Michael A. Stecker


  Eta Carina Nebula (Key-hole Nebula), NGC 3372
This is one of the most impressive objects in the sky of any type.  It is a southern object in the constellation of Carina that spans about 2 degrees.  The red glowing gas clouds are split by huge dark lanes giving the appearance of a starfish.  The Eta Carina star which illuminates the nebula is an unstable blue supergiant a million times more luminous than our sun.
Photographic Data: An Astrophysics 130 mm f/6 EDF refractor (telecompressed to f/4.5) and 35 mm camera were used with hypersensitized Fujicolor HG 400 film and was centered at RA 10 hrs, 44 min and Declination 59.5 degrees South. Two 50-minute exposures were made from the Carnegie Las Campanas Observatory in Chile. The field of view is 3.4 x 2.2 degrees and north is
to the left.  A composite image was made in the computer.