|PATH:||The Astronomy Connection Observing Targets November Messier Tour|
By: "Tony Cecce, Corning, NY"
This month we will search for seven more objects from the Messier Catalog. These include four globular clusters, the largest and the smallest planetary nebulas in the catalog, and a small oddity. Two of the objects are fairly easy in binoculars, while four others will require dark skies, patience, and keen eyes to find.
This smallest planetary nebula in the Messier Catalog is the famous
Ring nebula in the constellation Lyra. Low power telescope views show a
very small blue/green disk, not much bigger than a star. Medium to high
power will magnify the size of the nebula while leaving the surrounding
stars the same size, confirming you have found it. Can be seen in
binoculars as a faint star like point of light.
Also in the constellation of Lyra we find our first globular cluster
of the night. In a telescope look for a small round ball of light,
slightly brighter in the center. This is a difficult binocular object
appearing as a small fuzzy patch.
Also known as the Dumbbell nebula, the largest planetary nebula in
the Messier Catalog, M27 lies in the constellation Vulpecula. Fairly
easy to see in binoculars as a small hazy patch. In small to medium
scopes it appears as a rectangular patch of light. In large scopes it
may even appear round in shape with a bright rectangular, or dumbbell
Lying in Sagitta, this globular cluster appears as a faint oval hazy
patch of light in a telescope. This is a very difficult but possible
binocular object, requiring dark skies and trained eyes.
This globular cluster in Capricornus is tough but very possible to
see in binoculars as a faint fuzzy star. Telescopes show a small fuzzy
ball of light, bright in the center fading to the edges.
This is a small faint globular cluster in Aquarius. Look for a
faint oval patch of light, gradually brighter towards the middle. A very
difficult binocular object.
This asterism is located near M72 in Aquarius. In a low power
telescope view it looks like a very small fuzzy patch of light at first
glance. When stared at it reveals itself as a small collection of stars.
Medium to high power shows the view best described by Messier "cluster of
three or four stars...containing very little nebulosity".
Last Month - M11, M16, M17, M18, M24, M25, M26, M55, M75 Next Month - M2, M15, M29, M31, M32, M39, M52, M110 Revision 10/95, A.J. Cecce