Sh2-240 Spaghetti Nebula | Makrem Larnaout


Astropod | May 5th 2023

Sh2-240, or the Spaghetti Nebula, is an intriguing supernova remnant located within the constellation Taurus. This celestial wonder stretches an impressive 150 light-years across, making it an enticing target for astrophotographers. The intricate web of gas and dust that makes up the Spaghetti Nebula is the result of a massive star that exploded as a supernova around 40,000 years ago. This explosion left behind a complex network of filaments, giving the nebula its unique and mesmerizing appearance. Today, we are excited to showcase a breathtaking image of the Spaghetti Nebula captured by Makrem Larnaout.

The Spaghetti Nebula - SH2 240 | Credit: Makrem Larnaout
The Spaghetti Nebula/Sh2-240 | Credit: Makrem Larnaout

Gear and equipment

  • Imaging Telescope: Samyang 135mm F2.0 ED UMC
  • Imaging Camera: ZWO ASI533MC Pro
  • Mount: Sky-Watcher EQ6-R Pro
  • Filters: Optolong L-eXtreme 2″
  • Accessories: ZWO ASIAIR Pro
  • Software: Adobe Photoshop, Pleiades Astrophoto PixInsight
  • Guiding Telescope: ZWO 30mm Mini Guider Scope
  • Guiding Camera: ZWO ASI120MM

Image acquisition details

The image was taken over two nights on January 28 and 29, 2023. Makrem Larnaout combined a total of 116 frames, each with a 300-second exposure time. The integration time for the final image amounted to 9 hours and 40 minutes. During the acquisition process, the ISO was set to 100 and the focal ratio to f/3.2. The camera was cooled to -10°C to minimize noise, and 1×1 binning was used.

Image processing techniques

Makrem Larnaout used Adobe Photoshop and Pleiades Astrophoto PixInsight to process the image. These powerful tools enabled him to bring out the intricate details of the Spaghetti Nebula while maintaining a natural color balance. The final image showcases the stunning beauty of this celestial object, revealing the delicate filaments of gas and dust in exquisite detail.

Significance of the image

The Spaghetti Nebula is an important object for astronomers as it provides valuable insights into the life cycle of massive stars and the formation of supernova remnants. The intricate filaments and structures within the nebula offer a glimpse into the complex interactions between the expanding shockwave from the supernova explosion and the surrounding interstellar medium. This captivating image highlights the incredible beauty and complexity of the Spaghetti Nebula, inspiring further study and appreciation of this fascinating celestial object.

Astrophotographers like Makrem Larnaout play a critical role in raising awareness about the beauty and importance of these astronomical objects. Through their work, they inspire others to explore the cosmos and gain a deeper understanding of the universe.

Photographer credits

We would like to extend our gratitude to Makrem Larnaout for sharing this spectacular image of the SH2-240 Spaghetti Nebula with us. You can find more of his work on his website, and follow him on social media: Facebook and Instagram.

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