The Fires of Alnitak

The Flame Nebula NGC 2024 is a beautiful emission nebula in the Constellation Orion. A broad dust lane nearly bisects the nebula, and a secondary dark lane runs from near the south end of the main rift into the eastern wing. At least a dozen stars of magnitude 10 to 12 are embedded in the nebula.
The Flame is about 900 light-years away, and part of the Orion Molecular Complex, a star-forming region that includes the famous Horsehead Nebula. NGC 2024 is ionized and made to luminesce by the easternmost star in Orion’s Belt, Alnitak (ζ Ori) and glows in a variety of colors, from yellow to orange, though the predominant hue is shell-pink.

Imaged 27 November 2014 at 0400 (yes … I know), Canon 7D prime focused through Celestron CPC 9.25 at ISO 2500, 32 frames stacked in DSS for a total 13min exposure (25 sec/frame)


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