NGC 2024 (the Flame Nebula) is a bright emmission nebula in the constellation Orion.  It is about 900 to 1,500 light-years away.  The bright star Alnitak (ζOri), the easternmost star in the Belt of Orion, shines energetic ultraviolet light into the Flame and this knocks electrons away from the great clouds of hydrogen gas that reside there. Much of the glow results when the electrons and ionized hydrogen recombine. Additional dark gas and dust lies in front of the bright part of the nebula and this is what causes the dark network that appears in the center of the glowing gas.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meade 14 LX200GPS @ f/2.0 (Hyperstar with IR/UV filter)

Meade DSI III Pro, 20 X 30 sec

16 Feb 08, 21:16 to 21:26 hrs

80mm Orion f/11.3 guidescope with Meade DSI II Color 5 sec exposures/corrections
Stacked in Registax, processed in PhotoShop
Wishing Star Observatory

 

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