The prominent star in the image above is Antares, which is the bright reddish star in the constellation of Scorpius. Antares is a huge [700 times the diameter of the sun] star and is only about 600 light years away from us. Antares is also unusual becaure it is surrounded by a yellowish reflection nebula which astronomers believe is composed of material ejected from the star which then reflects the star's yellow-red light.
Also seen in this image are the much more distant globular clusters Messier 4 [the larger globular to the right of Antares] and NGC 6144.
July 13, 2010
18 minutes for each RGB color channel for a total exposure time of 54 minutes.
Mt. Laguna, San Diego County, California
Optics - Takahashi E-160 at f/3.3
Mount - Astro-Physics 1200GTO
Camera - SBIG STL-11000M