NGC 2359 commonly known as Thor’s Helmet. This bubble shaped emission nebula also has some complex filaments that help to give NGC 2359 a distinctive shape with the wing like structures to give Thor’s Helmet its name. Located in the constellation of Canis Major, it is nearly 15,000 light years distant and 30 light years across. This nebula contains winds of ionised material and unionised gas generated from the central Wolf-Rayet star, an extremely hot giant star in a brief pre-supernova stage of evolution. The blue green colour of the nebula comes from oxygen atoms glowing in the dust.
Taken using the iTelescope network with a 16″ fast Newtonian and an Apogee Aspen CCD. The image is comprised of 5 x 120 second Luminance, 3 x each of R, G, B at 120 seconds each and stacked together in CCDStack. ©Nick Cook