Another image taken in July 2014. This time I was collecting narrowband Ha (H-alpha) data on the Elephants Trunk Nebula within the larger emission nebula region of IC 1396.

I feel the most extraordinary thing about this image is that it was taken from within a regional area consisting of 3 cities (population of 500,000), lots of light pollution and the night I was imaging this it was hazy – you could hardly see the stars of Cygnus or Cassiopeia, and definitely not the stars of Cepheus! Yet look how H-alpha filters allow you to cut through all that and still enjoy astro-imaging.

This data will be combined with additional narrowband data (yet to be taken) that will be taken through OIII (Oxygen 3) and S2 (Sulphur 2) filters. The Ha, OIII and S2 filters/data will produce what is known as a Hubble palette image. A false colour representation of the various components within the nebula and region of space it occupies.

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Ic 1396 city astrophotography
This is another image I took back in 2010 of IC 1396 the Elephant Trunk. It was taken from my home backyard in Kitchener (a fairly light polluted city) in October of that year. Imaged with a modified Canon DSLR 350xt and Skywatcher Equinox 80MM ED refractor.

The Elephants Trunk Nebula is part of the larger region known as IC 1396 that is located in the constellation of Cepheus which is well positioned for astrophotographers in the NE sky in July/August and high over-head around 2am. Cepheus is situated between Cygnus and Cassiopeia constellations. IC 1396 and the Elephants Trunk nebula are about 2400 light years from Earth.


  • William Optics Zenithstar APO Refractor
  • SBIG 8300M CCD with FLI CFW, H-alpha 7nm filter
  • Calibration, align, stack in Pixinsight.
  • Processing in Pixinsight
  • 100 minutes data
  • Location: Kitchener, Ontario

Hope you enjoy this image. Please feel free to share it and also leave a comment below.

#Clear skies!


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