Spitzer California Nebula Mosaic

Spitzer_ssc2020-10a_1024

spitzer_ssc2020-10a April 17th, 2020

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

This series of image taken by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope on Jan. 25, 2020, shows part of the California Nebula, which is located about 1,000 light-years from Earth. This is the final mosaic taken by the mission before it was decommissioned on Jan. 30, 2020.

Spitzer's infrared detectors reveal the presence of warm dust, similar to soot, mixed in with the gas. The dust absorbs visible and ultraviolet light from nearby stars and then re-emits the absorbed energy as infrared light.

The image displays Spitzer's observations much the way that research astronomers would view them: From 2009 to 2020, Spitzer operated two detectors simultaneously that imaged adjacent areas of the sky. The detectors captured different wavelengths of infrared light (referred to by their physical wavelength): 3.6 micrometers (shown in cyan) and 4.5 micrometers (shown in red). Different wavelengths of light can reveal different objects or features. Spitzer would scan the sky, taking multiple pictures in a grid pattern, so that both detectors would image the region at the center of the grid. By combining those images into a mosaic, it was possible to see what a given region looked like in multiple wavelengths, such as in the gray-hued part of the image above.

NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., manages the Spitzer Space Telescope mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington. Science operations are conducted at the Spitzer Science Center at the California Institute of Technology, also in Pasadena. Caltech manages JPL for NASA.

Provider: Spitzer Space Telescope

Image Source: http://www.spitzer.caltech.edu/images/6781-ssc2020-10a-Spitzer-California-Nebula-Mosaic

Curator: Spitzer Space Telescope, Pasadena, CA, USA

Image Details

Image Type
Observation
Object Name
California Nebula NGC 1499
Subject - Milky Way
Nebula > Type > Interstellar Medium
Nebula > Appearance > Emission

Distance

Universescale1
1,000 light years
Spitzer_ssc2020-10a_128
 

Position Details

Position (ICRS)
RA = 4h 0m 53.2s
DEC = 36° 20’ 37.2”
Orientation
North is 107.6° CCW
Field of View
33.2 x 19.0 arcminutes
Constellation
Perseus

Color Mapping

  Telescope Spectral Band Wavelength
Cyan Spitzer (IRAC) Infrared (Near-IR) 3.6 µm
Red Spitzer (IRAC) Infrared (Near-IR) 4.5 µm
Spectrum_base
Cyan
Red
Spitzer_ssc2020-10a_1280
×
ID
ssc2020-10a
Subject Category
B.4.1.1   B.4.2.1  
Subject Name
California Nebula, NGC 1499
Credits
NASA/JPL-Caltech
Release Date
2020-04-17
Lightyears
1,000
Redshift
1,000
Reference Url
http://www.spitzer.caltech.edu/images/6781-ssc2020-10a-Spitzer-California-Nebula-Mosaic
Type
Observation
Image Quality
Good
Distance Notes
Facility
Spitzer, Spitzer
Instrument
IRAC, IRAC
Color Assignment
Cyan, Red
Band
Infrared, Infrared
Bandpass
Near-IR, Near-IR
Central Wavelength
3600, 4500
Start Time
2020-01-25T09:07, 2020-01-25T09:07
Integration Time
Dataset ID
Notes
Coordinate Frame
ICRS
Equinox
Reference Value
60.221755, 36.343667
Reference Dimension
3317, 1902
Reference Pixel
1659, 951.5
Scale
-1.66667000000000e-04, 1.66667000000000e-04
Rotation
107.55607
Coordinate System Projection:
TAN
Quality
Full
FITS Header
Notes
Creator (Curator)
Spitzer Space Telescope
URL
http://www.spitzer.caltech.edu
Name
Email
Telephone
Address
1200 E. California Blvd.
City
Pasadena
State/Province
CA
Postal Code
91125
Country
USA
Rights
Publisher
Spitzer Science Center
Publisher ID
spitzer
Resource ID
ssc2020-10a.tif
Metadata Date
2020-04-17
Metadata Version
1.1
×

 

Detailed color mapping information coming soon...

×
Universescalefull
1,000 light years