M78 (NGC 2068) in Orion

The neb­ula Messi­er 78 (also known as M78 or NGC 2068) is a reflec­tion neb­ula in the con­stel­la­tion Ori­on. It was dis­covered by Pierre Méchain in 1780 and included by Charles Messi­er in his cata­log of comet-like objects that same year.

M78 is the bright­est dif­fuse reflec­tion neb­ula of a group of neb­u­lae that include NGC 2064, NGC 2067 and NGC 2071. This group belongs to the Ori­on Molecu­lar Cloud Com­plex and is about 1,600 light years dis­tant from Earth. M78 is eas­ily found in small tele­scopes as a hazy patch and involves two stars of 10th mag­nitude. These two stars, HD 38563A and HD 38563B, are respons­ible for mak­ing the cloud of dust in M78 vis­ible by reflect­ing their light.

About 45 vari­able stars of the T Tauri type, young stars still in the pro­cess of form­a­tion as well as some 17 Herb­ig-Haro objects are known in M78.

[descrip­tion from wikipedia]

Details

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RCOS 14.5″ f/​8
ASA DDM85
Apo­gee U16M
Astro­don Gen2
LRGB 400:200:180:160 min.
ROSA Remote Obser­vat­or­ies South­ern Alps
© Mar­tin Ruster­holz, Astrophotographer

Find­er Chart M78 (NGC 2068) in Orion

M78 Sky Chart - Astrophotography Martin Rusterholz

Image cre­ated by Skychart