The Trifid Nebula M20 is a red emission nebula surrounded by a large blue reflection nebula. The young star cluster at the center lights up the surrounding gas, and the dark patches in front gives the nebula it's characteristic appearance. The distance it not accurately known, but has been estimated between 2200 and 7600 light years.
OPTICS 10" Newtonian f/5.2
MOUNT Homemade equatorial
CAMERA Philips ToUCam Pro SC1 webcam
EXPOSURE 31 x 40s + 37 x 40s
DATE/TIME 01/07/2006 12:46 UTC
LOCATION My backyard observatory in west Auckland, New Zealand