Birth of Cool: Photographers Catch Brilliant Fetus Nebula

NGC 7008 Skywatching
Planetary Nebula, NGC 7008, shines bright blue in this image. Skywatchers Bob and Janice Fera captured this image Aug. 8-11, 15-16, 2012 from Eagle Ridge Observatory, Foresthill, Ca. (Image credit: Bob and Janice Fera)

A cool blue planetary nebula NGC 7008 appears to be resting peacefully in this night sky photo.

Astrophotographers Bob and Janice Fera took this photo August 8-11, 15-16, 2012 from Eagle Ridge Observatory, Foresthill, Ca. The duo used an Officina Stellare RC-360AST 14" f/8 Ritchey Chretien Cassegrain with a two-element field flattener and Apogee Alta U16M CCD Camera with Astrodon Filters. Multiple exposures are made to collect enough light for an image that would otherwise not be evident to the eye.

NGC 7008, also known as the Fetus Nebula, is a planetary nebula  in the constellation Cygnus. The nebula is about 2,800 light-years from Earth. A light-year is the distance light travels in one year, or about 6 trillion miles (10 trillion kilometers). Cygnus is one of the most recognizable constellations located on the periphery of the Milky Way.

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Contributing Writer and Producer

Nina Sen is a freelance writer and producer who covered night sky photography and astronomy for She began writing and producing content for in 2011 with a focus on story and image production, as well as amazing space photos captured by NASA telescopes and other missions. Her work also includes coverage of amazing images by astrophotographers that showcase the night sky's beauty.