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IC 5070 – The Pelican Nebula

The Pelican Nebula is a large emission nebula in the constellation Cygnus.  Cataloged as IC 5070 and IC 5067, this nebula lies right next to the North America Nebula.   In the summer of 2015, I photographed the Pelican Nebula using an Explore Scientific ED80 telescope and Canon DSLR camera.

Pelican Nebula

IC 5070 – The Pelican Nebula in Cygnus

IC 5070 – The Pelican Nebula

This is a fantastic astrophotography target, especially using a modified DSLR camera and a wide field telescope.  The photo above utilizes only broadband RGB images, taken from a dark sky location.

This region boasts significant details in the H-Alpha wavelength, so using a DSLR Ha filter would capture some excellent luminance detail.  The active mix of young star formation and evolving gas mean that the Pelican Nebula will eventually change in appearance over millions of years.

Astrophotography Details

The rich hues of pink and red were coaxed out by boosting the saturation of the image in Adobe Photoshop.  The stars were reduced significantly to showcase the delicate details of the dark dust found in this nebula.

Reviewing images in Adobe Bridge

Reviewing images in Adobe Bridge

The details of my experience are outlined in this post from July 2015.  Astronomy at Ontario Campgrounds.


Equipment and Exposure Details


Telescope: Explore Scientific ED80 with WO Flat III 0.8x FR/FF
Mount: Skywatcher HEQ5 Pro Synscan
Guiding: Meade DSI Pro II and PHD Guiding
Guide Scope: Orion Mini 50mm
Camera: Canon EOS 450D (Modified)
ISO: 1600
Total Exposure: 1 hour, 50 Minutes (22 x 300s)
Processing Software: Deep Sky Stacker, Photoshop CC
 Support Files: 15 darks