Object name: GUM85

Designation(s): GUM85,

The Tower of Babble, that is the many catalog names for the same object, got me again. Seems I entered this object on my to-do list twice, once under Gum 85 and once under SH2-54. The result is the computer that decides what to take, when, dutifully took SH2-54 back in August of 2010 and then again in August of 2012 took Gum 85. Processing so many images I didn\'t catch it until I finished the processing. Seeing this version is an improvement over the first I decided to run it. Besides, this was one of the few images taken under rather good skies all of 2012.

Sh2-54/Gum 85 is a huge star-forming region in Serpens Cauda. It is part of the Serpens OB2 Association, a large star-forming region. I couldn\'t find any distance for it but most consider it related to the open star cluster NGC 6604 (a couple degrees out of my frame). That does seem to have a good distance measurement of 5,500 light-years based on Hipparcos and other sources. Though I\'ve found a very wide range on the net these seem to be based on older, less accurate measurements. For more on this area of the sky see:
http://www.ifa.hawaii.edu/publications/preprints/08preprints/Reipurth_08-209.pdf

Sh2-54 is far too large for my system being about 9 square degrees in area. It does have a brighter area that does fit my image scale so that\'s the part I centered on. Note there are several \"elephant trunk\" features in the image. They all point back to NGC 6604 confirming its association with this nebula.

You can see the entire nebula at Dean Salman\'s website:
http://sharplesscatalog.com/Sharpless.aspx?Sharp=54

Normally I display images with north up. I am making an exception here and have oriented it south up. This is because my sick brain sees this nebula looking like a chihuahua making a rather rude gesture with its front legs. Maybe it should be known as the Rude Chihuahua Nebula? Since a chihuahua\'s leg can\'t bend in that direction without breaking that may explain why it is mad. I should mention I\'m no fan of that breed. My maternal grandmother carried one wherever she went (almost 8 decades before Paris Hilton). I was 4 and told to kiss grandma good night. The dog chomped on my nose so hard I needed quite a few stitches. Next night I was told to do the same. I put up quite a fight but lost. This time the bandages helped, I only needed two stitches replaced. A couple days later my cat killed the blankety-blank dog much to my glee. The dog annoyed it one too many times. The cat was 20 pounds of muscle (mostly Maine Coon), Chihuahua 3.5 pounds of trembling \"Jello\" and sharp teeth. So is it getting back at me from the skies? My wife claims it looks like a pig but she had no encounters with that chihuahua.

14\" LX200R @ f/10, L=4x10\' RG=2x10\'B=3X10\' STL-11000XM, Paramount ME