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Astr110 Photography Projects, Spring 2010

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NGC3242, Jessica Naylor-Tatterson

NGC3242

The Ghost of Jupiter is a planetary nebula that was discovered by William Herchel in the 1700s. Because it was discovered in a time when telescopes were not very strong, this planetary nebula appeared to look a lot like other gas-like planets such as Saturn or Jupiter. The outer layer of gas appears to be about the same size as the planet Jupiter, which is why this specific name was given. A planetary nebula is actually the death of a low-mass star. As the star runs out of hydrogen and helium they expel these gases into their outer atmosphere and a planetary nebula is created.

The Ghost of Jupiter is composed of three identifiable layers of gas. The most inner nebula is bright and dense, it often appears almost white, this part of the nebula is referred to as the "eye". The inner nebula is surrounded by a more faint layer of gas that appears as a green color, this middle layer is further enveloped by a final outer layer which is more faint yet and about the size of the planet Jupiter.The distance of the nebula is estimated to be between 1,400 to 2,500 light years away (I have chosen to do my calculations based on 2,000 light years). The estimated angular size of this image is about 20 arcminutes and the linear size of the object is around 11.627

 

References:
Hartmut Frommert-"Spider"

http://seds.org/~spider/spider/Misc/n3242.html

NASA.gov- Galaxy Evolution Explorer

http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/galex/galex-20090403.html

Right Ascension (J2000) 10:25:20
Declination (J2000) -18:41:20
Filters used blue(B), green(V), red(R), and clear(C)
Exposure time per filter 300 seconds
Date observed

March 3, 2010