Three emission nebulae in Carina, NGC3603 and NGC3576, 79

Lying approx 3 east of the magnificent Eta Carina Nebula the three emission nebulae (NGC3603 top left, NGC3576 the looped structure lower left and NGC3679 to right) provide the focal point for what is a rather complex mix of stars, star clusters, extensive emission regions and dark dusty molecular clouds that obscure what lies behind. The nebulous arcs of NGC3576 (ca 7,000 ly distant) are suggestive of strong stellar winds from a massive young star, or star cluster hidden within, blowing shells of material back into space.

NGC3603 is more than twice as far away as NGC3576 and contains an unusually rich collection of intrinsically extremely bright Wolf-Rayet stars (the white knot in the image) enveloped in nebulosity. That NGC3603 has a deeper reddish hue is indicative of its greater distance - its light has been significantly reddened by interstellar dust on its journey to us.

 

Camera: SBIG STL11000M Scope: Takahashi TOA-130, f=1000mm, f7.7 (fov ~2.0 x 1.4)
Mount: Takahashi EM-200 Temma2 Guiding: internal
Filters/Exposures: L:Ha:R:G:B = 50:70:20:20:20min3h00m Location: Heathcote, Victoria, Australia
Date: 3rd June 2010 Processing: CCDStack2, MIRA AL8 and Photoshop CS5