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SpaceTT: Finnish astrophotographer's animated GIF images of Elephants Trunk Nebula are mesmerizing

Check out these stunning animated GIF images of Elephants Trunk Nebula.

@CharlesJGantt
Published Mon, Feb 18 2013 1:11 PM CST   |   Updated Tue, Nov 3 2020 12:24 PM CST

It's no secret - I am a huge astronomy buff. So much so that I even endeavor into the complex realm that is astrophotography. I say "complex" because taking a clear, crisp and vibrant image of the cosmos is quite challenging, and requites many hours to produce a single 2D image.

SpaceTT: Finnish astrophotographer's animated GIF images of Elephants Trunk Nebula are mesmerizing | TweakTown.com

Finnish astrophotographer J-P Mestävainio has taken these complexities and mastered them, but he did not stop there. Mestävainio wondered what the Nebula he was photographing looked like in the third dimension and set out to create what can only be described as breathtaking. Seen below is IC 1396 or the Elephants Trunk Nebula.

[img]2[/img]

These animated GIF images are in all actuality an artist interpretation of how he thinks the nebula would appear if passing by. The GIFs are created by adding interpretations and educated guesses based on the formation of the nebula and a rule-of-thumb that brighter stars are closer than darker ones to known data about the nebula, like distance and the location of certain stars around it to create a 3D model of the nebula.

True 3D images of nebula's are impossible to take from Earth as there is simply not enough difference in POV for us to take the required shots to build a true model from images. Still, these animated GIFs are way cool. If you want to see more of Mestävainio's GIFs check out source #2 below.

A web developer by day, Charles comes to TweakTown after a short break from the Tech Journalism world. Formerly the Editor in Chief at TheBestCaseScenario, he now writes Maker and DIY content. Charles is a self proclaimed Maker of Things and is a major supporter of the Maker movement. In his free time, Charles likes to build just about anything, with past projects ranging from custom PC cooling control systems to 3D printers. Other expensive addictions include Photography, Astronomy and Home Automation.

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