Deep Sky Astrophotography by Barry Wilson

Current Projects: (1) Sh2-101 The Tulip Nebula and Cygnus X-1 shockwave

(1) Sh2-101 The Tulip Nebula

Having been inspired by Gendler and Ivan Eder, Steve and I have set out to capture the OIII blue shockwave of Cygnus X-1 and the stunningly beautiful Tulip nebula in this two panel mosaic. We began imaging on 14th May and extended the framing to include the second panel for the arc of the blackhole's shockwave. In addition we have also added data from Steve's image when he first acquired his TEC taken from his home observatory, thus boosting the data in panel 1 (the Tulip itself).

From APOD's commentary to Ivan Eder's superb image: "Framing a bright emission region, this telescopic view looks out along the plane of our Milky Way Galaxy toward the nebula rich constellation Cygnus the Swan. Popularly called the Tulip Nebula, the reddish glowing cloud of interstellar gas and dust is also found in the 1959 catalog by astronomer Stewart Sharpless as Sh2-101. About 8,000 light-years distant and 70 light-years across the complex and beautiful nebula blossoms at the center of this composite image. Ultraviolet radiation from young energetic stars at the edge of the Cygnus OB3 association, including O star HDE 227018, ionizes the atoms and powers the emission from the Tulip Nebula. HDE 227018 is the bright star near the center of the nebula. Also framed in the field of view is microquasar Cygnus X-1, one of the strongest X-ray sources in planet Earth's sky. Driven by powerful jets from a black hole accretion disk, its fainter visible curved shock front lies above and right, just beyond the cosmic Tulip's petals."

Data acquisition: Barry Wilson & Steve Milne

Processing: Barry Wilson

TEC140; 10 Micron GM2000HPS II UP; QSI690wsg-8; Astrodon filters; 3nm Ha 69 x 1200s; OIII 64 x 1200s; SII 48 x 1200s; 60.3 hrs total integration. E-Eye Extremadura, Spain. May to July 2019.

Data acquisition: Barry Wilson & Steve Milne. Processing: Barry Wilson


I have been fascinated with astronomy since childhood ever since I read Patrick Moore's "The Observer's Book of Astronomy" and became a devotee of BBC's "The Sky at Night". This website aims to display what can be achieved by an amateur astrophotographer in their backgarden - Totnes, Devon, UK, in my case - equiped with dedication, patience and perseverance, especially from my family!  I also share a remote observatory in Spain with Steve Milne, equiped with our own equipment, setup by ourselves and jointly operated and controlled.

Clear Skies!

Barry Wilson

© Barry Wilson 2019.

All images on this website are not to be reproduced or used without permission.

Nebulae images

IC 2177 The Seagull Nebula

IC 2177 The Seagull Nebula

This is a 'work in progress' image as we gather the data for a HOORGB image which will take a couple of seasons to gather the necessary data. The four panels have the minimum data really to produce this test image and we do in fact have two further panels for a row across the bottom of the image but as yet no data! This target is low even at e-Eye's latitude and so imaging in the turbulent lower atmosphere we are relieved to see little distortion and refraction effects on the RGB channels for the stars.

I have wanted to image this very pretty target for some time and am delighted we have persevered sufficiently for an HaRGB image. So I am pleased to add my version to the many fine Seagull (or Parrot) Nebula images posted recently.

From Wikipedia: "C 2177 is a region of nebulosity that lies along the border between the constellations Monoceros and Canis Major. It is a roughly circular H II region centered on the Be star HD 53367. This nebula was discovered by Welsh amateur astronomer Isaac Roberts and was described by him as "pretty bright, extremely large, irregularly round, very diffuse." The name Seagull Nebula is sometimes applied by amateur astronomers to this emission region, although it more properly includes the neighboring regions of star clusters, dust clouds and reflection nebulae. This latter region includes the open clusters NGC 2335 and NGC 23."

Tak FSQ106; 10 Micron GM1000HPS; QSI683wsg-8; Astrodon filters; Ha 36 x 1200s; RGB 24 x 600s each channel each panel; 28 hrs total integration. E-Eye Extremadura, Spain. January to February 2019.

Data acquisition: Barry Wilson & Steve Milne.
Processing: Barry Wilson.