Picture of a "naked eye" nova in Scorpius
V1280 SCORPII - Nova Sco 2007
 Copyright 2007, Dick Locke.  All Rights Reserved.  Contact and Image Use Information 

The Telescope points to the Nova

The nova is "V1280" nova in Scorpius the scorpion, taken 2/17/07 at 4:14 a.m., a day after it's peak.

Alternate Version

I was aware of early reports of a dramatic brightening of a recently discovered nova in Scorpius thanks to the timely email of some Houston-area astronomy club members .  I was fortunate enough to be in Wimberly, TX, shooting astronomy pictures near its peak brightness.  The nova was easy to see naked-eye as Scorpius rose in the east, a few hours before sunrise.  The skies were vg to excellent, which helped as the target low in the sky.  According to "The Sky" my short 15 second exposure caught stars as dim as magnitude 7.24 on the original, full size image.  Sky and Tel is saying the nova peaked at mag 3.8 the day before, Friday 2/16/2007.  So no matter how you slice it this was within a day or so of the peak!

Jupiter is shining at mag -2 above the telescope in the picture above, and Antares is also labeled.

Nikon D200 Camera, Nikon VR 18-200mm lens set to 26mm operating at f4.5, 15 second exposure ISO 1600 (with in camera noise reduction) while the camera sat on my telescope chair!  I was out of tripods as I had star trails going on the others.

More info on the nova here.  An APOD of the nova here.

Other Pictures from this trip are here.


Cool pictures from Scorpius area:  Antares Area, Prime Focus

Astronomy Pictures: Dick Locke's Astrophoto Gateway page....

Copyright 2007 Dick Locke.  All Rights Reserved.
Contact and Image Use Information

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