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Rho Ophiuchi cloud complex

Classification: Dark Nebula / IC4603-4-5-6 / vdB107 / M4 / Sh2-9
Constellation: Ophiuchus (OPH) & Scorpius (SCO)
Object Location: Ra 16h m 24s Dec -25° 26’
Size & Distance: 4.5° x 6.5° Apx 500 light years

Date & Location: 05-22-2012 Little Blair Valley, CA
Exposure: LRGB L= 2 @ 5 min, RGB= 3 ea. @ 5 min. All (bin 2x2)
Optics: Nikon 180ed lens open to f/4
Mount: Astro-Physics 900 GTO / ATS 10x36 pier.
Camera: SBIG-STL6303E @-20c Guided by TV60 / SBIG-RGH
Filters: Astrodon G2 LRGB
Software: MaxImDL 4.56, Photoshop CS5

Notes: Sky conditions: Good seeing, Light wind, Temp 60°
Image Field of view is apx 5.8° x 8.7°

The Rho Ophiuchi cloud complex is a dark nebula of gas and dust that is located 1° south of the star ρ Ophiuchi of the constellation Ophiuchus. This cloud is one of the closest star-forming regions to the Solar System.
The cloud covers an angular area of 4.5° × 6.5° on the celestial sphere. It consists of two major regions of dense gas and dust. Some of the structures within the complex appear to be the result of a shock front passing through the clouds from the direction of the neighboring Sco OB2 association.