Located roughly 6,400 light-years away in the constellation Orion, lies NGC 2174, The Monkey Head Nebula.

It’s a Hydrogen- II emission nebula that may have been formed by the gravitational collapse of interstellar dust that form stars by a hierarchical collapse.

 The Nebula gets its name due to its shape, but it can be difficult to spot. To put this target into perspective, It’s bigger than the full moon in the night sky! 

On a chilly dark night in February, I set sights on a winter target in the constellation of Orion.

I used a one-shot color astrophotography camera and a dual pass narrowband filter to block out all other unwanted wavelengths of light and light pollution. I collected 91 fames each with 180 seconds of exposure time, stacked and processed them using an astronomical editing software to bring out the gas clouds and nebulosity.

This image was taken from my backyard in Johnston.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Lucas “Luc” Maguire captured this image from his backyard in Johnston. He will be submitting his deep space images to the Sun Rise for publication each week. Maguire’s photography can also be found at his Instagram account @oceanstateastro and his Twitter feed @OceanStateAstro.


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