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NGC 3576 - The Statue of Liberty Nebula Astrophotography Pictures and Tips

Updated: May 17, 2023

The Statue of Liberty Nebula is a colorful and bright emission nebula in the constellation Carina. It is a great target for beginner astrophotographers living in the southern hemisphere! In this post, you will find information, images, and tips to photograph the Statue of Liberty Nebula.

Object Designation: NGC 3576

Also known as: The Statue of Liberty Nebula

Constellation: Carina

Object Type: Emission Nebula

Distance: 9,000 light-years away

Magnitude: 9.1

Discovered in: March 16 1834 by John Herschel

Below you will find two different versions of the Statue of Liberty Nebula. One was taken with a large telescope and shows an up-close view of the object, while the other was taken with a small widefield refractor telescope. We like both fields of view, what about you?


The Statue of Liberty Nebula Close-Up with a PlaneWave Telescope

PlaneWave Telescope and mount
The equipment used to capture NGC 3576 up close

The Statue of Liberty Nebula is located in the southern constellation Carina, and so is not visible from the northern hemisphere.

Because we live in Nevada, we don't have a choice but to use a remote telescope service if we want to capture this object. In this case, I decided to use "Telescope Live" to remotely image the object.

You can see the result below, it is a total of 9 hours taken from a Bortle 1 zone in Chile with a PlaneWave CDK24 and CCD camera. Narrowband filters were used, which I combined into the Hubble Palette as "S-H-O". I really like the number of different colors interacting within the gases!

The Statue of Liberty Nebula in SHO Narrowband


Camera: FLI Proline PL9000

Telescope: PlaneWave 24" f/6.5 CDK

Mount: Mathis MI-1000/1250 with absolute encoders

Processing: Pixinsight, with RC-Astro plugins


Total Exposure Time: 9 hours

Exposure Time per frame: 10 minutes

Filters: Astrodon 3nm SHO


The Statue of Liberty Nebula Widefield with a Small Refractor Telescope

After processing the close-up version of NGC 3576, I also wanted to get a wide view on it and see how much gas was in the surrounding area.

This second attempt was done using a small refractor telescope, the Takahashi FSQ-106 ED. The focal length here is 382mm, versus 3962mm previously with the CDK 24, that's a big difference! This data was once again acquired using Telescope Live.

The Statue of Liberty Nebula can be seen in the center. Just to the left of it is NGC 3584. The two nebulae appear to be interacting, but they are actually at completely different distances and are not related in any way. The nebulosity you see on the upper right is NGC 3503, which is a reflection nebula very close to the Great Carina Nebula.

On the bottom left is a section from the Running Chicken Nebula (IC 2944).

Statue of Liberty Nebula widefield in narrowband with a small refractor telescope

Want to process your images following our own workflow? Download our PixInsight PDF Guide!


Camera: FLI PL16803

Telescope: Takahashi FSQ-106