This is the Owl Nebula (M97=NGC 3587). A Planetary Nebula is an exploded star, it is a shell of gas that glows, accompanied by various intricate patterns. They contain stars, though not always visible. They have a lifetime of a few thousands of years. Planetary Nebula's play a vital role in the chemical evolution of the galaxy.
M97, NGC 3597 is circular in shape, and at the center it has a blue star, indicating that it is still very hot. Hot stars emit ultraviolet light. This light is invisible to our eyes, but it is what makes the nebula glow.
It has a 9.9 magnitude, a distance of 2.6 Kilo Light Year (KLY), and an apparent dimension of 3.4x3.3 (arc min). This is one of the four Planetary Nebular in the Messier Catalog. It is located in the constellation Ursa Major. Its dynamical age is about 6000 years old.
Rannals, Lee. "What Controls The Spectacular And Symmetric Appearance Of Material Flung Into Space." Aging Stars Sculpt Spectacular Shape Of Planetary Nebula. N.p., 08 Nov. 2012. Web. 08 Nov. 2012. <http://www.redorbit.com/news/space/1112728276/space-planetary-nebula-binary-stars-very-large-telescope-110812/>.
"Messier 97." Messier Object 97. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Dec. 2012.
|Right Ascension (J2000)||11:14:47.69'|
|Filters used||B (Blue), R (Red), V (Green)|
|Exposure time per filter||B(120s), V(60s), and R (60s)|
|Date observed||November 23, 2012|