The likeness of a rose appears in this beautiful night sky image of a gaseous star cluster and nebula.
Astrophotographer Josh Knutson captured this photo of the Rosette Nebula from his backyard in Rio Rancho, N.M. on May 27, 2012.
The Rosette Nebula is so named because its clouds of gas and dusts resemble the petals of a rose. The nebula is about 5,000 light years away at the edge of the molecular cloud Monoceros, or the Unicorn constellation. The nebula is a region of the Milky Way filled with glowing gas and a central cluster of hot, young stars that are only a few million years old.
Knutson used a 200mm Celestron SCT at F/2.0, Hyperstar III, and QHY-8 OSC CCD camera to take this photo. The image is made of four hours of five-minute exposures stacked together. Knutson and Salvatore Grasso collaborated on post-processing.
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