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Old 10-10-2010, 08:37 PM
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Observing Report with sketches 1-2 Oct 2010 Part 2

Continued from part 1...


ABELL 151


IC 80

Cetus, GX, RA 01 08 48 , Dec -15 24 35 , Size 0.5x0.5' , Mag B = 14.4


267x - The only member of Abell 151 visible. Located 731 million light years away!! Very faint, nothing but a tiny gossamer of light.


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ABELL S 921

NGC 7012
Microscopium , GX , RA 21 06 45 , Dec -44 48 54 , Size 1.5x1.0' , Mag V= 12.8

ESO 286-IG052
Microscopium , GX , RA 21 06 51 , Dec -44 49 07 , Size 1.3x0.9' , Mag B= 13.8


267x - NGC 7012 was spotted with relative ease, although fairly faint it does have high surface brightness. It is the brightest member of this cluster. It is located 1' ENE of a mag 12.1 star. Visually it measures about 30" across, much smaller than the size quoted as alot of this is actually the very faint outer halo. ESO 286-IG052 is located 2' ESE of 7012 and appeared smaller, more diffuse with lower surface brightness than it's neighbour. A mag 15.1 star located about 30" ESE of 7012 was seen.


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ABELL S 301


IC 1860
Fornax, GX , RA 02 49 34 , Dec -31 11 20 , Size 2.3x1.7' , Mag V= 12.7

6dFGS gJ042919.4-534859
Fornax , GX , RA 02 49 45 , Dec -31 09 31 , Size - , Mag B= 15.69

IC 1859
Fornax , GX, RA 02 49 04 , Dec -31 10 21 , Size 1.5x1.0 , Mag B= 14.2


IC 1858
Fornax , GX , RA 02 49 08 , Dec -31 17 24 , Size 2.5x0.7' , Mag B= 14.1


267x - IC 1860 is the brightest and largest member of Abell S 301.Slightly elongated N-S at 267x with a condensed core. About 3' NE is 2dFGRS S467Z714, which at 381x appeared extremely faint, small and round. Approx 7' W of IC1860 is IC 1859, which at 267x was very faint, but a slight N-S elongation could be seen. Further afield about 7' S of 1859 is IC 1858, which visually appeared to be the second brightest after IC 1860 and at 267x I noted it as small, faint but it brightens towards the core.



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I also observed M42 at the end of the Saturday session and bloody hell it was AMAZING! I never seen such detail in it before, and it was just so bright. Several faint stars were seen around the central region, which last time I observed it back last year were spotted with only some difficulty, but now they were as plain as day! All 6 trap stars were clearly seen at low magnification, despite the poor seeing, and the central bright area was nothing short of spectacular, detail I don't think I've seen before. Just the vividness of the entire object was quite extraordinary.



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that's it, back to clouds now...
Cheers

Last edited by pgc hunter; 11-10-2010 at 11:25 AM.
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Old 10-10-2010, 09:36 PM
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The PGC hunter hunts them down and how!

Great observations Sab. I have no idea how you see a mag 15.7 galaxy in light polluted skies with a 12" scope. Brilliant. And so much detail in such faint things.

And of course superb sketches.

They could probably save a fair bit of money on VLTs etc by just giving you a 22" scope in some dark skies, a pencil and piece of paper.

BTW how do you navigate/what do you use to select and find targets?
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Old 11-10-2010, 11:34 AM
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The PGC hunter hunts them down and how!

Great observations Sab. I have no idea how you see a mag 15.7 galaxy in light polluted skies with a 12" scope. Brilliant. And so much detail in such faint things.

And of course superb sketches.

They could probably save a fair bit of money on VLTs etc by just giving you a 22" scope in some dark skies, a pencil and piece of paper.

BTW how do you navigate/what do you use to select and find targets?
Thanks Patrick. To see the real faint stuff I use a black hood on my head which works really well for blocking out local light pollution. Magnification helps, it increases the darkness of the background sky aiding contrast, so I find magnifications of 350-400x to be superior to 250x or so, even in poor seeing, when hunting very small very faint galaxies. This particular galaxy is a compact high surface brightness elliptical so that helps see it. YOu also need to take your time scanning the field, a short glance won't do.

I use the Millenium star atlas and I print off DSS images of the objects I'm looking for which helps pin point the locations of these faint buggers. Knowing the *exact* location is critical and concentrating your gaze there otherwise you won't see nothing.
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Old 11-10-2010, 03:38 PM
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Great report Sab and Awesome sketches.

Regards orestis
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Old 11-10-2010, 08:52 PM
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Thanks Patrick. To see the real faint stuff I use a black hood on my head which works really well for blocking out local light pollution. Magnification helps, it increases the darkness of the background sky aiding contrast, so I find magnifications of 350-400x to be superior to 250x or so, even in poor seeing, when hunting very small very faint galaxies. This particular galaxy is a compact high surface brightness elliptical so that helps see it. YOu also need to take your time scanning the field, a short glance won't do.

I use the Millenium star atlas and I print off DSS images of the objects I'm looking for which helps pin point the locations of these faint buggers. Knowing the *exact* location is critical and concentrating your gaze there otherwise you won't see nothing.
Thanks for the tips, Sab. I like the idea of printing some DSS photos, especially with the galaxy groups. I find it very helpful when the Night Sky Observer's Guide has photos of galaxy groups - makes it much easier to find what I'm looking for and to know what's what. But there are a lot that it doesn't have especially amongst the fainter ones. Last night I spent a bit of time with Abells 2870 and 2877, but was not able to really sort them out. The NSOG has some sketches of the group which I need to further play with, But DSS images would definitely help.
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Old 11-10-2010, 09:48 PM
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Thanks for the tips, Sab. I like the idea of printing some DSS photos, especially with the galaxy groups. I find it very helpful when the Night Sky Observer's Guide has photos of galaxy groups - makes it much easier to find what I'm looking for and to know what's what. But there are a lot that it doesn't have especially amongst the fainter ones. Last night I spent a bit of time with Abells 2870 and 2877, but was not able to really sort them out. The NSOG has some sketches of the group which I need to further play with, But DSS images would definitely help.
Hey Patrick,

go to www.wikisky.org you can look up DSS images of any object and pan around, zoom in and out, the entire sky is covered. Excellent resource and I use it all the time.
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Old 12-10-2010, 11:42 AM
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Thanks Sab, That's a great link. When I've used DSS til now it's been through the STScI web site which is very useful but can can a bit cumbersome to use. This is very easy. I will be using it heaps.

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Old 13-10-2010, 11:38 PM
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no worries, I was ecstatic when I discovered it and now I couldn't live without it.
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