vdB 152 / LDN 1217 – Wolf’s Cave Nebula

vdB 152 / LDN 1217

The Wolf's Cave Nebula

A ghostly apparition


Described as a “dusty curtain”, mysterious reflection nebula VdB 152 really is very faint. Far from your neighborhood on this Halloween Night, the cosmic phantom is nearly 1,400 light-years away. Also catalogued as Ced 201, it lies along the northern Milky Way in the royal constellation Cepheus. Near the edge of a large molecular cloud, pockets of interstellar dust in the region block light from background stars or scatter light from the embedded bright star giving parts of the nebula a characteristic blue color. Ultraviolet light from the star is also thought to cause a dim reddish luminescence in the nebular dust. Though stars do form in molecular clouds, this star seems to have only accidentally wandered into the area, as its measured velocity through space is very different from the cloud’s velocity.

The Wolf's Cave Nebula in Cepheus


Technical card


ObjectvdB 152 / LDN 1217
Imaging telescopesCelestron Rowe-Ackermann Schmidt Astrograph 11″
Imaging cameraQHY268M
Mount iOptron CEM60
GuidingSkywatcher Evoguide 50ED, QHY174M
FilterBaader 3.5 nm f/2 H-Alpha, Baader R, G, B (50mm²), Baader SLOAN g’, r’ ,i’, UHC-L, IDAS LPS P2
AccessoriesBaader UFC, Baader UFC-Tilter,  Celestron Focus Motor for SCT
Integration70.3 hours (H-alpha: 645×120″, Luminance: 1148×60″, RGB: 565×90″, SLOAN g’,r’,i’: 1215×60″)
Dates of recording22 nights between May 2023 and July 2023


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