Good morning. It’s November 15, and today’s photo is a Rorschach test.
The image shows the Dark Barnard Nebula 150, which is dark in the sense that the nebula’s thick molecular clouds block light coming from behind it toward Earth. The nebula is located about 1,200 light-years from Earth and can be seen in the constellation Cepheus.
I say it’s a Rorschach test because different people see different things. For example, if you rotate the image 90 degrees counterclockwise, the nebula will look a lot like a seahorse, and indeed, the object is also referred to as the Seahorse Nebula by astronomers.
However, the photographer behind today’s photo, Tom Carrico, has a different explanation. “I showed it that way because I watched too many sci-fi movies,” Carrico told me. “The dark rope-like nebula looks like a leash attached to a human. It is clearly an alien warning.”
Remarkably, Carrico took this image using the RedCat 51 telescope, which has a diameter of just 2 inches (5 cm). He took a total of 78 exposures (6.5 hours total). He says it helped notice the nebulae from very dark skies in eastern Oregon in July.
source: Tom Carrico.
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