NGC1499 The California Nebula - 11.03 & 11.04  2005

Image Capture Details

Optics:  Televue TV 60 IS
Mount: Meade
Camera: Canon Digital Rebel
Filters: Orion SkyGlow
Exposure:  17 X 240 Seconds = 68 Minutes
Time: 11pm - 12:30am
Location: Waldwick, NJ
The California Nebula NGC 1499

was discovered by E.E. Barnard in about 1884-5, just in time to have it added in Dreyer's NGC.   Under very dark skies, it can just be glimpsed with
the naked eye. Because of its low surface brightness, it is not much easier when visually observed in telescopes. Instead, this nebula is a great
target for astrophotographers.

NGC 1499 is probably illuminated by Xi Persei, a hot blue-white main sequence star. This star belongs to an association of young stars which
probably arose from this interstellar cloud, the Perseus OB2 association. It is the hottest star of this association. Situated 0.6 deg S of the California
Nebula is the brightest star of Per OB2, Zeta Persei, a B1 Ib white supergiant which shines at mag 2.83. At its distance of about 1000 lightyears; this
corresponds to the luminosity of 6300 suns like ours, or an absolute magnitude of -4.7. This star has an annual proper motion of 0.02" and is
receding from us at about 20 km/s, and probably a remote physical companion.

© 2007 David A. Trapani
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