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Astr110 Photography Projects, Spring 2005

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Crab Nebula, Jonathan Bergman

Crab Nebula

This is the Crab Nebula (M1) which is seen in the Taurus constellation. It was discovered in 1758 by Charles Messier. The Crab Nebula is a cloud of gas created by the explosion of a star. This explosion, called a supernova, was observed by Chinese astronomers on July 4, 1054 AD. They noted that this new light in the sky was visible in daylight for 6 days, and at night it was visible for 653 days. This is one of only a few historically observed supernovae in our galaxy.

The gas shown here is expanding so rapidly that we can see changes when comparing current photographs to ones taken earlier this century. The Crab Nebula is about 6000 light years from earth and is about 8.72 light years across.



Messier Object Index

Crab Nebula

Right Ascension (J2000) 5:34:30
Declination (J2000) +22:01:00
Filters used blue(B), green(V), red(R), and clear(C)
Exposure time per filter

60 seconds in B, 30 seconds in CVR

Date observed

March 9, 2005 (BR)
March 10, 2005 (V)
April 11, 2005 (C)