The Double Cluster & Comet Hartley 2

Thursday, October 7 - Friday, October 8, 2010
11:45 pm - 12:06 am EDT
CAMERA: Canon 550D (Hutech modified)
15 minutes (10 30 seconds @ ISO 800, 10  1 minute @ ISO 800)
Okie-Tex Star Party (Camp Billy Joe located near Kenton, Oklahoma)
Astro-Tech 8" f/4 Imaging Newtonian (with Baader Coma Corrector)
MOUNT: Celestron CGEM Computerized Mount
GUIDING: Orion 70mm Refractor and Orion StarShoot AutoGuider
Images acquired with Nebulosity 2. Registered, aligned, stacked, bias and dark frame subtracted with Deep Sky Stacker.  Further processing done with Adobe Photoshop CS3 (using Noel Carboni's Astronomy Tools), GradientXTerminator, and Noise Ninja 2.
The cluster on the far left is NGC 884 and is 7,500 light-years from Earth.  NGC 869, right of center, is "slightly" closer at 7,200 light-years. These two cluster make up the famous Double Cluster in Perseus. At this time, in early October 2010, the clusters were visited by 103P/Hartley or Comet Hartley 2. This little chunk of ice and rock was MUCH closer - a mere 13 million miles or 0.000002 light-years!