Focal Pointe Observatory
Astrophotography by Bob Franke

Recent Images
   Natural Color
   Narrow Band
Solar System
Tips & Tricks
Published Images
My Freeware
Local Weather


Send Email














The Cone Nebula (NGC 2264)

       Click the full screen zoom button           ^
Click the image to Zoom and Pan 

Click here to view the image without Zoomify (1200 x 1800 - 590 KB)

Click here for a landscape view without Zoomify (1800 x 1200 - 590 KB)





12.5" RCOS @  ~f/9 (2880 mm fl) 0.64 arcsec / pixel.  The Zoomify image scale is 1.37 to 3.28 arcsec / pixel.


Paramount ME


SBIG STL-11000 w/ internal filter wheel, AstroDon Gen II Filters.

Acquisition Data

11/22/2011 to 2/21/2012 Chino Valley, AZ... with CCDAutoPilot3 & CCDSoft.  AOL guided


SII  810 min (27 x 30 min. bin 1x1)

Ha   690 min (23 x 30 min, bin 1x1)

OIII 570 min (19 x 30 min, bin 1x1)

Lum 435 min (27 x 15 min, bin 1x1)

RGB 450 min (10 x 15 min each, bin 2x2)

SII, Ha & OIII are mapped to RGB respectively and LRGB is added with 35% opacity.

Click here for the RGB color image.

Click here for an Ha filtered b/w image.


  • CCDSoft, CCDStack, Photoshop CS w/ the Fits Liberator plugin, Noel Carboni's actions and and Russell Croman's GradientXTerminator.

  • PixFix32 (pre-beta) to repair column defects.

  • CCDStack to calibrate, register, normalize, data reject,  combining the sub exposures.

  • PhotoShop for RGB combine and non-linear stretching

  • Noiseware Pro, a PhotoShop plug-in.


North is to the top.

The Cone Nebula, located about 2700 light years away, was discovered by William Herschel on December 26, 1785. Features in the image include red emission from diffuse interstellar hydrogen and wispy filaments of dark dust. The dark Cone Nebula region clearly contains much dust which blocks light from the emission nebula and open cluster NGC 2264 behind it. One hypothesis holds that the Cone Nebula is formed by wind particles from an energetic source blowing past the Bok Globule at the head of the cone.

This false color image was acquired using the Hubble Palette, where SII, Ha and OIII filters mapped to the RGB channels respectively. The colors were then modified to show the popular gold and turquoise motif.