Michael Sidonio: Sharpless 63 - Barnard's Galaxy Ghost (SH2-63) Poster
Michael Sidonio: Sharpless 63 - Barnard's Galaxy Ghost (SH2-63) Poster
Michael Sidonio: Sharpless 63 - Barnard's Galaxy Ghost (SH2-63) Poster
Michael Sidonio: Sharpless 63 - Barnard's Galaxy Ghost (SH2-63) Poster
Michael Sidonio: Sharpless 63 - Barnard's Galaxy Ghost (SH2-63) Poster
Michael Sidonio: Sharpless 63 - Barnard's Galaxy Ghost (SH2-63) Poster
Michael Sidonio: Sharpless 63 - Barnard's Galaxy Ghost (SH2-63) Poster

Michael Sidonio: Sharpless 63 - Barnard's Galaxy Ghost (SH2-63) Poster

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Sharpless 63: The Barnard's Galaxy Ghost (SH2-63) by Michael Sidonio

In the top right of this image and located in Sagittarius, Barnards Galaxy, or NGC 6822, is a barred irregular galaxy about 1.6 Million light years away. It is part of our local group of galaxies and relatively small at just 7000 light years diameter.

It has prominent HII and OIII emission nebulae and although often not revealed in images, NGC 6822 also sits behind an extensive foreground field of very faint Milky Way cirrus dust.

The strange ghostly feature lower left in this image is Sharpless 63 which is much closer to us at 700 light years and is part of the extensive molecular cloud MBM 159.

Photo details & setup

Data collected over 2 nights: 2 and 6 August 2019

  • Takahashi FSQ106EDX4
  • FLI Proline 16803, CFW-5-7, Robofocus
  • LHaOIIIRGB = 360,75,75,60,60,60 = 11.5 hrs total exposure (bin 1X1)
  • New Deep-Sky RGB Astronomik filters
  • -30C chip temp, dark frames and flats (using Aurora Flat Field Panel) applied
  • Focal length 530mm, FOV = 4deg X 4deg
  • Image scale 3.5"/pix
  • Guide Camera: Starlight Xpress Lodestar

Michael Sidonio, also known as "Strongmanmike," is a well-known Australian amateur astronomer and astrophotographer with a background in strength athletics. He studied astronomy at Dickson College and worked at the Canberra Observatory for over a decade. After retiring from strongman competitions in 2005, Michael focused on astronomy and astrophotography. His work has been featured in various exhibitions worldwide and has won numerous awards.

Michael has made significant contributions to astronomy research, including discovering a galaxy 11 million light-years away. His astrophotography is displayed at Australia's National Science and Technology Centre in Canberra. Michael recently completed the construction of the highest astronomical observatory in Australia, located in the Tinderry Mountains.


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