Skull Nebula

Image captured at Mount Lemmon Sky Centre’'

Observation Data
Epoch: J2000
Right Ascension: 00h 47m 03.338s
Declination: -11° 52′ 18.94″
Constellation: Cetus
Apparent Dimensions (V): 3.8’ x 3.8’
Apparent Magnitude (V): 8[1] / 11.8 (central star)[2]
Absolute Magnitude (V): {{{absmag_v}}}
Type: {{{pn_type}}}
Radius: 2-3 light-years
Helio Radial Velocity: -15.70 km/s
Redshift: -0.000052
Distance: 1,600 light-years
Other Designations
NGC 246, Pac-Man Nebula,[3] Caldwell 56

NGC 246, known as the Skull Nebula,[4] is a planetary nebula in the constellation Cetus. The nebula and the stars associated with it are listed in several catalogs, as summarized by the SIMBAD database.[2] It is roughly 1,600 light-years away.[5] The nebula's central star is the 12th magnitude[5] white dwarf HIP 3678.

Among some amateur astronomers, NGC 246 is known as the "Pac-Man Nebula" because of the arrangement of its central stars and the surrounding star field.[3]


  1. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named seds
  2. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named simbad
  3. 3.0 3.1 David H. Levy, Deep Sky Objects, Prometheus Books, 2005, ISBN 1-59102-361-0, p 129.
  4. "The Night Sky", Astronomy Now, Oct 2008.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Stephen James O'Meara, The Caldwell Objects, Sky Publishing Corporation, ISBN 0-933346-97-2, p 223.

External links