: Miguel Claro.

You can see these images and more at Claro’s website, http://miguelclaro.com/

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SOFIA Opens New Window on Star Formation in Orion

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SOFIA’s mid-infrared image of Messier 42 (right) with comparison images of the same region made at other wavelengths by the Hubble Space Telescope (left) and European Southern Observatory (middle). (Credits: Visible-light image: NASA/ESA/HST/AURA/STScI/O’Dell & Wong; Near-IR image: ESO/McCaughrean et al.; Mid-IR image: NASA/DLR/SOFIA/USRA/DSI/FORCAST Team)

From a NASA Press Release:

A mid-infrared mosaic image from the Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, or SOFIA, offers new information about processes of star formation in and around the nebula Messier 42 in the constellation Orion. The image data were acquired using the Faint Object Infrared Camera for the SOFIA Telescope, or FORCAST, by principal investigator Terry Herter, of Cornell University during SOFIA’s Short Science 1 observing program in December 2010.
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