M78

Object RA DEC Dimension Distance Object Type
NGC 2068,  M78 05h 46m 45.0s +00 04 48" 8.0 X 6.0 1.6 kly reflection nebula
NGC 2064 05h 46m 18.4s +00 00 21" 1.0 X 1.0 1.6 kly reflection nebula
NGC 2067 05h 46m 32.0s +00 07 54" 8.0 X 3.0 1.6 kly reflection nebula
NGC 2071 05h 47m 07.2s +00 17 39" 7.0 X 5.0 1.6 kly reflection nebula

Constelation:  Orion           Best Month to View:  Dec

M78 is the brightest diffuse reflection nebula of a group of nebulae that include NGC 2064, NGC 2067 and NGC 2071. This group belongs to the Orion Molecular Cloud Complex and is about 1,600 light years distant from Earth. M78 is easily found in small telescopes as a hazy patch and involves two stars of 10th magnitude. These two stars, HD 38563A and HD 38563B, are responsible for making the cloud of dust in M78 visible by reflecting their light.