Waid Observatory

Object: PuWe 1 - Planetary Nebula in Lynx

Date: Jan. 2023, Feb. 2024  -  Location: Davis Mountains West of Fort Davis, TX
Telescope: 10 inch RC  -  Mount: Paramount-MX  -  Camera: Apogee U8300M
Exposure: Ha = 20x20 min. OIII = 23x20 min. R&G = 20x3 min each B = 21x3 min. - (Bin 2x2)
Click on the image below to view at higher resolution.


PuWe 1


PuWe 1

PuWe 1 (PLN 158+17.1) is a faint planetary nebula discovered by A. Purgathofer and R. Weinberger in May 1980[1].  This celestial object lies on the western edge of the Lynx constellation approximately 1,500 light-years from the Earth[1].  PuWe 1 is very large[3] for a planetary nebula.  It spans an angular diameter of 20 by 20 arcmins[2].  At this size, it is the second largest observable planetary nebula[2] and is only surpassed by the Helix Nebula.  Like all planetary nebulae, PuWe 1 was created when an aging red giant star, near the end of its life, violently expels layers of its atmosphere[3] until only an extremely hot stellar core is left. This stellar ember is known as a white dwarf star. Ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the central white dwarf[3] excites the expelled gas to glow forming the colorful object in the image above.

The above image is orientated with north up and east to the left.  Image integration and processing were accomplished using the software applications PixInsightTM, CCDStackTM, and PhotoshopTM.  The image was assembled by mapping Ha to red and OIII to blue and green.  The stars were overlaid with data from a red, green, and blue filtered image.

1Astronomy.com: https://www.astronomy.com/science/purgathofer-weinberger-1/
2Purgathofer and Weinberger (1980):https://articles.adsabs.harvard.edu/pdf/1980A%26A....87L...5P
3NoirLab: https://noirlab.edu/public/images/noao-puwe1/

Copyright Donald P. Waid