The Cone Nebula and Christmas Tree Cluster

This is the Cone Nebula and Christmas Tree Cluster, NGC2264, located in the constellation of Monoceros some 2700 light years from Earth. The nickname “Cone Nebula” comes from the inverted cone shaped structure near the center of this image. The very tip of the cone is a star forming region and the height of the cone is about 7 light years. This image was created with a monochrome (black & white) camera and 3 different narrowband filters. The filters highlight specific gases present in the nebula. The filters used were hydrogen alpha (red), sulphur 2 (deep red), and oxygen 3 (blue/green). This image is over 25 hours of capture time over several nights in southwestern Wisconsin.

Captured by Brian Champion 2024