Cassiopeia's Dark Serpent NGC 654

Image Credit & Copyright: Mark Hanson

Description by Mark Hanson

NGC 654 is a brilliant colorful open cluster in the constellation Cassiopeia. It was discovered by William Herschel in 1787. Here is a great paper " from 1960 "Yerkes Observatory" not far from my home here in Madison, Wi.

This deep image shows many more features of this area. The dark serpent shaped area seemingly getting ready to strike the open cluster  NGC 654 are "Lynds Dark Nebula" or LDN objects. These were objects cataloged by Beverly T Lynds in 1962 called "Catalogue of Dark Nebula".  Here we have three LDN objects  1332,1334,1337. Also, TGU H855 P2 another dark nebula.

Next to NGC 654 we have VDB 6 a faint blue reflection nebula.  VDB objects are 158 reflection nebulae cataloged by astronomer Sidney Van Den Bergh.

Taken at "Stellar Winds Observatory" a/k/a Stan Watson Observatory at Dark Sky New Mexico