IC 5146 - Cocoon Nebula

IC 5146

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Location / Date

Zellerndorf, July und August 2011

Telescope / Mount / Guiding

10" f4,7 Skywatcher Newtonian, Skywatcher NEQ6, Baader MPCC, Lacerta OAG + Mgen

Camera / Exposure

Canon EOS 1000Da, 56 x 15min ISO 200 (total 14h)


Theli, Fitswork, Photoshop


IC 5146 (also Caldwell 19, Sh 2-125, and the Cocoon Nebula) is a reflection and emission nebula in the constellation Cygnus. The NGC description refers to IC 5146 as a cluster of 9.5 mag stars involved in a bright and dark nebula.

The cluster is about 4,000 ly away, and the central star that lights it formed about 100,000 years ago; the nebula is about 12 arcmins across, which is equivalent to a span of 15 light years. When viewing IC 5146, dark nebula Barnard 168 (B168) is an inseparable part of the experience, forming a dark lane that surrounds the cluster and projects westward forming the appearance of a trail behind the Cocoon.

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