Geckzilla.com - Art by Judy Schmidt
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IC 1454 (2013)

I have to say that as far as Hubble exposures of planetary nebulas go, IC 1454 is not the most visually rewarding. I’ve searched for some amateur astrophotography pictures and it seems a bit better suited for that. It’s big and diffuse and pretty blurry up close. It also seems somewhat faint.

Anyway, the data had a fairly low s/n ratio but I figured I’d try it anyway. I used to hate the median filter but I’m beginning to see some merits to it in certain situations. It definitely helped smooth out the noise without destroying details, which I masked off, retaining the integrity of the little stars and that smudge which I believe is a background galaxy.

There are some neat planetary nebulas which are simply perfect round circles or bubbles but they are usually too big to fit on a single WFPC2 exposure. By dumb luck it seems this one wasn’t quite aimed correctly on the first attempt which resulted in me being able to create a slightly more complete picture of it.

Red: hst_07501_10_wfpc2_f658n_pc_sci + hst_07501_10_wfpc2_f658n_wf_sci + hst_07501_60_wfpc2_f658n_pc_sci + hst_07501_60_wfpc2_f658n_wf_sci
Green:hst_07501_10_wfpc2_f555w_pc_sci + hst_07501_10_wfpc2_f555w_pc_sci + hst_07501_60_wfpc2_f555w_pc_sci + hst_07501_60_wfpc2_f555w_wf_sci
Blue: hst_07501_10_wfpc2_f502n_pc_sci + hst_07501_10_wfpc2_f502n_wf_sci + hst_07501_60_wfpc2_f502n_pc_sci + hst_07501_60_wfpc2_f502n_wf_sci

North is NOT up, it’s 36.5° degrees counter-clockwise from up.

Copyright information:
Hubble data is public domain, but I put a lot of work into combining it into beautiful color images. The minimal credit line should read: NASA / ESA / J. Schmidt

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.