Willow Springs Sept 15, 2007

by Mark Wagner

Last Saturday I was at Willow Springs, as the guest of a neighbor of Bob Ayers. Conditions were good for most of the night, then around 2 a.m. clouds moved in from the west and ended the observing session. During a good part of the night there was some slight dewing, and the seeing vary from okay to very good. At one point another observer was running well over 600X on The Blue Snowball planetary. We also had the opportunity to observe through a 33" f/5 Dob. Among the views were planetaries, including The Helix, NGC 891 and the nearby Abell Galaxy Cluster AGC 347, and NGC 1300 - which is a large bright spiral galaxy with a huge bar. What a scope, when a photo is available I'll post it.

I took it pretty easy, spending some time looking through other scopes and sharing my scope with others. I used the remaining items on my September observing list, that I didn't get to last week at Plettstone. There were less big name targets, like Hicksons or Abell Clusters, but still the objects were enjoyable and varied. In another observer's 18" scope I also observed Abell 49, Abell 53, and something called "The Propeller" Nebula. Here are my notes, using my 18" f/4.5 Dob, 20mm, 12mm and 7mm Nagler eyepieces.

Arp 13    Peg    GX    2.5'x1.2'    11.6    23 00 03    15 58 50
NGC 7448 - Bright galaxy approx 2.5' x 1.2' with brighter core condensed to stellar point with averted. Extended mostly E/W.

AGC 2593    Peg    GXCL    28'    15.1    23 24 30    14 38 00
Only galaxies visible in cluster are NGC 7649 and IC1487, both non-descript, brighter one shows some elliptical shape but in indeterminant orientation.

Arp 150    Peg    GX    0.8'x0.5'    14.9    23 19 30    09 30 28
AKA Hickson 95 - NGC 7609 is elongated E/W and very small, moderately bright. MCG 1-59-48 is separated out and obvious. MCG 1-59-46 is visually almost attached to the NGC, but with averted vision at high power (293X) can be distinguished, just off the S edge. Other MCG is to the SE.

Arp 298    Peg    GX    1.4'x1.0'    13    23 03 15    08 52 27
NGC 7649 extended WNW/ESE with 1.4' x .8' with intense stellar core and dim but distinct halo. Dim star involved in E edge of halo. IC 5283 dim and large without features, elongated in same direction as NGC, about same size, 1.2' to N of NGC. Nice contrast of two different galaxies.

N7177    Peg    GX    3.1'x2.0'    12    22 00 41    17 44 18
Moderately bright, elongated mostly E/W, about 3'x2', core is oddly elongated off-axis N/E to S/W, at 294X a stellar nucleus appears.

Arp 169    Peg    GX    0.6'    14.6    22 14 45    13 50 46
NGC 7236/7237 - Brighter galaxy is western of the pair, and small circular glow of about 0.5', no features although maybe slightly brighter inner portion. Dimmer galaxy is to E and elongated NE/SE, perhaps 0.8'x0.5'.

M15    Peg    GC    18.0'    6.3    21 29 58    12 10 01
Unevenly distributed stars, less along western side. Almost a bar of stars cross N to S, others stars trail off to E. Core is about 3' in diamter and intensely packed, much more so than the rest of the cluster, and becomes more intense toward its center. Perhaps 15' overall diameter if stars extending out W of the apparent western edge are included.

N7156    Peg    GX    1.6'x1.3'    13.1    21 54 33    02 56 34
Dim, about 2'x2', round, perhaps mottled, brighter section crossing NNE/SSW.

M2    Aqr    GC    16.0'    6.6    21 33 27    -00 49 12
About 14' diameter, stars end abruptly off the ENE edge. Evenly condenses to an intense core, but not so intense as M15. Halo is much more populated than M15.

Arp 92    Psc    GX    1.5'x0.9'    14    23 18 56    00 14 38
Seyfert galaxy, NGC 7603, oval slightly elongated N/S, even brightness across galaxy, 1.5'x1.0', stellar core is so bright the galaxy at low magnification first looks like a bright star.

Arp 3    Aqr    GX    2.4'x1.9'    13.4    22 36 35    -02 54 25
Appears as an extremely faint smudge with a slightly elongation E/W. Uniform glow, no other detail. About 3'x2'.

Arp 314    Aqr    GX    1.0'x0.7'    13.7    22 56 02    -03 46 11
Nice group of three galaxies. Brightest is elongated N/S, just SE is another dimmer and round galaxy, third is averted only and mostly S of the second galaxy. No detail.

Arp 223    Aqr    GX    3.0'x2.5'    12.3    23 18 01    -04 39 03
About 3'x2.5', elong NW/SE, bright core with dim stellar nucleus, possible arm on W and E ends.

Arp 15    Aqr    GX    2.0'x0.8'    13.4    22 51 38    -05 33 27
NGC7393 Very dim stellar core, elongated 3:2, even brightness across galaxy, elongated E-W, about 3'x2'.


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