IC63 and IC59

These objects are faint emission and reflection nebulae. The blue components of the nebulae is caused by reflection from the bright star in the image (Gamma Cas.) The red components of the image are caused by emission of hot gas again heated by the outflow of Gamma Cas.

Gamma Cassiopeiae, which varies in brightness from magnitude 1.6 to 3.0, is located the the middle of the Cassiopeia asterism and is shown as the brightest star in the image below. Although Gamma is a bright star, it has no Arabic or Latin name. It does, however, have the nickname of “Navi”. Virgil Ivan Gus Grissom, the second astronaut in space for the United States, named this star after his own middle name spelled backwards. Gamma, or Navi, was used for celestial navigation because it was easy to find and identify visually.

IC63 and IC59 co-ordinates:

Emission, Reflection Nebulae
Size:10′ x 5′, 10′ x 3′
Constellation: Cassiopeia
RA: 0h 56m 34s, 0h 59m 34s
Dec: +61 3′ 29″, +60 48′ 29


The Image above is a combination of  12,  10 minute exposures at -20. The images were Dark subtracted and aligned in Nebulosity. The initial image processing was performed in Nebulosity including power level stretches and. The final image was processed in Photoshop using layers to enhance the nebulosity whilst maintaining the level of Gamma Cas.

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